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Old 24th December 2020, 05:02 PM   #1
corrado26
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Default Iron cut small sword with golden inlays

I want to show you a nice small sword which is made probably in France around 1750. Its blade with a triangled cross-section is without any decoration. May be there are some comments?
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Old 24th December 2020, 08:24 PM   #2
Jim McDougall
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Wow! Udo that is a gorgeous sword! and I would agree with being French and mid 18th c. if not a bit earlier. Russeted and gilt hilts with neo classical themes were popular then, and the bilobate guard corresponds to examples I see in Aylward (1945).
While small swords and rapiers seem to have held to tradition in Italy and far more so in Spain, it seems French swordsmanship dictated innovations in 'faster' blades and this looks like a 'fighting' sword. Those pas d'ane are entirely functional, not vestigial as later in the century.
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Old 24th December 2020, 10:17 PM   #3
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I first looked at the photos and only then I read your posting.

But the first thing when I saw the photos was me to think of an 18th to early 19th century French smallsword.

Very nice example!
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Old 24th December 2020, 10:52 PM   #4
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Very nice gentleman's smallsword! As Jim points out, I believe mid- to late 18th based on the large pas d'ane. The blade certainly looks made for business during a time when just walking to the pub could get one set upon by street thugs. Great find, Udo!
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Old 28th December 2020, 07:58 PM   #5
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Default Blade style

I only wish to add this to the discussion:
you will see that the fuller of the wide face of the blade (or the lower face as it is sometimes described) is actually a constant width groove, not a hollow with a decreasing radius.
This is a product of the rolling machine invented by the Huguenots in Solingen in the early 1600s and used to produce colichemarde blades.
There are a few regular (non colichemarde) smallswords that feature this style of blade but generally they feature less expensive hilts as they were much cheaper to make than the traditional 'three similar faced ' blades.
I am not, however, saying that inexpensive hilts always featured this style of blade, rather the reverse, that these blades have, to my knowledge so far, always been seen on base metal hilts.
The gilding on this hilt is particularly attractive though, despite being a base metal product.
ps
If anyone has, or has seen, a colichemarde blade that doesn't feature this constant width groove, I would really appreciate a look.
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Old 29th December 2020, 08:13 AM   #6
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This is a very interesting post, thanks a lot.
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Old 29th December 2020, 09:26 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanspaceman
I only wish to add this to the discussion:
you will see that the fuller of the wide face of the blade (or the lower face as it is sometimes described) is actually a constant width groove, not a hollow with a decreasing radius.
This is a product of the rolling machine invented by the Huguenots in Solingen in the early 1600s and used to produce colichemarde blades.
There are a few regular (non colichemarde) smallswords that feature this style of blade but generally they feature less expensive hilts as they were much cheaper to make than the traditional 'three similar faced ' blades.
I am not, however, saying that inexpensive hilts always featured this style of blade, rather the reverse, that these blades have, to my knowledge so far, always been seen on base metal hilts.
The gilding on this hilt is particularly attractive though, despite being a base metal product.
ps
If anyone has, or has seen, a colichemarde blade that doesn't feature this constant width groove, I would really appreciate a look.


The above small sword has no colichemarde blade, almost all colichemarde blades do not have a fuller, can you please explain what you mean.

best,
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Old 29th December 2020, 02:39 PM   #8
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Default explanation

Quote:
Originally Posted by cornelistromp
The above small sword has no colichemarde blade, almost all colichemarde blades do not have a fuller, can you please explain what you mean.


I've re-read my text and cannot find any ambiguity, but I will attempt to express my statement in more comprehensive terms as it is a fascinating topic but not specifically pertinent to the original post:
the blade in question IS NOT a colichemarde...obviously, but it does feature a constant width groove on the wide face - or lower/bottom face - that is a characteristic of every colichemarde I have seen to date.
It is virtually impossible - even today - to design a machine that will mechanically grind a hollow/fuller, that has a decreasing radius, in a single pass.
It is possible to use a roller to produce a constant width groove.
The stock triangular (cross-section) material was placed, wide face up, into a mould cut into a block, and the roller forced the metal down and formed two small - pre. shaped - hollows as it pressed a groove into the wide face. Obviously, this was done while the metal was hot and malleable.
That block with a mould cut into it was used as early as the Middle-Ages to produce a version of the Estoc, but in that case the pressure came by hammering a 'fuller' (this is the name of the tool and it gave its name to the result) down onto the metal. We used the same principle to produce early Brown Bess bayonets.
Exactly why this machine was used to produce colichemardes is something I have yet to ascertain and it fascinates me; hence my request for sight of anomalies.
There are a few colichemardes that feature the groove extending all the way to the top of the forte although most end at the lower shoulder.
I'm sorry if I have hi-jacked this thread; I do not wish to clutter it with an entirely different subject. Perhaps the admin could separate it, with a link to a fresh thread, in case folk would like to indulge in this new and previously ignored research of mine. I would be grateful for all the input and assistance I can get.
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Old 29th December 2020, 06:23 PM   #9
fernando
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanspaceman
... I'm sorry if I have hi-jacked this thread; I do not wish to clutter it with an entirely different subject. Perhaps the admin could separate it, with a link to a fresh thread, in case folk would like to indulge in this new and previously ignored research of mine. I would be grateful for all the input and assistance I can get.

Hopefully Udo doesn't mind (as confirmed) that you carry on posting considerations connected with blades particulars, including his own.
But if you prefer, you may always start a thread to evolve on the subject.


.

Last edited by fernando : 30th December 2020 at 10:35 AM. Reason: info update
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Old 29th December 2020, 08:35 PM   #10
Jim McDougall
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Actually to me it seems almost unusual to see one of this genre of small sword in this period with other than colichemarde blade, so it does seem salient as far as study of the sword type. Most interesting discussion on the colichemarde blades in my opinion, it would be great to see one of similar hilt form with one of these popular blades to compare, but a discussion of this blade form in specalized thread would be most interesting as well.
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Old 30th December 2020, 10:40 AM   #11
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Udo, can you show us a picture of the entire blade, specially the side with the groove ?
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