Object Title




about 1770

Object Number



Purchased from the Beriah Botfield collection at Norton Hall, Northamptonshire, with the aid of the National Art Collections Fund, 1942 (Norton Hall No. 64).

Physical Description

Hilt probably Scottish; blade probably German. Bright iron or steel hilt, basically of conventional Scottish form but of rather square shape and with the spaces between the side and main knuckle-guards each filled with three longitudinal, rectangular bars rather than the usual saltire bars and plate. Seen from the side, the side knuckle-guards and forward guard appear as one continuous bar. The straight rear quillon extension (or wrist-guard) is quite long and expands to form a wide, scrolled terminal. The outside faces of the main bars are decorated with an incised line near each edge. Fishskin-covered wooden grip, spirally grooved but lacking a wire binding.

Associated two edged blade with three fullers on each side which start at the hilt and extend to very near the tip.


Dimensions: Overall length: approx. 1015 mm (40 in.), Width of hilt (in plane of blade): approx. 165 mm (6 1/2 in.), Depth of hilt: approx. 135 mm (5 3/8), Blade length: 865 mm (34 1/16 in.), Blade width, by hilt: 30.5 mm (1.20 in.) Weight: 2 lb 14 oz

Inscriptions and Marks

On blade, both sides, in central fuller, stamped: XX IN TOLEDO XX.


Bibliographic References

P.J. Lankester, 'A Basket-Hilted Sword Marked 'AC' in the Royal Armouries' Journal of the Arms and Armour Society, XIII Supplement September 1990 pp. 36, 50 note 11 - summary of Scottish type basket hilts from the Botfield collection.

F. Wilkinson, Those entrusted with arms..., London, Greenhill Books and Leeds, Royal Armouries, 2002, p. 86, fig. 7.3 (hilt and base of blade).

C Mazansky, British basket-hilted swords. A typology of basket-type sword hilts, Boydell Press, Woodbridge, 2005, p. 147, type G7, pommel type III (illus.): 'c.1770'; p. 23, detail illus. of pommel, under pommel type IIIB.


The hilt is almost identical to that of IX.830. Both hilts are reminiscent of the style of Walter Allen of Stirling but larger, more angular and less free in form.
This sword was evidently at one time on loan to the National Army Museum and has a blue label attached with their loan number: 7205-8-24.