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Old 8th February 2014, 08:34 AM   #1
cornelistromp
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Default dagger series nr4 THE BALLOCK

I call this dagger THE Ballock , because it is one of the earliest and perhaps the finest of its kind .
This dagger came between the end of the 14th century and the middle of the 15th century. it consists of four parts;
a burr or walnut often blackened grip outof one piece with two large bulbous protrusions.
a simple guard plate.
a multistage blade often with a reinforced point.
and a washer .
The theory behind this multistage blade is that it has a blunt back and only one effective cutting edge so it could qualify in the early 15th century as a knife and therefor was allowed within the city walls, daggers were in fact prohibited.
The point is reinforced , this has nothing to do with the stabbing through armour (a Panzerstecher) but is for security for the point if you accidentally drop it.

These daggers are immense in size , around 40cm long with big grips.
Of this type are today still examples found in ancient canals in the Netherlands, probably thrown into the water by the city guard.

In art , the finest example of this type can be seen in a painting by Hieronymus Bosch , the arrest of Christ .
very clear is the blunt back, the multistage Blade and large bulbous balls.

herewith three exemples from my collection.

best,
jasper
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Old 8th February 2014, 08:41 AM   #2
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Jheronimus Bosch, the arrest of christ.
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Old 8th February 2014, 11:24 AM   #3
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Extremely fine pieces, Jasper. Thanks for sharing this treasure.
Great illustration of an example by Bosch; Jesus doesn't stand a chance at its sight .
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Old 8th February 2014, 11:37 AM   #4
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Here is a ballock dagger of the 15th century possibly found in the center of Hamburg, Germany. At display at Museum für Hamburgische Geschichte (hamburgmuseum). Unfortunately there are no further details available as it is an old archaeological find without written record.
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Old 8th February 2014, 03:41 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andi
Here is a ballock dagger of the 15th century possibly found in the center of Hamburg, Germany. At display at Museum für Hamburgische Geschichte (hamburgmuseum). Unfortunately there are no further details available as it is an old archaeological find without written record.


thank you for the example, precisely the same type.
nice to see the dating, 15th century
Heribert Seitz dated this type in Blankwaffen I, end of the 14th century .
I think this is probably on the early side, this type occurred between 1390 and 1460.
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Old 10th February 2014, 05:26 PM   #6
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I HAVE ALWAYS LIKED THESE DAGGERS AND FOUND THE NAME AMUSING MANKIND OFTEN SEEMS TO HAVE LIKED THE IDEA OF HIS WEAPONS RESEMBELING HIS PRIDE AND JOY. I HAD NOT SEEN THE BLADE CONFIGURATION LIKE THE FIRST 3 EXAMPLES THEY ALMOST LOOK LIKE THE HEAD OF A PIKE OR SPIKE OFF A WAR HAMMER. THEY APPEAR ROBUST ENOUGH TO PENETRATE LEATHER OR HEAVY CLOTHES PERHAPS EVEN LIGHT ARMOR. I WONDER IF THERE WAS ANY PROBLEM WITH THE BLADE GETTING HUNG UP WHEN USED BECAUSE OF ITS SHAPE. I AM ENJOYING YOUR POSTS AS IT BRINGS ME NEW KNOWLEGE AND IS WELL ILLUSTRATED AND RESEARCHED , WELL DONE.
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Old 11th February 2014, 07:18 PM   #7
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Default mine

Hello,
so I like to share mine as well.
It s one of the shorter ones and has a type of composed grip ending in some brass plates. The quillon / guard is decorated with some carvings and the ballocks with a sun or star shaped.
The item was found in Rotterdam, what the seller told me.
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Old 11th February 2014, 07:25 PM   #8
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Hello,
so I like to share mine as well.
It s one of the shorter ones and has a type of composed grip ending in some brass plates. The quillon / guard is decorated with some carvings and the ballocks with a sun or star shaped.
The item was found in Rotterdam, what the seller told me.
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Old 11th February 2014, 07:27 PM   #9
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sorry for the doubler
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Old 12th February 2014, 03:35 PM   #10
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Hi Junker,

thanks for the nice example, the grip seems to be a (later) restauration but all the brass parts are Original around 1450.
here's a picture of a similar excavated grip with balls with the sun, as seen on the painting the arrrest of christ.

best,
jasper
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Old 13th February 2014, 09:34 AM   #11
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Hi,

the grip shoud be the original but it is to much restored.
Thanks for your picture with the grip and sun.
Is it also from the netherlands ?

