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Old 18th October 2017, 04:19 PM   #16
Lead Moderator European Armoury
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal
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Old 6th November 2007, 04:25 AM

Posted by:
Jim McDougall
EAA Research Consultant
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Route 66

Hi Jeff,
Thank you for posting the reference on the Peter Munich blade markings, and I think you are right in these appearing in kind, much later into the 18th and 19th century and the astral figures do appear often on British officers sabres as you have noted. I have always thought that these figures on these blades in these later times not only had to do with quality symbolism, but likely even more to do with Masonic lore. In those times officers were of course also well established gentry and often nobility, and were of course also often quite active in Freemasonry, where much of this symbolism remained well in place.

Very good point about the trade blades from Solingen, or for that matter Runkle who was situated in England, and their wide distribution. I think that in America these blades did get there in some degree of course via British presence. Best source for examples here would probably be Neumann, "Swords and Blades of the American Revolution".

Interesting note that you bring up on the sword held by the arm in the cloud being a 'scimitar' as described in heraldry. It seems that these sabres and for that matter the 'Oriental' fashion deeply influenced many European forces in warfare in Eastern Europe against Turkish forces, and in many cases the 'exotic' imagery was adopted in degree. One interesting case is with a few of the Scottish mercenaries who adopted the curved sabre blades in their basket hilts, terming these hybrids 'turcael', if I recall.

With the mention of the Scottish blades, it brings to mind that it seems invariably that the basket hilt blades were German, and presumably mostly from Solingen. Needless to say, that brings us to the Andrea Ferrara myth!!

All the best,

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