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Old 2nd August 2016, 05:54 PM   #1
Kmaddock
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Default Blade for identification

Hi
Just purchased a job lot and this blade was part of the deal.
Long, at 34 inches but quiet slender at one inch at widest
Some nice etchings on blade.
Looking at the clothes on the etching figures I am guessing st 1750's
Does the clipped blade indicate a specific age or country of origin
Any information gratefully accepted
No makers marks at all anywhere
Regards
Ken
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Old 3rd August 2016, 06:46 AM   #2
ulfberth
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Hello Kmaddock,

That is a fine blade you have there, the clipped blade tip has nothing to do with its origin although this was in vogue
during the Napoleonic wars and after.
This is the blade of a high ranked officer, its a blade of a luxe saber circa 1800.
The end tang was never traditionally peened, but fixed with a bolt a technique used more often on luxe sabers because over the bolt came the pommel cap so you could not see were the sword was peened.
Blades with this type of etching and tip were very popular again in expensive saber's around 1830 and after.
So I would place this blade between 1800 and not later than 1850, probably from the Napoleonic era , it could be French but also any other involved country of that period that was inspired by the French type of saber's.

Could you take a picture of the first 5 CM of the blade from both sides ?
Perhaps remove the rust a bit with steel wool first.


kind regards

Ulfberth
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Old 3rd August 2016, 04:33 PM   #3
Jim McDougall
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ulfberth
Hello Kmaddock,

That is a fine blade you have there, the clipped blade tip has nothing to do with its origin although this was in vogue
during the Napoleonic wars and after.
This is the blade of a high ranked officer, its a blade of a luxe saber circa 1800.
The end tang was never traditionally peened, but fixed with a bolt a technique used more often on luxe sabers because over the bolt came the pommel cap so you could not see were the sword was peened.
Blades with this type of etching and tip were very popular again in expensive saber's around 1830 and after.
So I would place this blade between 1800 and not later than 1850, probably from the Napoleonic era , it could be French but also any other involved country of that period that was inspired by the French type of saber's.

Could you take a picture of the first 5 CM of the blade from both sides ?
Perhaps remove the rust a bit with steel wool first.


kind regards

Ulfberth




Absolutely superb description Ulfberth!!! I totally agree, and the Napoleonic period was a monumentally key period in the diffusion of European influences on arms, fashions, tactics and the basis of historical development for so many things for years to come.

The 'clipped tip' was an interesting blade feature which seems to have been primarily one which seems to evolved in German blades early in the 18th century. It is not clear whether the innovation took place there, but it is certain that Solingen had used it in their blades by then. I have seen English dragoon swords of c. 1750s with them (of course the blades were likely German).

The interesting use of acid etching on this blade, not only revealing these commemorative features of the figure depicted, but begs the question, just how early was acid etching used in adding such motif. We know that it was well in use in Europe by the Napoleonic period...but how much further back?
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Old 3rd August 2016, 08:58 PM   #4
ulfberth
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Thank you jim,

according to Oakeshott this would be the sword of Sancho IV el Bravo of Castille , died 1298.
The earliest examples I ever held in my hands were 16th C , including this one sold at Christie's in 2013.

Kind regards

Ulfberth
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Old 3rd August 2016, 09:41 PM   #5
Kmaddock
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Thanks Ulfbert
I will do a bit of cleaning when I get some wire wool,
All I have is a very course OO grade which would scratch the metal too much.
I should have it by the weekend, I do not think there is anything of significance under the rust though and it just looks like foliage under the crud
Regards
Ken
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Old 3rd August 2016, 11:06 PM   #6
Jim McDougall
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Thank you Ulfberth for the note on the Spanish sword, that is surely a lot earlier than I thought!!!

Ken,
In further thought , this blade may have some even more intriguing history as the figures seem to have some resemblance to those on blades often associated with the notorious 'pandours'. These auxiliary units were utilized
in a number of European armies which followed the concept of these troops in the service of Austria in 1740s.
These kind of figures and the words Vivat Pandur were often in the blade motif. Even this clipped tip seems to me to have been termed a pandour point (Gerhard Seifert, "Schwert Degen Sabel").

Go gently on that cleaning, this looks like a fascinating blade!!!
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Old 4th August 2016, 05:59 AM   #7
ulfberth
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kmaddock
Thanks Ulfbert
I will do a bit of cleaning when I get some wire wool,
All I have is a very course OO grade which would scratch the metal too much.
I should have it by the weekend, I do not think there is anything of significance under the rust though and it just looks like foliage under the crud
Regards
Ken


Hi Ken,

don't be afraid to use the 00 wool, it can't make a scratch on a hardened blade and if you still doubt apply some drops of oil with it.

kind regards

Ulfberth
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Old 4th August 2016, 06:16 AM   #8
ulfberth
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[QUOTE=Jim McDougall]Thank you Ulfberth for the note on the Spanish sword, that is surely a lot earlier than I thought!!!

Hi Jim,
I did not expect to see an etched blade so soon in history either but I think only a few high skilled artist at this period were able to do it and as with all hand craftsmanship they would keep the method the secret of the family.
In the 16th century the etching was sure more wide spread, while etched blades of this period are extremely rare we do see more etched helmets and other armor in this period.
In the picture is a 17th C Pappenheimer rapier that has an etched crest on the ricasso used as a makers mark. Its quite uncommon but there are more rapiers like that out there. The ones I saw were all high quality rapiers no arming swords so far ( in the 16th and 17th C )

kind regards

Ulfberth
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Old 4th August 2016, 07:34 AM   #9
ulfberth
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Here is another Pappenheimer (early 17th C) from the same maker with an etched cartouche with the inscription : "ME FECIT SOLINGEN WILHELM WIRSBERG" one one side and on the other side: "GLORIA VIRTUTEM SEPUITUR 1627 " here the eched crest apears on the ricasso and the blade.

for more pictures and info:
http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=9378

kind regards

Ulfberth
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Old 5th August 2016, 11:24 PM   #10
NeilUK
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A small correction to Ulfberth's reading of the blade inscription in the last post: it actually reads GLORIA VIRTUTEM SEQUITUR which makes sense - Glory attends on Valour (or Courage).
Regards, Neil
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Old 6th August 2016, 06:21 AM   #11
ulfberth
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Thanks Neil,

You are right, I used the spelling from the description without checking it any further. But you made me look again and its clear the its is Q and not a P.

kind regards

Ulfberth
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