Ethnographic Arms & Armour

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-   -   Italian? Rapier (http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=23432)

Foxbat 6th December 2017 10:34 PM

Italian? Rapier
 
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I am not sure about the origin of that one. I am betting on Italian, but open to suggestions.

Victrix 7th December 2017 06:43 PM

Hi Foxbat,

Not too familar with these type of swords but the curious insect/skeleton design on the guard and quillons make me think of the early schiavonas. So Venice or elsewhere in Northern Italy could be a good bet!

mariusgmioc 7th December 2017 07:05 PM

Magnificent piece, and yes, it looks Italian to me too, albeit the hilt is more in the French style.

PS: On second thoughts, maybe not Italian. The ricasso is very different from what I have seen on other Italian blades. May it be a piece of historicism?! :shrug:

fernando 7th December 2017 08:47 PM

A fascinating example, that's for sure :cool: .

Foxbat 7th December 2017 09:54 PM

This decoration style is often called cartilaginous.

Another uncommon feature is the full length fuller. There are some symbols and marks inside it.

Victrix 8th December 2017 01:58 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat
This decoration style is often called cartilaginous.

Another uncommon feature is the full length fuller. There are some symbols and marks inside it.


Can we see the symbols and the marks?

Foxbat 8th December 2017 08:18 PM

I will try, but they are hard to see.

fernando 9th December 2017 12:45 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat
I will try, but they are hard to see.

Even being hard to see, faded inscription style and font used may provide a clue :o .

mariusgmioc 9th December 2017 08:42 PM

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A rapier wit a strikingly similar blade was sold in an auction as being German. :shrug:

Foxbat 9th December 2017 09:04 PM

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It was hard to photograph, but here are some pictures. There's double-oval structure at the beginning, followed by many dots and some odd looking symbols, that could be characters, then another such structure, terminated by the anchor-like symbol comprised of dots.

Victrix 9th December 2017 09:06 PM

I have a Spanish sword with a blade not too dissimilar to those. Could be a generic style? I would struggle to classify the German sword above as a rapier. Also the blades were typically made in a fairly small number of centres and sold all over to cutlers who fitted hilts to the blades according to their customers’ preferences. There were guilds which separated the trades of the bladesmiths and the cutlers.

http://www.thearma.org/essays/How_W...tm#.WixOy6ZwGhA

I found this site which is interesting.

Foxbat 9th December 2017 09:13 PM

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mariusgmioc
A rapier wit a strikingly similar blade was sold in an auction as being German. :shrug:


That is not an uncommon blade structure, I in fact own several of them, for instance this one. Here it also contains the wolf-like symbol (although some people suggested it might be a cow... :) ), possibly confirming the German origin, however, I belong to the school that considers the hilt the primary part of a rapier.

Victrix is, of course, correct, as we know, rapiers were assembled from components, made by more than one master. That usually involved the blade, the hilt and very commonly the grip - each requiring very different set of skills.

fernando 10th December 2017 12:06 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat
... I belong to the school that considers the hilt the primary part of a rapier...

Could it be bacause hilts have in their 'favour' one attribute, which is the esthetical component ? However is the blade, the part that swordsmen primarily depend upon. Is it wrong to say that blade smiths names (and marks) were more in the limelight ? :o

Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat
...Victrix is, of course, correct, as we know, rapiers were assembled from components, made by more than one master...

Not only rapiers, but also ;)

mariusgmioc 10th December 2017 03:22 PM

Thank you for posting more photos... but... maybe you can post better ones?! :o

I know how difficult it is to take good relevant photos without professional equipment, but with some good daylight light and the right angle maybe it is possible.

Regards,

Marius

Foxbat 10th December 2017 05:16 PM

I used to have a pretty good photo setup, but now have to rely more on the phone. I will try later, but the blade has very strong dark patina, so don't know how much better I can do it.

urbanspaceman 10th December 2017 08:41 PM

blade markings
 
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There doesn't appear to be bold markings present; maybe a shift in the lighting angle will show them up.

urbanspaceman 10th December 2017 08:47 PM

ps
 
Magnificent piece by the way. Considering that six months ago I had no connection with the sword world I am rapidly becoming desirous of a variety of examples, and a rapier like yours is on the list.

Foxbat 10th December 2017 09:18 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanspaceman
Magnificent piece by the way. Considering that six months ago I had no connection with the sword world I am rapidly becoming desirous of a variety of examples, and a rapier like yours is on the list.


Thank you! I did processing similar to what you did, it made the detail somewhat more visible, thanks for the hint! :)

There appear to be some characters along the way, perhaps things like I, L or Y. And the termination symbol looks interesting.

Foxbat 10th December 2017 09:31 PM

Regarding the oval detail - the arches with "teeth" were very typical of Italian marks from the 15th all the way to the 18th centuries, but I was not able to find this particular combination.

Perhaps an eye with eyelashes around it?


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