Boiled leather

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Boiled leather, sometimes called cuir bouilli, was historically a popular construction material for armour. It consists of thick leather, boiled in water (some sources hold that oil and wax was used as well). The boiling causes the leather to change composition to become hard an brittle, gaining some resemblance to the properties of wood. Since the leather remains flexible and strechable a short time after the boiling, forming it to the needs of the armourer is quite easy, making it a cheap, light and convenient alternative to bronze, steel and other historical materials.