Royal Armouries Museums

There is always lots to see and do at the Royal Armouries.
Our museums are open every day and admission is free!

Opening times

10am to 5pm (last entry 4.30pm)

Latest opening information

There are 110 items tagged with ‘armour

66 Pages

1. About us

The Royal Armouries is the national museum of arms and armour for the United Kingdom. It is the oldest museum in the country and home to one of the great collections of arms and armour in the world.

2. Tower of London Events

Experience 1000 years of history at the world famous White Tower at the Tower of London, home to the Royal Armouries.

3. Research

The Royal Armouries encourages research into arms and armour and related subjects from all periods of history from antiquity to the present day.

4. Specialist Enquiries

Our team of specialists are able to answer all kinds of enquiries on the subject of arms and armour, related material, and of course its related history and the history of the Tower of London.

5. Hall of Steel

The Hall of Steel is one of the central features of the museum in Leeds. It can be seen from every floor, where it offers views of mass displays of arms and armour, over 2500 objects.

6. Top 10 Objects

The Royal Armouries top 10 objects from its collection.

7. Robert Coltman Clephan

A brief account of the work and life of Robert Coltman Clephan (1839-1922)

8. Baron de Cosson

A brief account of the work and life of Baron de Cosson (1846-1929)

9. Harold Arthur Lee-Dillon

A brief account of the life and work of Harold Arthur Lee-Dillon, 17th Viscount of Costello-Gallen (1844-1932)

10. Charles John ffoulkes

A brief account of the life and work of Charles John ffoulkes (1868-1947)

11. John Hewitt

A brief account of the life and work of John Hewitt (1807-1878)

12. Sir Guy Francis Laking

A brief account of the life and work of Sir Guy Francis Laking (1875-1919)

13. Lt. Gen. Augustus Henry Lane Fox Pitt Rivers

A brief account of the life and work of Lt. Gen. Augustus Henry Lane Fox Pitt Rivers (1827-1900)

14. General Sir John Lefroy

A brief account of the life and work of General Sir John Lefroy (1817-1890)

15. General Sir John Lefroy

A brief account of the life and work of General Sir John Lefroy (1817-1890)

16. Sir James Mann

A brief account of the life and work of Sir James Mann (1897-1962)

17. Samuel Rush Meyrick

A brief account of the life and work of Samuel Rush Meyrick (1783-1848)

18. Distinguishing replacement rivets on armour

An analytical project to determine the presence of replacement rivets on steel armour.

19. An unusual form of oriental mail

An analytical project to determine how an Indian mail shirt was made.

20. Medieval Warfare

This gallery is about the arms and armour of the Middle Ages up to about 1400.

21. 16th Century

16th century War gallery at the Royal Armouries museum in Leeds.

22. Self-defence

Self-defence display in the Self Defence gallery at the Royal Armouries museum in Leeds.

23. Oriental Gallery

The Oriental gallery in the Royal Armouries museum in Leeds.

24. Thom Richardson

Thom Richardson is the Keeper of European Armour and Oriental collections at the Royal Armouries Museum based in Leeds.

25. Hands on history seminars

This series of seminars will give you an opportunity to experience first hand some of the finest objects from the Royal Armouries great collections.

26. Karen Watts

Karen Watts is Senior Curator of European Armour at the Royal Armouries Museum based in Leeds.

27. The Arms and Armour Society

The Arms and Armour Society is one of the leading groups in the world of those concerned with the study, collection and preservation of arms and armour.

28. Collection

The Royal Armouries collection consists of arms, armour and artillery dating from antiquity to the present day, fine and decorative arts, a special collection of material relating to the history of the Tower of London, a library and archives.

29. Henry VIII: Arms and the Man

Published to coincide with the 500th anniversary of the accession of King Henry VIII to the English throne. This definitive publication illustrates and records over 90 Henrician treasures from the Royal Armouries own collections and from around the world.

