Object Title

Rapier

Rapier

Date

1590-1610

Object Number

IX.869

Provenance

Acquired 1947. Ex Brett and Visconti Collections. Purchased Ledger Sale (Christies), 15 May 1947, lot 67.

Physical Description

Blue steel swept hilt, with guards of flattened oval section, counterfeit damascening in gold with strapwork and arabesques. Barrel-shaped pommel slightly flattened in the plane of the blade. Knuckle-guard terminating in small stylised beast head turned away from the pommel, and rear quillon with rounded end, supporting arms of the hilt which in turn support on their ends two side rings, the larger of which is inclined towards the pommel and linked by a loop guard to the knuckle-guard. Inside the hand is a transverse guard with the branches linking the knuckle-guards to the arms. Wooden grip bound with silver wire. Flattened hexagonal section blade stamped in a groove at the forte with the letters:
(Obverse) AH XoX HA XoX GH XoX GA XoX HG
_(Reverse) GAH XoX GHG XoX A XoX AHG XoX

Dimensions

Dimensions: Overall length: 49.7 in (1262 mm), Length of blade: 43 in (1092 mm) Weight: 2 lb 9 oz (1 kg 162 g)

Inscriptions and Marks

A mark (CHECK) is stamped on each face of the ricasso.

Associations

Places Italy
Events Gloriana

Bibliographic References

P. Hammond, Royal Armouries Official Guide, 2nd (rev'd) edn, London, 1993, p. 30, right (col. ill., lacking last third of blade - 'North Italian, about 1600').

A.R. Dufty and A. Borg, European Swords and Daggers in the Tower of London, London, 1974, pl. 27b.

Royal Armouries, Royal Armouries Museum [Leeds]. Souvenir guide, Royal Armouries, Leeds etc. [2006], pp. 50-51, illus. (gen. view - 'Italian, about 1600').

C. Paggiarino, The Royal Armouries, masterpieces of medieval and renaissance arms and armour, Milan, 2011 volume 2