Bronze toy knight, Europe, 13th-14th century CE. The Walters Art Museum
This evocative little figure is a bronze toy knight and one of the earliest known toy soldiers, made in Europe sometime between the 13th and 14th centuries. Requiring little skill, time, or investment to produce, these must have been fairly common toys for better-off children, but the ephemeral nature of childhood possessions mean that few have survived into the present. The wooden lance is a modern reproduction.