Sallet Helmets became popular throughout medieval Europe especially in Italy (Milan) and Germany (Augsburg and Nuremberg) where the helmets were made by the Great Armor manufacturers of the time were based.
There were many variations of the Sallet Helmet – various designs of the ‘sallet helmet’ could be seen in the different regions and countries of Europe.
There were many variants of the sallet helmet throughout Europe due to the different countries take on the design and there were also local variants. Different time periods also produced different designs although usually the differences were small.
For example in the year 1460 historians describe how the Italian version of the Sallet became open-faced and more curved, this development helped provide all round better visibility for medieval archers and this style became the helmet of choice for this type of foot soldier.
However these changes were not perfect as the helmet was opened up which made the soldiers face more visible and open to a strike, for this reason more front line troops who needed more protection preferred a more re-enforced Sallet helmet with re-enforced plate and a deep visor – this type of visor had many small holes for ventilation and was known as a ‘Bellows’ type Sallet helmet.
Around the middle of the 15th Century a new German style of Sallet helmet appeared that was also rounded in it’s appearance but less so than the Sallet helmet produced in Italy.
Later German Sallets also had a longer tail with more lames that protected the back of the neck. There were several versions produced that covered the face and that also had visors.
The popularity of the Sallet helmet began to decline and at the start of the 16th Century, in favor of the Burgonet and Close Helm helmet.
Although the popularity of the Sallet helmet declined a heavily re-enforced version of the helmet was still used at medieval tournaments.
Sallet helemts could be worn with or without an aventail or visor.
In it’s various forms the Sallet was one of the most important and popular medieval helmets produced during in the Middle Ages.