Object Title

Sword and scabbard

Sword and scabbard



Object Number



From a private collection. Presented by the Wembley Corporation in 1953

Physical Description

Hilt: of brass and steel comprising grip and integral pommel and a crossguard in brass along with integral steel knuckle guard and quillons.

Pommel and grip: flattened globular pommel of oval section, with a tang button, joined at its lower edge with the grip of oval section which tapers slightly towards the blade and is decorated all over with rows of overalapping pendant scallops, each scallop having a central rib in the manner of a leaf which bisects two adjacent scallops on the row above.

Crossguard: rectangular, box section, with a sunken face within a narrow border on inner and outer faces. The lower edge of the inner and outer faces are extended to form an isosceles trapezoidal langet pointing towards the blade and bearing an embossed cap of liberty, or Phrygian cap. From within the hollow box of the crossguard extend three steel arms of rectangular section. Two, approximately 80 mm long, function as quillons and turn turn steeply towards the blade, becoming parallel with it and terminate in ovoid brass finials.Attached to the forward arm is a lead disc bearing the stamped number '14/99' The third projects just beyond the end of the box of the cross guard and turns at 90 degrees and extends for 105 mm with a slight inclination outwards from the grip and terminates in a simple plain scroll flourish.

Blade: double edged of flattened diamond section and terminating in a very angular point.


Dimensions: Sword: Overall length: 660 mm (26 in), blade length: 518 mm (20.4 in), Scabbard: 533 mm (21 in) Weight: Sword: 920 gm (2 lb), Scabbard: 412 gm (14 oz)

Inscriptions and Marks

Obscure mark stamped on end of knuckle guard.


Places France

Bibliographic References

N. Hall, 'J. L. David's sword for the Ecole de Mars', Apollo, CXXX, No 329 (New Series), July 1989.pp 33 - 36, 69.

A.R. Dufty and A. Borg, European Swords and Daggers in the Tower of London, London, 1974, Pl 88b.

M. D. Coe, et. al., Swords and Hilt Weapons, London, 1989, P 90.


This sword was designed by the artist David for the Ecole de Mars which was only in existence for a short period during the French Revolution under Robespierre.
A drawing for this pattern of sword is thought to exist in the Museum at Besancon [note from G M Wilson, following article by N. Hall.]

See also C. Ariès, 'Armes Blanches Militaires Françaises', 30 vols and index, 1966-1990, fasc. XXIII,, 1975, fig(s). 1a - e.