Ethnographic Arms & Armour
 

Go Back   Ethnographic Arms & Armour > Discussion Forums > European Armoury
User Name
Password
FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 13th October 2019, 03:33 AM   #1
Hotspur
Member
 
Hotspur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Nipmuc USA
Posts: 384
Default Transitional, Victorian, Other?

Curiosity got the better of me with this one. I can't quite make out some facets of how this hilt was put together but I am somehow thinking it is of around 1700, or perhaps a little earlier. Then again, I may be way, way off. Either I did well, or paid a premium for a modernistic take on this form. A military smallsword, or ?????

Cheers
GC
Attached Images
         
Hotspur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 13th October 2019, 09:17 AM   #2
corrado26
Member
 
corrado26's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Black Forest, Germany
Posts: 708
Default

I am not sure but at least one mark is very similar to marks used by Spanish sword cuttlers of Toledo.
Attached Images
 
corrado26 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 13th October 2019, 02:38 PM   #3
Hotspur
Member
 
Hotspur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Nipmuc USA
Posts: 384
Default

Thank you. I am pretty sure the other mark references the Kingdom of Castile. I am having a hard time putting the hilt in the 16th century though. The acute point to the blade makes for it being a serious item, vs a decorator.

Cheers
GC
Hotspur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2019, 02:30 AM   #4
MitsuWa.
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 13
Default

Your hilt, handle, pommel and guard appear to be a casting rather than individual components from what I can see in the photos. What construction detail were you trying to figure out?
MitsuWa. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2019, 05:19 AM   #5
Hotspur
Member
 
Hotspur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Nipmuc USA
Posts: 384
Default

I don't believe the ferrules are cast to the grip, nor the plates and annelets part of the grip casting, with the pommel and peen blocks separate as well.

At any rate, such castings coming in by the mid 17th century.

I don't have a "twin" to compare it to, hence my being unconvinced of just about anything right now. Once in hand, I can be more sure of how many pieces comprise the hilt.

Cheers
GC

Last edited by Hotspur : 14th October 2019 at 05:40 AM.
Hotspur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2019, 01:37 PM   #6
fernando
Lead Moderator European Armoury
 
fernando's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal
Posts: 7,579
Default

Glen, you know i am not a connoisseur at all but, i dare say that, the emblem for Castile in its single form dates far back in time, later replaced by the 'composite' Leon y Castela coat of arms, more consonant in period with what should appear in this sword. Also i doubt that the Toledo smith mark suggested by Udo is the one in your blade.
So, without questioning the authenticity of your sword, i seem to question the originality of its marks ... unless they were a personalized feature.
But then again, don't pay much notice to my mumbo jumbo.
fernando is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2019, 03:41 PM   #7
mariusgmioc
Member
 
mariusgmioc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 1,294
Default

The mark is neither punched, nor engraved but crudely acid etched.

This makes me believe it is a 19th or even 20th century replica.

My two cents.
mariusgmioc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2019, 03:59 PM   #8
fernando
Lead Moderator European Armoury
 
fernando's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal
Posts: 7,579
Red face

An approach to the smith's mark would perhaps be this one; Switz ... but from the 12th century !


.
Attached Images
 
fernando is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2019, 04:35 PM   #9
Hotspur
Member
 
Hotspur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Nipmuc USA
Posts: 384
Default

Thanks guys.

Yes, even a very modern replica is certainly a possibility. As to an acid mark, I would say that is not too uncommon at the earlier timeline. The size/scale of the hilt could perhaps explain a decorative purpose but then again, the acute point not what one would expect for such.

A 20th century piece would be more likely to be a threaded union but once in hand I might see more clues. It could be all pot metal and cast iron .

Cheers
GC
Hotspur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2019, 04:39 PM   #10
Jens Nordlunde
Member
 
Jens Nordlunde's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Europe
Posts: 2,632
Default

Yes Fernando, but what about the crown, and is this blade not a bit early for this kind of sword?
Jens Nordlunde is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2019, 05:06 PM   #11
fernando
Lead Moderator European Armoury
 
fernando's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal
Posts: 7,579
Default

I know Jens. I am just suggesting that the Switz symbol might (might) be the basis for a later smith's imagination.
fernando is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2019, 07:26 PM   #12
Jim McDougall
Research Consultant
 
Jim McDougall's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Route 66
Posts: 7,658
Default

Some great observations here, and great catch by Udo on that majuscule A, as seen in the early Toledo markings. That marking on this sword of the OP looked almost like an oriental chop to me, and I didn't notice the A at first.

