The knightly shield was made of wood, with a curve to allow it to wrap around the body and also cover the left shoulder.

The outside was usually covered in material or thin leather, and painted with the heraldic arms of the wearer, if he was a knight. The inside was padded to help protect the user’s arm.

A long strap called a guige went around the user’s neck, to support the weight of the shield, while shorter straps called enarmes fastened it to the left arm.

How was it used?

The shield was the most vital protection a knight carried. It could stop almost any attack, from swords, arrows, spears, axes and clubs.

However, being made of wood, the shield suffered damage under heavy attacks, and could only stop so many before it began to split and fall apart.

It was also an important weapon in itself. The user could not only block attacks with it, he could punch with the edge, stab with the point and use it to ram his whole body into the enemy.