Dirk
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Old 13th February 2014, 10:26 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by junker
Hi,

the grip shoud be the original but it is to much restored.
Thanks for your picture with the grip and sun.
Is it also from the netherlands ?

Dirk



Hi Dirk,

yes found in the Netherlands, exact location is unknown to me.

The reason I think the grip is redone is because all ballock daggers have a grip made ​​outof one piece of wood.
when you see the grain at your dagger, the protrusions are glued to the handle.
further, the protrusions are not ball-shaped and the recess in the brass parry rod does not fit exactly appropriate the wooden grip between the balls. at your dagger the recess is smaller.
please compare other Ballock daggers for this.


The wood used here is also unusual for a ballock.

best,
Jasper

Last edited by cornelistromp : 13th February 2014 at 10:38 AM.
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Old 20th September 2015, 11:51 AM   #13
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Please, more information about the blade shape shown with the first 3 daggers shown. Thank you.
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Old 25th September 2015, 01:53 AM   #14
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Default The Bollock or Ballack dagger.

The article at http://www.myarmoury.com/feature_spot_bd.html is well worth viewing...

Meanwhile three pictures illustrating medieval art which includes bollock or ballack daggers...or variants.
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Old 25th September 2015, 04:17 AM   #15
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and I thought to include a few more...The first picture shows a set of differing styles for comparison...Of special interest is the fragmentary set of Bollock daggers from the Mary Rose, and the amazing stone relief showing the knight with his hand on dagger.
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Old 26th September 2015, 03:06 AM   #16
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Default The Dirk Development from the Ballock.

More Bollocks....

It can be seen that the Ballock dagger gave rise to the Scottish Dirk as worn in the portrait by Painting below of George Gordon, 5th Duke of Gordon (1770–1836) in highland dress. The two lower pictures show Dirk development in the sketch and the photo shows Dirks....

Please see my main reference on this subject at ~ http://www.myarmoury.com/feature_spot_dirks.html for an excellent review of Ballock and Dirk daggers.

Regards,
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.
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Old 26th September 2015, 07:17 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matchlock
All photos in this thread are copyrighted by the author of the thread, Cornelistromp, except mentioned otherwise.
They may not be used except by written permission from the author.
All rights reserved.
Infringements will be pursued legally.

Michael


I'm sorry I don't understand this statement. Are you claiming ownership of all photos posted here whoever posts them unless they specifically claim copyright?
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Old 26th September 2015, 11:25 AM   #18
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Clearly the Ballock Dagger was very popular..
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Old 26th September 2015, 11:39 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertGuy
I'm sorry I don't understand this statement. Are you claiming ownership of all photos posted here whoever posts them unless they specifically claim copyright?

Michael is not with us any longer, to answer your question, Robert; he has passed away last July. Just don't let that statement worry you.
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Old 27th September 2015, 10:40 AM   #21
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Salaams, cornelistromp ...It is a pleasure to see what is probably the finest research resource for these weapons ... our own library. Thank you cornelistromp ... I actually sourced your second reference "jade quillons" when I was looking at another form from another location where they claimed it was Persian...

What I find most interesting is how these stiletto blades adopted or morphed in tandem with fashion changes across Europe not only in Rondel form etc but onward and into the design of the later Scottish Dirk.

Regards,
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.
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Old 28th September 2015, 12:51 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertGuy
I'm sorry I don't understand this statement. Are you claiming ownership of all photos posted here whoever posts them unless they specifically claim copyright?
The site policy is stated at the bottom of every forum page: "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."

That license only covers the appearance of the material in the thread where the poster placed it and exists to preserve the archival integrity of this resource.

Matchlock came under intense pressures owing to a disastrous sequence of events of failing health leading to his unfortunate and early demise and the content of some of his posts during this tragic downward spiral likely reflect pharmaceutical side effects.
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Old 29th September 2015, 04:10 PM   #23
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two ground finds from the Netherlands of this type
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Old 29th September 2015, 04:19 PM   #24
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How about a drawer full... like this...
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Old 29th September 2015, 08:14 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ibrahiim al Balooshi
How about a drawer full... like this...


