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Spurs and Rowels

Rowels probably originated in France or Spain in the 10th Century A.D., they are first recorded in Britain in Henry III's reign - two seals from 1240 depict the king - on one he wears prick spurs, and on the other rowelled.

In the following centuries spurs became associated with rank and chivalry. We speak of "earning one's spurs" - a disgraced knight would have his spurs and sword broken as part of his punishment. A knight would wear gold or gilt spurs and an esquire silver .
Through the fifteenth Century rowels became smaller and spur necks became longer. This was so that the spur could reach around the flanchards ( horse armour or barding ) The mediaeval horseman who rode with legs extended forwards also needed spurs with longer necks which could still reach their horse's sides. Over the following centuries, rowels changed shape and size, some developed "jingle-bobs". In seventeenth Century Germany spurs developed multiple necks and rowels, but these were probably for ceremonial or dress use only.

Georgian spur and ends

 

17thC bronze spur
19thC Poltimore spur
18thC bronze spur
Very unusual Spur, not in the books
18thC drop spur
17thC spur mount
18thC bronze spur
17th Spur terminal
Roman period prick spur
17thC bronze spur
Very unusual decorated spur fragment - not in the reference books - Decoration suggests that it is really early
17thC Spur buckle
17thC spur end fragment with fitting attached
19thC spur(d)
19thC spur
15thC decorated spur fragment(d)
16thC spur rowel
17thC spur fitting
16thC spur rowel
16thC spur rowel
Unknown
15thC spur end fragment
15thC spur rowel
17thC spur rowel
18thC spur rowel
18thC spur rowel
14thC Multi- point spur rowell
16th/17thC spur buckle
18thC bronze spur
Spur buckle 1620-1680 (d)
Late medieval decorated spur fragment
18thC spur
17thC spur
17thC spur rowell
17thC spur
18th/19thC spur
17thC spur rowell
17thC spur
17thC spur
17thC spur
17thC spur
18th/19thC spur
Circa 1600 - 1700 spur buckle
17thC spur rowell
17thC spur rowell
16thC prick spur
Late medieval spur rowell
Roman prick spur fragment
Georgian spur buckle
1650 -1750 spur buckle
15thC spur rowel

Roman prick spur
Roman prick spur