30. The metallurgy of Japanese plate armour

An analytical project to determine the metallurgical quality and effectiveness of Japanese armour.

31. Duplex bulletproof armour

An analytical project to discover the makers mark on the inner plate of a duplex breastplate.

32. The metallurgy of plate armour

An analytical project to examine the metallurgy of plate armour and changes in it through time and place.

33. Gilding on plate armour

An analytical project to determine the presence of gold plating on steel armour.

34. Zinc coatings of Indian plate and mail armour

An analytical project to determine the presence of zinc on Indian mail armour.

35. Investigating a sixteenth century Welsh buckler

An analytical project to determine the original appearance of a 16th century Welsh buckler shield.

36. The jack of plates: Evidence of re-cycling

An analytical project to discover more about the iron plates in a Tudor jack of plates.

37. A Heavily restored Corinthian helmet

An analytical project to determine the extent of earlier repairs to a 5th century BC “Corinthian” Greek helmet.

38. Buff coats and Baldricks

Information about buff-coats and baldricks suitable for KS3 History: English Civil Wars.

39. Harquebusier armour

Information about harquebusier armour suitable for KS3 History: English Civil Wars.

40. Cuirassier armour

Information about cuirassier armour suitable for KS3 History: English Civil Wars.

41. Pikemen's armour

Information about Pikemen in the English Civil Wars; suitable for KS3 History: English Civil Wars.

42. Task 4 Change over time

Task 4: Change over time.
Teachers notes to accompany the Royal Armouries English Civil War module on Littlecote House.

43. What's On

Our summer events run Saturday 23 July to Sunday 4 September

Charge down to the museum for loads of summer fun. Come rain or shine there’s always something exciting going on.

44. Explore Littlecote House (without Flash)

Study the English Civil War through exploring Littlecote House. This section does not use Adobe Flash®.

45. Great Hall in Littlecote House

Littlecote House was home to the greatest surviving English Civil Wars armoury. Explore the photograph of the Great Hall and learn more about the arms and armour.

46. Colonel Alexander Popham

Colonel Alexander Popham was commander in the Parliamentarian army during the English Civil Wars. He was also the owner of Littlecote House, which was an armoury and garrison.

47. Carbines and blunderbusses

Information about flintlock carbines suitable for KS3 History: English Civil Wars.

48. Leeds Events

Available every weekend
Crossbow Range
Jester’s Yard
Discover
Hands-on
Explore

49. Home

Royal Armouries – National Museum of Arms and Armour, keeper of Tower of London history, and the National Collection of Artillery. Museums in Leeds, West Yorkshire; Tower of London; and Fareham, Portsmouth, Hampshire.

50. Dragon

Building on the tradition of trophies of arms and armour created at the Tower of London from the late 17th century, this new dragon has been constructed using objects and materials that represent ten institutions which were housed in the Tower.

51. Games

Welcome to our game zone where you can play games created by the Royal Armouries and some created for us.

52. Fit for a King

See five hundred years of spectacular royal armour, offering a fascinating insight into the personalities, power and physical size of England’s kings.

53. Armour for the joust of war

This armour came from Maximilian’s own armoury at Vienna and was probably worn by the Holy Roman Emperor himself.

54. Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester

This splendid armour was probably made for Dudley to wear during the pageants and displays he organised to entertain the Queen during her visit to his estate, Kenilworth Castle in 1575.

55. Sir Christopher Hatton

This vamplate, with its restored gilding, was fitted over the lance to protect the hand.

56. Peregrine Bertie, Lord Willoughby d'Eresby

A portrait of Lord Willoughby d’Eresby.

57. Armour for a courtier of Queen Elizabeth I

This armour was made for a courtier of Queen Elizabeth I and is the only armour in the gallery that is made up for the tourney.

58. Elector Christian I of Saxony's helmet

This helmet is part of the foot tourney armour, which was one of twelve made by Anton Peffenhauser in 1591, as a Christmas present for the Elector Christian I of Saxony from his wife, the Electress Sophia.

