Abbey Museum Musketeer stained glass

Musketeer Makeover

After completing the fundraising for the conservation of the medieval and Victorian Stained glass in the Abbey Church and a window of one of the Three Magi above the door to the Abbey Museum, focus has turned to fundraising for the conservation of smaller, but still significant, panels that are currently in the reserve collection.

The first of these is a small but beautifully made panel depicting a Musketeer. This panel dates to the 17th century and probably comes from southern Germany.  I am very happy to announce that funds have now been raised for this window’s conservation. Thank you to everyone who generously donated towards this project or attended one of our special fundraising Trivia Nights dedicated to the stained glass conservation program.

Of course, the most celebrated and romanticised musketeers in history were the famous quartet immortalised by French author Alexandre Dumas whose swashbuckling novel in 1844 was set in the dangerous times for the scheming Cardinal Richelieu and King Louis XIII.

The Musketeers

Who were the Musketeers?

Technically, any soldiers armed with muskets could be called musketeers. But the Musketeers of the Guard or King’s Musketeers made famous by Dumas were a fighting company of the military branch of the Royal Household of the French monarchy.

Abbey Museum Stained Glass Musketeer window

In our panel he is depicted armed with a flintlock and carries a forked rest used to steady the heavy gun whilst firing. He also wears bright blue bloomers and the typical cavalier’s hat with an impressive blue feather.  The coat of arms suggests a southern German family’s heraldry. The Musketeer panel is temporarily on display in the Museum’s armour display and will undergo conservation later in the year.

Rosalia – our next Project

Our next target is $3500 for another small Renaissance panel of a female saint, described in John Ward’s catalogue to be St Rosalia, although this attribution may require further investigation. The panel is 17th century and is probably Swiss or German. It is a stunning little panel, where a female saint sinks to her knees backed by clouds in dove grey and rose-pink.  If you would like to support our ongoing Stained Glass Conservation Project please donate here.