Object Title

Sword

Sword

Date

1470-1500

Object Number

IX.5427

Provenance

Purchased 05/06/1997. Formerly Deposit A0268/5. Recovered from the Thames foreshore at Queenhythe, London by the vendor and Mr Ian Smith on 15 September 1995. The sword was recovered 'along with a few coins of Edward IV, thus we date approx. 1460-1485' (letter from the seller, 26 Feb. 1997 ).

Physical Description

Flattened spherical pommel, and exposed tang (grip lacking). The rectangular-sectioned quillons curve towards the blade aproximately through a right angle. The quillons formed in one with a triangular 'quillon block': their width increaes and their thickness decreases towards the ends.


Quite short, straight two-edged blade of flattened diamond section.

Dimensions

BladeLength18.55 in
BladeLength477 mm
BladeWidth1.4 in
BladeWidth4.4 in
BladeWidth111 mm
BladeWidth36 mm
OverallLength24.4 in
OverallLength620 mm
OverallWeight0.82 kg

Bibliographic References

Royal Armouries, An introduction to princely armours and weapons of childhood (authors: B Clifford and K Watts), Leeds, Royal Armouries, 2003, p. 9 (illus. - full length).

Notes

IX.1426 is a sword with with similarly arched quillons and another is in the Victoria and Albert Museum (reg. no. COMPL.). It is said to have come from Standon church (Herts) and other similar swords from English churches are known (see undated letter (about July/August 1996) from A.R.E. North on inv. file). One example which was hung above the tomb of Sir Edmund Walsingham in St Nicholas Church, Chiselhurst, Kent is currently (March 2003) on loan to the Royal Armouries, RA number AL.245 2).
For further swords with similarly shaped quillons and their possible dates see entry for IX.1426, under Notes. [Additional general information and examples should be noted there PJL]. See there for details of one found on the Mary Rose wreck (sunk 1545; no. MR 82/A 1932) which, like IX.5427, also has a spherical pommel.
Because of the short blade of the present sword, it has been suggested that it sword was made for a child. Children's swords are rare. Another example is IX.2225. Another, then owned by Claude Blair, was in the Art of the Armourer exhibition (London 1963), cat. no. 62, where it was dated to the first half of the fourteenth century (photocopy on inv. file, see also letter from A.R.E. North, 'op. cit.').