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Old 18th November 2012, 10:38 AM   #1
Tim Simmons
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Cool German parade sword

Not all of us have the opportunity to travel so I think it is good to show interesting things from around the world for all to see. I was lucky and made a visit to the- German History Museum Berlin- where this most interesting parade sword is displayed. Quite difficult to get a good picture of, being stuck at the back of a right angle of display glass. I could not get a picture of the information. I would imagine it is some form of renaissance city state regalia and would have be most expensive.

Truely fantastic?
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Old 18th November 2012, 11:06 AM   #2
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OK, I am stumped?! This is the snout of a saw-fish, right? The pics are dark, so perhaps I'm wrong? Sawfish snouts were used in the Polynesian colonies (Kingsmill Isles for sure, among others) to make wicked swords, but I know some sailors also made ship-board bric-a-brac swords not really meant for combat. How on earth did such a finely wrought hilt end up with such an odd attachment?

Actually, looking at the grip, with its fur tufts, I'm beginning to wonder if this might be a composite sword perhaps made by indiginous tribes using left-over parts?? This is a weird one, but fascinating!!
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Old 18th November 2012, 11:13 AM   #3
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I know there was a movement in Europe during the 16th-18th c. where naturally occurring "media" were being used, i.e. narwhale tusks for sword grips on claymores, but perhaps I'm still out in the weeds...
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Old 18th November 2012, 02:25 PM   #4
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Wow, I've not seen something like that before! At first I wondered if that was the actual blade or just the scabbard?

A shame you couldn't take a photo of the accompanying information, but perhaps there is mention of it on the museum's website....

Update...

Yes there is, and a clearer photo, but not much in the way of information sadly.

Production

1551/1600 (Gef)

Measurements

Width: 42 (Parierstange) cm
Length: 169,3 cm
Length: 114,5 (Klinge) cm

Material / Technique

Eisen, Holz
gekehlt

Here is the museum page for this sword

Hope this helps, and thanks for posting the photos.
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Last edited by Shimmerxxx : 18th November 2012 at 02:39 PM. Reason: update
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Old 18th November 2012, 03:01 PM   #5
fernando
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A bizarre example indeed but ... why the attribution 'German parade sword' ?
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Old 18th November 2012, 03:28 PM   #6
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I imagine because-

1. It is from the Museum of German History. A walk round display from ancient times to reunification.

2. It would not be good against amour but you could slice into peasants.
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Old 18th November 2012, 04:09 PM   #7
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I can't imagine many people in the day would have seen or even known about the saw fish and its bill.

The pure dramatic effect in any parade would have many in awe and many with their heads in a spin.
Considering the superstition surrounding the seas and its "Monsters", had anyone known what it was, to see it in a Bearing sword of their lords would certainly leave them thinking more on his power over even the darkest creatures in the ocean.

It looks great!

A great share, thanks.

Gav
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Old 18th November 2012, 08:16 PM   #8
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I agree with Mark and Gav, Europe in the 18th century and somewhat earlier had distinct affinities with exotica and esoterica, and the age of exploration had provided fascinating fodder for these. Ships returning from exotic places carried many such items and as noted, placement in such ceremonial mounts for a ceremonial or parade type item seems a likely explanation if this can be forensically supported as to age . There were quite a few 'bizarre' and shocking fabrications of these kinds, the fable 'Iron Maiden' among various 'dungeon instruments' notwithstanding, whose purported histories are questionable at best.
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