In my opinion, this sword is a pastiche recalling various elements of earlier classics, and in my thinking perhaps a Victorian accoutrement possibly worn in atavistic sense. The cast hilt is of course in the manner of small swords of the previous century, the screw in guard to the pommel in the manner of English swords in the 17th.
The bilobate guard is of pierced metal in the manner of 17th c. 'Pappenheimer' type rapier guards.
The blade is more 19th c. and the reduction to sharp point atypical of any small sword blade.

The markings I could not tell how applied, I thought etched but Marius sees acid etch, but either case very crude and approximating much earlier classic marks and arms. The crown over these devices alludes to earlier marking convention, but not correctly done.

It seems however an interesting item which may have had some interesting intent in its production and use.

Just my interpretation and opinions, certainly not anything conclusive.
Glen is a well seasoned collector and scholar so he surely sees more in this piece, and he will likely say more once he has it in hand.
Jim McDougall is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2019, 09:11 PM   #13
fernando
Lead Moderator European Armoury
 
fernando's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal
Posts: 7,579
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
Some great observations here, and great catch by Udo on that majuscule A, as seen in the early Toledo markings. That marking on this sword of the OP looked almost like an oriental chop to me, and I didn't notice the A at first...

Jim, Udo will certainly appreciate your cheering his catch; however and as i have already observed, i am afraid i may not concur with such assessment ... for reasons relating either with the association of this mark to Toledo smiths and for it being a majuscule A, which i find more like a symbol than an alphabetic letter. We are aware of the somehow enigmatic habit of Toledan espaderos, to often using initials other than those of their (known) names in their personal marks, a criteria that, in this specific case, appear in a few examples. Go figure why they use a A, or what looks like a A, in their punzones. But in any case so far distant from the mark in Glen's blade,


.
Attached Images
     
fernando is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2019, 09:59 PM   #14
Hotspur
Member
 
Hotspur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Nipmuc USA
Posts: 384
Default

The marks on this blade present other questions if a modern take on a period blade reconstruction. Disregarding the castle for a moment, if a modern mark meant to emulate a famous maker, wouldn't they choose something immediately familiar?

A second, for Jim. If it is a re-purposed 19th century blade, what might that origin be?

I will endeavor to shoot some clearer photos of the hilt construct itself and dialog a bit more about the blade cross section, etc.

Cheers
GC

Oh, re the guard screw. It is not so much the screw attachment as the type of screw, Also that the peen block may indeed be a nut but that alone would not dismiss a 17th century sword.
Hotspur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th October 2019, 10:13 PM   #15
Hotspur
Member
 
Hotspur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Nipmuc USA
Posts: 384
Default

I guess I see other things as well that give me pause. The quillion block itself is shaped for use, rather than just display. The perforations of the plates appear cast but were they cast with the guard or soldered in. More stuff I hope to determine once in hand. Some oil and probing in scraping any possible joins.

Cheers
GC
Hotspur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th October 2019, 03:18 AM   #16
Hotspur
Member
 
Hotspur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Nipmuc USA
Posts: 384
Default

Finally for now, an image I forgot to save that might absolutely label it a decorator. The way the marks read would be hilt up vs what we generally read with the design and marks to read blade up. A better look at the cast plates as well.

Cheers
GC
Attached Images
 
Hotspur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th October 2019, 04:23 PM   #17
fernando
Lead Moderator European Armoury
 
fernando's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal
Posts: 7,579
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
Finally for now, an image I forgot to save that might absolutely label it a decorator. The way the marks read would be hilt up vs what we generally read with the design and marks to read blade up...

You'd wish this were the only odd thing in it. Could always be that the markings were made by or for a later owner without such preoccupation; not impossible ... and encouraging .
fernando is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 15th October 2019, 06:26 PM   #18
Jim McDougall
Research Consultant
 
Jim McDougall's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Route 66
Posts: 7,658
Default

It seems well known that alphabetic characters are in themselves symbols, and it is often known that they are so well recognized that it is easily presumed that a symbol represents a given 'letter'. It would seem obvious that the association Udo drew to SOME of the marks used by Toledo smiths (as seen in the names paired with the SYMBOLS noted which RESEMBLE letter A). intended to show the SIMILARITY (as he specified) to these marks.
That the Toledo smiths did not always use their own initials as punzone marks has seemed pretty well known to those of us who have studied markings for some time.

