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Old 11th January 2022, 06:38 PM   #1
Jim McDougall
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Default Fencing, Dueling and Rapiers in Spanish Colonial California

In the colonies of New Spain from the 17th century until Mexico won its independence in 1821, the sword had its presence in numerous variations throughout, and seems to maintained its place in honorary sense long after.

The reputation of the Spaniard and his skill with the sword, particularly the rapier and the mysterious fencing system known as destreza, has long been well known. It seems there is a degree of evidence that these existed in Spains colonies, but it would seem in the more metropolitan and well settled regions.

For those out there familiar with the rapier and fencing as well as dueling of course, my question is, in the relatively remote region of Alta California, were these practices extant, and in late 18th to early 19th c. ?

The sword pictured is elementally a rapier, however too small to be regarded as a weapon, more likely either a dress or perhaps practice weapon.
These type hilts are known to have been on swords used during the Mexican revolution period of c. 1810, and in frontier areas, but with more substantial blades.

With this being the case, the suggestion is that some sort of practice or sword drill perhaps was carried out with swords of this type, but far more substantial evidence or accounts are needed. Clearly if this were a practice weapon it would have a button or rebated blade.
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