Chainmail for Jehan

Any research done in relation to the period of Les Misérables, whether for fanfiction or fanart purposes or otherwise.
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Gervais
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Chainmail for Jehan

Postby Gervais » Wed Jul 16, 2014 7:03 pm

So I had a cracky headcanon that Jehan wore chain mail to the barricade, but then wondered if he could actually have had access to at least a mail shirt. Which leads to this. Yep.

Going with a personal headcanon that the Changer is part of a ring of clothing-suppliers, and that one of said suppliers has supplied Les Amis before, he could have just bought a used one, such as this.
I want one.
But using a source that's not canon seems like an easy way out, even if that does seem like something he'd have and have access to. Even assuming that he would associate with the Changer himself seems too easy; it's assuming that they would talk to each other along with assuming that the man somehow has access to armor from India/Asia.

So let's look at Jehan himself. He's the only son of well-off parents, so there's money for these endeavors.
If Hugo had only made his barricade literally in 1848, Prouvaire would have had possible access to a "bulletproof vest" of mail from Ireland. But Hugo puts us in 1832. So I guess we're going back to a blacksmith or Jehan making it himself

Supposedly, so long as you have the time and materials, chain mail isn't actually that hard to make. This is a decent tutorial. There's no reason a blacksmith wouldn't be able to make the rings at least, I wouldn't think, and the electric drill bit used here could probably be replaced with a crank or just turning the rod by hand if Jehan decided to make it himself. I have no clue as to what the price would be, though, or whether or not a smith would teach him how to make the thing if he wanted the Do It Yourself Route (Google Books is empty of 19th-century How To's for this).

Of course, he could always just buy a shirt like at the beginning of this post, but then the question is who would he get it from. He could have other friends with the right connection, I guess, but that doesn't seem like a really solid answer.
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deHavilland
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Re: Chainmail for Jehan

Postby deHavilland » Wed Jul 30, 2014 1:41 am

Interesting, Gervais! I sort of picture a very Lord of the Rings-esque moment, where he gets gored on a bayonet** and is totally fine -- only to lift up his shirt and reveal the mail underneath.

The first thing that came to mind for me when I thought about how he might acquire some mail came from the whole "only son of a well-off family" part of the equation. It's not impossible that a family member, possibly his father or perhaps an eccentric uncle from whom some of Jehan's sartorial choices are lifted, was a collector. The classic image of a well-kept estate with suits of armor on display could be another possible source to lift from.

**chainmail = not really necessarily very good protection against prodding, thrusting, stabbing or goring from something with as fine a point as a bayonet.
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Rachelle
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Re: Chainmail for Jehan

Postby Rachelle » Wed Jul 30, 2014 12:59 pm

Could it have been a family heirloom?
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Gervais
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Re: Chainmail for Jehan

Postby Gervais » Sat Aug 02, 2014 9:54 pm

I forgot how skinny a bayonet was. Though a regular shirt wouldn't do well either in that situation, so...Divine intervention! Or a breastplate over it. Cavalries were using plates until the 18th century as defense against distance bullets if you want to believe Wikipedia, and Cuirassiers were doing kind of okay with their thing against the bayonets in Napoleonic wars. So it could possibly still happen,just in a slightly different way. :wink:
deHavilland wrote: It's not impossible that a family member, possibly his father or perhaps an eccentric uncle from whom some of Jehan's sartorial choices are lifted, was a collector. The classic image of a well-kept estate with suits of armor on display could be another possible source to lift from.

Rachelle wrote:Could it have been a family heirloom?

DEAR LORD YES. I am so behind this, especially the eccentric uncle with a collection because that just strikes me as just Jehan-ish (more so than having a family member be a a soldier during the Napoleonic wars, which I was going to say could be the reason he would have a cuirass) but maybe there's a family history of eccentric uncles whose collections have gathered over the years and now this is becoming more of a Meta than Research thread, whoops.
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