My comment to Udo was in appreciation of his observant catch in recognizing these marks, and using the Toledo examples as illustration. I had seen the mark on the sword we are discussing, crudely executed and almost resembling an oriental 'chop'. My analogy is meant only visually, and I am not suggesting this represents a Chinese marking. It was intended much as Udo's entry, an analogy.

The majuscule LETTER A in medieval and later alphabets often is seen in a kind of labarum structure with the cross bar atop , and the central bar having a V appearing drop down as seen on these 'Toledo' marks. Various references show these letters A in different contexts in European markings, and in some cases, the 'A' was thought to indicate Augsburg.

As seen in the image of the well flourished 'A' the structure is similar to those used in Toledo, and curiously there is a fluer de lis, which I would point out was NOT exclusively French, but known in Spain and Italy as well as even Germany. Therefore this 'A' cannot be construed as 'French' alone

As for the position of the markings on Glen's blade, as he has aptly observed, these are not placed in the proper upright position typically seen in placement of such devices on blades.

The blade seems 19th c. to me, but I emphasize 'seems' as in perhaps some officers swords. The dramatic point does not seem in character.
I do not personally consider this a 'decorator' but perhaps a court or dress type accoutrement which may be viable as a weapon, but that remains to be seen.

I had thought of the pierced bilobate guard only in the more elaborate
Pappenheimer' hilts of the 17th c., however these type pierced guards were also in small sword epees as seen in the image.


Jury's still out
Attached Images
   

Last edited by Jim McDougall : 15th October 2019 at 07:21 PM. Reason: change word to ensure more accurate comment
Jim McDougall is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th October 2019, 06:56 PM   #19
Hotspur
Member
 
Hotspur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Nipmuc USA
Posts: 384
Default

In passing, Juan Perez writes "nice sword" and of seeing nothing particularly Spanish about it, and suggests the ducal crowns might point to Germany or Austria.

All of a sudden I'm going in six directions that briefly take me to the 1662 copper riots in Moscow. It was not the Russian marriage to a duke I was looking for though and found a castle in that Bavarian duchy coat of arms. Winding up perhaps not so strangely looking at schloss Hirschberg of Eichstätt. The castle burned in a lightning storm in 1632, only (from a German wiki) "Only 1670 to 1729, the castle was partly rebuilt, partly renewed." and what I'd like to see is this "A votive picture of the caretaker Lorenz von Helmstadt, which today hangs on the second floor of the staircase, conveys a picture of the destroyed structure."

Could it have been a sword of homage done at some point? I have come across such period swords relating the passing of a general (the name escapes me, Hanoverian iirc) in the 18th century.

I'll hold on more thought until it arrives.

Cheers
GC

Dang, I did not save the pictures, it was a sword made in homage for (etched to) Friedrich II Landgraf of Hesse-Kassel a dandy slotted hilt but I digress

Here was another blade etched to him. Again a sidebar.
Attached Images
 

Last edited by Hotspur : 15th October 2019 at 07:15 PM.
Hotspur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th October 2019, 09:34 PM   #20
Victrix
Member
 
Victrix's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Sweden
Posts: 332
Default

The upper quillon seems to be twisted sideways which must be a clue to its origins? The legs don’t seem to meet at the top bar in the majescule A.
Victrix is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15th October 2019, 10:58 PM   #21
fernando
Lead Moderator European Armoury
 
fernando's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal
Posts: 7,579
Default Checking on the meaning of symbol ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
It seems well known that alphabetic characters are in themselves symbols,

Dearest Jim, i will act as if you didn't drop my knowledge to even lower than what it really is. Definitely this is not your 'symbolic' style, nor are we too old to have start losing our discernment .
I will not digest possibilities based on esoterica, but do not avoid flying on plausible imagination.
What i figure to have a sense in Toledan smith marks within the discussed context, are those relative to the Toledo (guild) name, namely the upper bar for T for TOLEDO upon the 'said to be' letter A and the appendix L for TOLEDO on the lower right side.