59. Tournament Games

Have fun with our tournament games. Help Henry VIII dress for his foot combat, or if you are feeling brave you can fight him in the foot combat or in a joust.

60. Hands On

Ever fancied getting your hands on a 15th-century pollaxe or a Civil War musket?

61. YouTube

See all of the Royal Armouries videos here in one place. These have all been posted on YouTube™.

62. The Arms and Armour Society

The Arms and Armour Society is one of the leading groups in the world of those concerned with the study, collection and preservation of arms and armour.

63. The Armor and Arms Club

The Armor and Arms Club is the oldest Medieval and Renaissance arms collectors’ club in the United States, founded in 1921 by Dr. Bashford Dean, founder and first Curator of the Department of Arms and Armor at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

64. Inspired by... The craft of the armourer exhibition

An exhibition of drawings by local Leeds illustrator Sean Casey on display in the Tournament gallery in the Royal Armouries Museum in Leeds.

65. The Life of Lord Tokugawa Ieyasu

The following essay is not intended to be a comprehensive biography of Lord Tokugawa Ieyasu, but an outline of some of the military exploits that led him to the pivotal battle of Seki ga Hara and beyond.

66. Glossary

Glossary of arms and armour and specialist terms related to the history of the museum and the Tower of London.

40 Events

1. The Armed Man - A Mass for Peace

Sing Live UK will perform The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace by Karl Jenkins, which was commissioned by the Museum to mark the end of a millennium ravaged by wars. Sunday 11 September, 3pm.

2. Japanese Arms and Armour Seminar

Ian Bottomley, Curator Emeritus of Oriental arms and armour at the Royal Armouries, gives a fascinating insight into the traditions and techniques of Japanese armourers and swordsmiths.

3. Friday Lunchtime Lectures

The Greenwich Armoury by Thom Richardson

4. Friday Lunchtime Lectures

The Greenwich Armoury by Thom Richardson

5. Friday Lunchtime Lectures

The ‘Horned Helmet’ of Henry VIII by Graeme Rimer.

6. Friday Lunchtime Lectures

The ‘Horned Helmet’ of Henry VIII by Graeme Rimer.

7. October Half Term

An action packed week to keep the kids out of mischief.

8. Family Fun Day

Fantastic and free activities for children visiting the White Tower

9. Half-term Children's Activities

Fantastic and free activities for children visiting the White Tower.

10. Dragons' Den

Explore the mystical East and discover treasures from Japan and China.

11. NAPOLEONIC WEEKEND

Bringing history to life.

12. The Real Iron Men

Forget Hollywood, forget special effects, forget CGI – come and see real iron men in real 3D doing battle live in front of your eyes.

13. The decoration of arms and armour

Discover more about the art of the armourer and take a fresh look at some of our most decorative pieces.

14. Friday Lunchtime Lectures

Tournaments in Tudor Times by Karen Watts.

15. Friday Lunchtime Lectures

Tournaments in Tudor Times by Karen Watts.

16. The Armed Man comes home

Sing Live UK will perform The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace by Karl Jenkins, which was commissioned by the Museum to mark the end of a millennium ravaged by wars. Sunday 7 November, 3pm.

17. Jousting Tournament

A thrilling spectacle for all the family as knights in armour from around the world clash in combat to win the Queen’s Jubilee Trophy.

18. Horsepower!

An entertaining and illuminating lecture exploring the evolution of tournaments from training for war to extreme sport.

19. The Hundred Years War: A Century of Conflict Re-evaluated

Bringing together some of the principal historians of the 14th and 15th centuries this conference will offer fresh new insights into our traditional interpretation of the Hundred Years’ War.

20. The English Civil Wars - conference

Examining the causes of the English Civil Wars and detailed discussion of the most significant battles plus the social, political and historical impact.

21. Tudor Arms Seminar

A special selection of objects has been chosen for an exclusive handling session.

