This helmet is the earliest surviving example of Renaissance armor "all'antica" (in the antique style). The helmet represents the head of the Nemean Lion, whose pelt was worn as a headdress and cloak by the mythological hero Hercules. Hercules was frequently portrayed in Renaissance art as a symbol of indomitable strength, courage, and perseverance. The gilt-copper lion's head is mounted over a plain steel sallet made specifically for this purpose. The helmet retains its original padded canvas lining.