@ Ibrahiim
would you please when you post an image specify the source and content.
This often says much more than the image alone.
thus etching and drawing when, where and by whom. Bottom find the site,(tomb) effigy the person and place and so on.

these english ballock dagger grip artifacts are discovered in 1971 in the mary rose warship wreck. they are of a different type as the continental daggers under #1 and also of a later date; first half of he 16thC.
They have a simpler blade geometry, 3 planes.

this type has more the shape and appearance of a phallus than its predecessor, the type was also popular in the Low Countries.
See an archaeological discovery from Netherlands, Dronten, Flevoland 1971

In General hard burl wood remains remarkably well preserved in the soil and water, fe all three daggers in post # 1 are finds from Netherlands.

the wooden grip still has the smell of cigar boxes after 600 years.

best,
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Old 30th September 2015, 11:39 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cornelistromp
@ Ibrahiim
would you please when you post an image specify the source and content.
This often says much more than the image alone.
thus etching and drawing when, where and by whom. Bottom find the site,(tomb) effigy the person and place and so on.

these english ballock dagger grip artifacts are discovered in 1971 in the mary rose warship wreck. they are of a different type as the continental daggers under #1 and also of a later date; first half of he 16thC.
They have a simpler blade geometry, 3 planes.

this type has more the shape and appearance of a phallus than its predecessor, the type was also popular in the Low Countries.
See an archaeological discovery from Netherlands, Dronten, Flevoland 1971

In General hard burl wood remains remarkably well preserved in the soil and water, fe all three daggers in post # 1 are finds from Netherlands.

the wooden grip still has the smell of cigar boxes after 600 years.

best,



Salaams cornelistromp ,
THE MARY ROSE IT INDEED WAS... I LOADED IT ALL UP BUT AT THE CRITICAL MOMENT THE POWER DOVE BENEATH THE WAVES LIKE THE GREAT SHIP HERSELF... And I regret I lost the reference page...but I'm on it now and will search ...See below the mighty ship The Mary Rose. Inside there there's a drawer load of Bollock Daggers...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Rose gives the amazing story yet I am unable to fish out the picture from Davy Jones Locker of the offending drawer load..

Regards,
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.
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Old 30th September 2015, 02:50 PM   #27
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@Ibrahiim,
not mentioning the source and content was actually not indicative for the maryrose relics.
it was more the lack of citation of the art pictures of your post 15 and 16.
evidently also drawings from the 20th century which are rarely representative for medieval, 14th and 15th century arms.

Also the ballock type of post 1 does not apply on those images, however some nice other types do.
with the different dagger threads, I (try to) make a distinction between the various daggers, so also between different ballock daggers.
the type of what is being discussed here has a distinct geometric multistage blade, all likelihood resulting from the dagger legislation in the cities.
I was hoping for more examples and details of this specific type.
(attachment is from collection of Dutch army museum)


best,
Jasper
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Old 1st October 2015, 09:41 AM   #28
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Default Dudgeon Dagger.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cornelistromp
@Ibrahiim,
not mentioning the source and content was actually not indicative for the maryrose relics.
it was more the lack of citation of the art pictures of your post 15 and 16.
evidently also drawings from the 20th century which are rarely representative for medieval, 14th and 15th century arms.

Also the ballock type of post 1 does not apply on those images, however some nice other types do.
with the different dagger threads, I (try to) make a distinction between the various daggers, so also between different ballock daggers.
the type of what is being discussed here has a distinct geometric multistage blade, all likelihood resulting from the dagger legislation in the cities.
I was hoping for more examples and details of this specific type.
(attachment is from collection of Dutch army museum)


best,
Jasper



This is the first mention you have made of #15 and #16. I consider these pictures relevant only as background interest information..Like the excellent artwork for the Mary Rose ...
You may wish to construct them into a portfolio and in which case they can easily be traced...The computer went off line and when I re engaged the machinery they couldnt be retraced. Note that I placed a first picture which unfortunately reorganised itself in another part of the post where I indicate "The first picture shows a set of differing styles for comparison".. Note that I don't write only in the exact blinkered brackets of precisely one steriotype but may on occasions absorb and illustrate other interrelated forms as development and comparison ...and where blades morph and change down the ages. A great example is the development of the Scottish Dirk. That is how I perceive Forum...and for meaningful discussion.