22. YOU DON’T SEE ONE OF THESE EVERY DAY!

The world of arms and armour is awash with rarities, this is your chance to handle unique items from the Royal Armouries collections.

23. SEMINAR: THE ARMOURER’S ART

Join our expert curator to handle original examples of Renaissance armour showing techniques such as engraving, etching, gilding, embossing, damascening and bluing.

24. CONFERENCE: EAST MEETS WEST

A one-day conference celebrating the 400th anniversary of the gift of armour from the Shogun of Japan, Tokugawa Hidetada, to King James I and VI of England and Scotland.

25. ROYAL ARMOURIES: IN FOCUS

An exhibition by Leeds Photographic Society presenting a unique insight into the Royal Armouries’ national collection of arms and armour.

26. LECTURE: TOURNAMENT: COMBAT AND CONTEST

Join Karen Watts, Senior Curator of Armour, for an informative and entertaining lecture about tournaments.

27. LECTURE: JAPANESE GIFT ARMOUR

Join Thom Richardson to find out more about some of the oldest Japanese armours in the museum’s collection.

28. SEMINAR - BATTLE OF TOWTON, 1461

Find out how the bloodiest battle of the War of the Roses unfolded and handle contemporary pieces from the Royal Armouries collections.

29. SEMINAR - BATTLE OF TOWTON, 1461

Find out how the bloodiest battle of the War of the Roses unfolded and handle contemporary pieces from the Royal Armouries collections.

30. SEMINAR: ARMS AND ARMOUR OF THE WARS OF THE THREE KINGDOMS

A special all-day seminar on English Civil War including lectures on arms and armour of the seventeenth century, collections handling session and guided tours of the museum’s galleries.

31. SEMINAR - PIRACY AND CONFLICT

Explore the weapons used by pirates through history with curator of Firearms, Jonathan Ferguson.

32. SEMINAR - PIRACY AND CONFLICT

Explore the weapons used by pirates through history with curator of Firearms, Jonathan Ferguson.

33. SEMINAR: WEAPONS AND THE MOVIES

Handle historic objects from our collection and weapons made by movie special effects team, WETA Workshop.

34. SEMINAR: WAR GAMING

Join our curators to handle a selection of real firearms and swords featured in classic and more recent games.

35. SEMINAR: GANGSTERS' PARADISE

Bank robbers, smugglers, public enemies and police corruption, discover the real weapons of criminals.

36. SUMMER KNIGHTS

Summer events for all the family this summer at the Royal Armouries Museum in Leeds.

37. SEMINAR - Unusual and obscure arms and armour

Join our expert curatorial staff to learn about some of the more obscure and unusual elements of the Royal Armouries’ collections.

38. SEMINAR - European Edged Weapons

Get to grips with important and unique weapons from the Bronze Age and the Middle Ages, basket-hilts, small-swords and even swords from the movies.

39. TALK - Franz Ferdinand and the mystery of the silk vest

Join Royal Armouries researcher Lisa Traynor and discover the mysterious case of the silk bullet-proof vest.

40. SUMMER 2014

Something Different Every Day


4 Press Releases

1. Royal Armouries to host major international conference in Leeds

Experts from around the world will travel to the Royal Armouries (RA) in Leeds for a major international conference on the study of Renaissance arms and armour.

2. Showcase movie exhibition puts Royal Armouries in the running for a tourism Oscar

Britain’s oldest museum, the Royal Armouries in Leeds, is in the running for a Yorkshire tourism award following the success of its exciting exhibition – Arms and Armour from the Movies: The Wonderful World of Weta.

3. Hooray! Henry returns to Leeds in style!

The Royal Armouries Tournament Gallery has undergone a major makeover to mark the return of Henry VIII’s world famous armour to Leeds.

4. IRON MAN GOES ON SHOW IN THE HALL OF STEEL

A spectacular replica of the suit worn by super hero Iron Man is now a major attraction at the Royal Armouries Museum in Leeds.