.
Attached Images
 
fernando is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 16th October 2019, 01:26 AM   #22
Jim McDougall
Research Consultant
 
Jim McDougall's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Route 66
Posts: 7,658
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by fernando
Dearest Jim, i will act as if you didn't drop my knowledge to even lower than what it really is. Definitely this is not your 'symbolic' style, nor are we too old to have start losing our discernment .
I will not digest possibilities based on esoterica, but do not avoid flying on plausible imagination.
What i figure to have a sense in Toledan smith marks within the discussed context, are those relative to the Toledo (guild) name, namely the upper bar for T for TOLEDO upon the 'said to be' letter A and the appendix L for TOLEDO on the lower right side.



.



I have no idea what this means, but to get to the point I was making, which was that Udo drew a relatively free association comparison of some of the Toledo makers marks ( in Palomares) with the crude device on the OP blade here. In that perspective, there is a marked similarity between the two.

It seems that these crowned devices on either sides of the blade are meant to allude to either earlier makers marks or heraldic devices or both, but as they are added to a sword which does not as yet have supported context, it is hard to determine what they represent .

Since the comparison was made to suggest similarity to Toledo type markings, whether the Toledo mark noted was a letter or interpretation of another device, symbol or image is not necessarily important . It was meant only as an illustration to show similarity. It is however interesting in the notation that Toledo smiths used letters apparently in symbolism outside their normal alphabetic scope. Therefore, though some makers used letters matching their name, many did not so the letters had other meaning......I believe this is what we are both saying.

I agree, the esoterica involved in discussing those circumstances are far out of the scope of this discussion.

As Glen has well pointed out, these crudely applied markings on the OP blade appear to have been added to add character to the sword, and would appear to be artistic interpretations of classical heraldic or possibly makers symbols, or both.
As we cannot know what the artist was intending in these apparently contrived markings, we cannot say what they in fact represent, and suggestions are speculative. Still it is interesting to try to estimate what may be at hand, and discussion is good.
Jim McDougall is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16th October 2019, 12:54 PM   #23
fernando
Lead Moderator European Armoury
 
fernando's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal
Posts: 7,579
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
... In passing, Juan Perez writes "nice sword" and of seeing nothing particularly Spanish about it, and suggests the ducal crowns might point to Germany or Austria...

To be precise, if i dare, this would be, not a ducal coronet (crowns are different) but, one of a less ranked noble. Also the construction facade depicted could be that of a palace and not of a castle ... in theory.
It could be that the reason for all these features, 'strange' mark and all, is one of significant meaning. Why all those are pointing towards the 'wrong' side of the blade; client's imposition ... or the engraver not being professionally sword orientated .
fernando is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 16th October 2019, 01:45 PM   #24
Hotspur
Member
 
Hotspur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Nipmuc USA
Posts: 384
Default

Pick one

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crown_(heraldry)

https://www.idtg.org/archive/784-cr...ts-in-heraldry/

If someone has a better list, please share.

Cheers
GC
Hotspur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16th October 2019, 01:54 PM   #25
fernando
Lead Moderator European Armoury
 
fernando's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal
Posts: 7,579
Default

THIS IS the one i previously consulted :

.

Last edited by fernando : 16th October 2019 at 02:18 PM.
fernando is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 16th October 2019, 03:59 PM   #26
Hotspur
Member
 
Hotspur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Nipmuc USA
Posts: 384
Default

Thanks Fernando

As it lacks any indication of jewels, should we should be looking at a loyalist crown/coronet?

The building could certainly be linked to a location. My trail to Bavaria is probably presumptuous but was an interesting bit of reading yesterday.

Could the A really be an M?

Cheers
GC
Hotspur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16th October 2019, 05:41 PM   #27
fernando
Lead Moderator European Armoury
 
fernando's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal
Posts: 7,579
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
... As it lacks any indication of jewels, should we be looking at a loyalist crown/coronet?

I am afraid i don't know that much, Glen. In any case, precise rank will depend on which country, i would say.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
The building could certainly be linked to a location...

Strong possibility alright.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
Could the A really be an M?...

Or even no letter at all ?
fernando is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 17th October 2019, 03:18 PM   #28
Ibrahiim al Balooshi
Member
 
Ibrahiim al Balooshi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Buraimi Oman, on the border with the UAE
Posts: 4,359
Send a message via MSN to Ibrahiim al Balooshi
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
I have no idea what this means, but to get to the point I was making, which was that Udo drew a relatively free association comparison of some of the Toledo makers marks ( in Palomares) with the crude device on the OP blade here. In that perspective, there is a marked similarity between the two.

