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I am looking for information on zirah bagtar style of plate and chain armor.

I am currently recreating a suit of that armor in this style and a history of its use and development have been difficult to pin down. The style of armor was brought into India by the Mughals. The plate and chain styles of armor were first seen in the Middle East in the form of leg protection. This form of armor is also seen in Japanese culture with a different appearance but similar techniques.

One of the issues that I keep running into is that a lot of the information on this style of armor is not in English, so finding source material is difficult. While I can duplicate the style and the techniques, I am left with a minimal background of how and why the armor developed in the form it did, in contrast the to European model of development of more full plate styles.


I have several hypotheses in concept of design:

  • one involves the climate of the regions. Plate armor is dangerous to use in hot climates. More so than the open armor design. This is one possibility for the difference in design development.

  • The other major one is that people just liked the look. Armor design was often determined by fashion trends as much as defensive value. The other point of interest is the possibilities of religious influence in the development of this particular style of armor; many armors of this style are decorated with Islamic symbols.

  • The final hypothesis is the potential lack of appropriate materials, though this is questionable since the Ottoman Empire was more advanced than their European counterparts during much of the historical era in which this armor was prevalent.

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  • this an old archived site that has some information on the concept. – David Richardson Jun 16 '15 at 18:08
  • Is "Ottoman Empire" the right tag? – Mark C. Wallace Jun 16 '15 at 18:24
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    from a historical perspective the Ottoman Empire has a direct influence on the Indian armor design during that time. The more prevalent historical examples of this style of armor are from the ottoman empire. This style of armor is a sub-style armor from that that trended towards India. I am specifically researching the Indian Style armor, but the origins of the style are Ottoman Empire. Which is why I included the tag. – David Richardson Jun 16 '15 at 18:30
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    There are a lot of point of references connected to the transition of armor styles, from conquerors to migrations of people. That start to get into the book level of research. I can provide references to a long list of connection points from the transitional style stages of armor in the west and migration patterns to the east, but I felt that would be to broad of a reference point for the question when I originally posted it. – David Richardson Jun 16 '15 at 18:50

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