Desiderius Helmschmid, German, documented 1513–1579
Jörg Sigman, German, 1527–1601
Shield of Philip II, Augsburg, 1549–1550 and 1552
gilt and damascened steel; brass and leather
Patrimonio Nacional, Real Armería, Madrid

The German shield at left was apparently made in competition with Filippo Negroli, the famed Milanese armorer who specialized in armor with raised, or embossed, decoration. On the upper part of the rim, a bull lunges to gore a warrior holding a tiny shield labeled "Negrol" (written backward)—Helmschmid’s boast that he could surpass his rival. In the circular inscription at the center, Desiderius proudly describes himself as "Armorer to His Imperial Majesty." The four medallions depict the Triumphs of Wisdom, Peace, War, and Strength.