It seems that these crowned devices on either sides of the blade are meant to allude to either earlier makers marks or heraldic devices or both, but as they are added to a sword which does not as yet have supported context, it is hard to determine what they represent .

Since the comparison was made to suggest similarity to Toledo type markings, whether the Toledo mark noted was a letter or interpretation of another device, symbol or image is not necessarily important . It was meant only as an illustration to show similarity. It is however interesting in the notation that Toledo smiths used letters apparently in symbolism outside their normal alphabetic scope. Therefore, though some makers used letters matching their name, many did not so the letters had other meaning......I believe this is what we are both saying.

I agree, the esoterica involved in discussing those circumstances are far out of the scope of this discussion.

As Glen has well pointed out, these crudely applied markings on the OP blade appear to have been added to add character to the sword, and would appear to be artistic interpretations of classical heraldic or possibly makers symbols, or both.
As we cannot know what the artist was intending in these apparently contrived markings, we cannot say what they in fact represent, and suggestions are speculative. Still it is interesting to try to estimate what may be at hand, and discussion is good.



Excellent observation Jim and I would infuse https://www.bing.com/search?q=THE+M...IESR4N&pc=EUPP_ into the general mix here in terms of decorative style in the motif...noting that the Majescule A does not carry the horizontal line under the V shaped crossbar thus may not be Swiss ...Augsberg is a strong contender but so is reproduction in Gothic style as a sword of the 19th Century. After all what was the question at #1 ?

TRANSITIONAL VICTORIAN OR OTHER ?
Ibrahiim al Balooshi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17th October 2019, 04:34 PM   #29
Jim McDougall
Research Consultant
 
Jim McDougall's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Route 66
Posts: 7,658
Default

Thank you for the notes Ibrahiim, , and the majuscule A is primarily a point of reference for what this curiously applied marking is TAKEN from. This sword appears to be a soundly intended sword, but made in representation of earlier forms in a 'historismus' sense (in my opinion).
The markings seem to be a mélange of heraldic devices which are added to add a classic character, but in a manner outside the conventions of typical blade decoration.

As the sword has not yet arrived with Glen, this is based only on photos and hypothetical supposition, and the markings are essentially anybody's guess as they do not (as far as known) have context to properly evaluate them.
As the sword itself is a 'representation' it is hard to imagine the exact models or inspirations for its elements, and of course 'markings'.

As I mentioned earlier, Glen is known for his keen eye in observing weapons, and it will be interesting to have his physical examination of the sword itself at hand. His 'curiosity' (as he describes) is seldom without plausible purpose.
Jim McDougall is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17th October 2019, 04:56 PM   #30
Hotspur
Member
 
Hotspur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Nipmuc USA
Posts: 384
Default

So, some first impressions with the sword in hand. No way I would suspect it to be a Victorian or later attempt. The hilt is comprised (as I suspected) as several individual pieces, joined and peened. The castings of the writhen elements actually quite delicate, with the grip sounding as not too hollow a shell. Speaking only to the hilt, the annelets are large enough to treat as a rapier grip. The grip by itself between the ferrules is 3". Photos in hand to follow.

Now some nitty gritty.

The weight is considerable at 2.5 pounds (spring fish De-liar scale) eek, right? Well, hold on here, mixed dimensions

Blade length is at 33" as shown.
Width at the guard 27 mm
Thickness at the guard 7 mm
A very linear forte distal
Thickness at the pob still 6mm a fighting distance from the guard pob at roughly 4"
The blade (in my mind) shortened from a blade that was likely about 40" long at its original use
Thickness at the point 2.5 mm
The blade has the feel of varnish and the clank of a sword with good spring. Perfectly ovoid lenticular.

Sorry, no spreadsheet. I judge swords as fencible or not. At a pound more than a light magic spadroon, it is still at the range of what a longer rapier might tip 3 lbs or more. Instantly appraised before I opened the USPS priority box, I was under no allusion it would be a box of air, as felt with an epee. I feel it was a marriage sometime before 1700 but folk are welcome to disagree. For me, as with so many, the questions of its history will always be there. My take is someone wanted a weapon, not a decoration.

Pictures and more thoughts to come

Cheers
GC
Hotspur is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump



All times are GMT. The time now is 12:08 PM.


Powered by: vBulletin Version 3.0.3
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Posts are regarded as being copyrighted by their authors and the act of posting material is deemed to be a granting of an irrevocable nonexclusive license for display here.