Object Title

Sword

Sword

Date

1571-1599

Object Number

IX.629

Provenance

The blade is from the Rotunda, Woolich (XIV. 3 in the printed catalogue); the quillons are also from the Rotunda where they had been fitted to another sword (probably XIV. 1). Pommel gift of the Duke of Brunswick, 1953.

Physical Description

Hilt: Wooden grip, restored. Long quillons, the tips curved round towards the blade. They are shaped and etched to represent fish, from whose mouths spring foliate scrolls which form the curved tips. Two small volutes project downwards, close to the blade. On either side are large oval ring guards , of square section, each embellished with three knobs and crossed by the two curved bars, forming an X-shape.


Blade: double-edged blade of flattened diamond section, with long oblong ricasso, from which project two bluntly pointed lugs. Etched on both sides of the ricasso is the monogram of a Crowned 'HI'(of Duke Julius, together with the date (of manufacture?) '1573' and the number '69'.

Dimensions

Dimensions: overall length 2025 mm (80 in), blade length 1355 mm (53.5 in) Weight: 10 lb. 3 oz.

Component parts

Inscriptions and Marks

Stamped shield mark on one of the pointed lugs of the blade. The ricasso also bears the the earlier Rotunda number 'MA 1794'.

Associations

Places Germany

Bibliographic References

A R Dufty and A Borg European Swords & daggers in the Tower of London, HMSO, London, 1974, Pls 8a, b, 106 ('mark' on ricasso).

Notes

The pommel that was on sword when acquired was placed in store (see separate entry) when the present pommel acquired.
A large number of swords belonging to this group are in existence, some dated dated 1573 and some 1574. Several were included in the 'Exhibition of arms, armour and militaria lent by the Duke of Brunswick and L³neberg', The Armouries, Tower of London, 1952-53, pp. 23-28, nos 78-89 & Pl. VIII (for a general summary of the series, see p. 23). The Art Institute of Chicago holds No.59 (date to add) (1982.2251); The Collections of the Duke of Brunswick and Luneburg, Marienburg, Nos 1 (dated 1573), 8 (1574), 95 (date to find), 168 (1573) and 293 (1573); Glasgow Museums, Art Gallery and Museum, Kelvingrove, No. 297 (dated 1573) (R L Scott Collection, A1939.65 hw); Sotheby's Royal House of Hanover sale, Scloss Marienburg, Pattensen bei Hanover, 5-15 October 2005, Lot 229, no. 172, illus. in cat. (dated 1574). See Neil Melville, 'The mystery of the Brunswick swords', 'Classic Arms and Militaria', XIII, no. 2 [n.d., 2006, pre June], pp. 36-39. Published since the above paragraph was written & information NOT YET EXTRACTED (copy on inv. file).