This is Medieval Artwork and as such is not copyrighted being hundreds of years old...even taking the date of copyright early in the 20th C ...Meanwhile I will continue to search for the source and if I find it /them I will post...or let you know...

I note from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bollock_dagger The bollock dagger or ballock knife is a type of dagger with a distinctively shaped shaft, with two oval swellings at the guard resembling male testes ("bollocks"). The guard is often in one piece with the wooden grip, and reinforced on top with a shaped metal washer. The dagger was popular in Scandinavia, Flanders, Wales, Scotland and England between the 13th and 18th centuries, in particular the Tudor period. Within Briton the bollock dagger was commonly carried by many, including Border Reivers, as a backup for the lance and the sword. A large number of such weapons were found aboard the wreck of the Mary Rose. The bollock dagger is the predecessor to the Scottish dirk.

In the Victorian period weapon historians introduced the term kidney dagger, due to the two lobes at the guard, which could also be seen as kidney-shaped, in order to avoid any sexual connotation. (Blair 1962).

The hilt was often constructed of box root (dudgeon) in the 16th and 17th centuries, and the dagger was sometimes called dudgeon dagger or dudgeonhafted dagger in this period.

Regards,
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.

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Old 1st October 2015, 01:10 PM   #29
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thank you, I know what a ballock dagger is because I have a few( around 20-25 pcs) in my collection.such a general definition on wikipedia tells me personally not so much.

I do not think I can explain it to you but try it anyway.
Because this thread is about a specific style of Ballock dagger held in Netherlands, Germany and Flanders between 1390-1460 . (some other types ballocks I have put in another thread) I hope the comments and placed images may focus somewhat on this type and/or period.

further, it is good if we refer to the illustrations in the text, so what is it andwhat is the relevance of the images to the topic.
The Mary Rose and dagger examples are here btw well in place.

furthermore if it fails it is not a big disaster but in terms of quality of information provision of this thread a bit too general.

best,
Jasper
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Old 1st October 2015, 01:27 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cornelistromp
thank you, I know what a ballock dagger is because I have a few( around 20-25 pcs) in my collection.such a general definition on wikipedia tells me personally not so much.

I do not think I can explain it to you but try it anyway.
Because this thread is about a specific style of Ballock dagger held in Netherlands, Germany and Flanders between 1390-1460 . (some other types ballocks I have put in another thread) I hope the comments and placed images may focus somewhat on this type and/or period.

further, it is good if we refer to the illustrations in the text, so what is it andwhat is the relevance of the images to the topic.
The Mary Rose and dagger examples are here btw well in place.

furthermore if it fails it is not a big disaster but in terms of quality of information provision of this thread a bit too general.

best,
Jasper



I dont think threads fail. This one is only at 30 replies and is but young. OK lets accommodate your great idea about focusing on the type you call THE BALLOCK. Germany, Flanders and Netherlands....

Straightaway we run into deep water ...The weapon is very firmly also English and gave rise to the Scottish Dirk... It can be seen at various references with the same or similar flavour such as at https://www.knife-depot.com/knife-information-163.html where it can be observed...Quote"Possibly the manliest of daggers, the bollock dagger has two oval swellings at the tip of its shaft resembling the male genitalia. This dagger was popular in England and Scotland between the 13th and 18th centuries and was commonly carried by outlaws and raiders". (I remember this from my studied about the Border Rievers ...)

"In the Victorian period, historians called the dagger the kidney dagger, because of the two lobes at the guard and in order to avoid sexual connotations. The bollock dagger is also the origin of the expression 'bollocking,' which means to give or receive chastisement".Unquote.

In defence of your stance on this I do acknowledge a note from http://www.bytheswordinc.com/p-1419...er-ah-3271.aspx ...Quote"The Bollock Dagger was the civilian side arm of choice for most of Northern Europe from 1300 – 1550 and often seen on archers and occasionally on middle to higher classes".Unquote.

In so far as the source Wikepedia is concerned; it is a suitable baseline from which to advance and even if in part it is broad based and general it may be remembered that Forum is not only for knowledgeable participants but has a secondary and important role in addressing the subject to all the Forum...not just now but because of the way we collect information...for future study and reference. Do we therefor not have a duty to lay down as much information as we can?

Meanwhile, if I can find an excellent reference to European variants of this weapon I will post it.

Regards,
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.

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