Glencoe Folk Museum
This beautiful replica object gives us a glimpse of Highland battles from the late sixteenth century until the mid-eighteenth century. In fact, Highland targes were the last type of shields to be used in battle in Europe.
The spike on the front shows that the targe on which this replica is based would have been used for attack as well as defence. The more intricate the design, the higher the status of the soldier.
Targes were reportedly a standard part of equipment and Prince Charles Edward Stuart – better known as Bonnie Prince Charlie – is known to have requested more for the battle of Culloden in 1746 due to a shortage of equipment.
There is also evidence to suggest that some Highlanders abandoned their targes on the long night march immediately before the Battle of Culloden.
Original targes are treated very carefully because of their age and fragility. Many museums make replica objects so that visitors can handle them and get a better impression of their tactile qualities and weight.