Medieval girdle purse from Konstanz

dated 1280 - 1340 (front panel of back pocket made according to an excavated piece from Konstanz, Germany, dated to end of 13th century. Overall shape is inspired by pictures from Romance of Alexander; Bodley 264; 1338 - 1344)

The shape of the purse is taken from an excavated piece from Konstanz DE (Schnack 1994, taf.44, 518/552) dated to end of 13th century. This piece is in the above mentioned text interpreted as embroidered, but following the latest knowledge on the subject and theses of O. Goubitz (2009), we can safely guess, that it is a front panel of the back pocket with sewn on pouchlets. As the pouchlets were made of different kind of leather they are rarely present on the archaeoloical sites. Overall construction of the piece than follows the same thesis of O. Goubitz. The shape of the front pocket is enlarged copy of the back pocket, as is quite common in these kind of purses (e.g. 2 similar pieces from London - Egan&Pritchard 1991)

The shape of the loops for the belt is inspired by the iluminations in Romance of Alexander (Bodley 264; 1338 - 1344; fol. 82v) aswell as the ratio of the loops and the pouches.

The purse is made out of vegetable tanned goat leather, with pouchlets made of chrom tanned goat leather and flax lining on the inner part of the fron pouch. All the sewing is made by thick flax thread mostly on the sewing mashine.

Vegetable tanned goat leather is quite popular medieval material for leather products such as purses and pouches in 14th century. Material used on this piece is quite thick (2,5mm) but soft. The leather has furrowed surface characteristic for this great and durable material.

Overall height 14,5cm

Overall width 17,5cm

Width of the opening of the back pocket 16cm

Height of the back pocket max. 9cm

Width of the opening of the front pocket 11cm

Loops for the belt 2,5cm

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