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The targe was the highlanders' main defense in battle from the time of 15th century until the Battle of Culloden, by which time the increasing use of cannon in warfare resulted in them becoming less effective in protecting the bearer. The targe was approximately 50cm in diameter and was originally constructed by joining together, with wooden pegs, two circular wooden layers set at right angles to each other and covered, on the front, with heavy cowhide. This was usually embossed (carved) with intricate designs, often with celtic patterns, and pinned to the wooden base with hundreds of domed brass nails. The central boss frequently had a provision for screwing in a metal spike of 30cm in length, thus changing the nature of the shield from defensive to offensive.
The reverse was covered with deerskin and had some form of arm and hand straps.
Our targes are covered with heavy weight cowhide and the designs are all tooled by hand. The backs are covered with calfskin and have a sheath for the steel spike which may be screwed into the central boss for display purposes.
Please note: These targes are designed for display purposes only and are not suitable for use in reenactment demonstrations.
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