Object Title





Object Number



Transferred to the Armouries from the Rotunda Museum, Woolwich (latterly inv. no. XII.1); said to have been presented by King George VI (source for this presently unknown - not in Rotunda catalogue - PJL).

Physical Description

Steel head consisting of a long triangular blade with a pronounced medial ridge. On either side of the neck of this blade is a small, flat-ended lug. From the neck spring two wings projecting upwards at an angle of approximately 45 degrees to the main blade and the upper halves of both wings have medial ridges. The inner edges of the wings are straight, the lower half of the outer edges have two cusps and the remainder has a straight edge. The decagonal socket has two langets (or cheeks) extending down the modern haft. The base of the blade and the wings, and the socket are etched with figures of saints, putti, and centaurs, a grotesque male figure, foliage, strapwork, and scroll-work, the main figures against a finely hatched ground. Considerable traces of fire-gilding remain.


Dimensions: Overall length: 1931 mm (76 in.), Head length: 559 mm (22 in.) Weight: 1.45 kg (3 lb. 3 oz.)

Inscriptions and Marks

On blade, once on each side, stamped: like a capital I with a crenellated or saw-top (sketch in IBE).


Places Italy

Bibliographic References

Official catalogue of the Museum of Artillery in the Rotunda, Woolwich (CHK TITLE), London, HMSO, 1864, p. 88, inv. no. XII.10.

Official catalogue of the Museum of Artillery in the Rotunda, Woolwich, London, HMSO, 1889, p. 121, inv. no. XII.1.

A V B Norman and G M Wilson, Treasures from the Tower of London, Norwich, 1982, pp. 67-8, no. 50 (illus., p. 66) - 'Italian, early 16th century'.

P.J. Lankester, 'Two maces from Henry VIII's arsenal?', Royal Armouries Yearbook, 5, 2000, pp. 27-43, at p. 30 (mention re mark).

T Richardson, The Armour and Arms of Henry VIII, Royal Armouries Museum, Leeds, 2002, p. 31 (illus., right).


[Discussion: TO DO copy or extract first paragraph from Norman and Wilson 1982; also check descr. there against above].
For other objects with the same mark and for information on the mark generally, see entry for VII.853.