Object Title

Sword

Sword

Date

1300-1350

Object Number

IX.2141

Provenance

Purchased from an individual, 29 May 1981. Apparently found in a peat bog together with a sword which is now in the Oldeschalchi collection, Rome (Inv. No. 837); ex Laking and de Cosson collections (sold Sotheby's 14 May 1929, Lot 93) who had bought it from an individual in 1895; sold at Sotheby's 30 November 1962, Lot 30, to an individual; 1976/7 sold to an individual.

Physical Description

The hilt is probably of the Oakeshott type XIV. Tthe pommel is probably of the so-called 'pod' form, Oakeshott type W, as it has the general form of two cones, butted at their bases and with their tops flattened. The arched quillons are of square section with pyramidal terminals and there is a restored leather-covered wooden grip.
The blade is stiff, broad, and double-edged, and it expands at the hilt and has a very sharp point. A single fuller runs down the centre of each side for two-thirds of the blade's length. At the forte on either side of the blade is engraved on each side of the fuller with the letters IOIO (or TOTO) within a semi-circle. On one side of the blade the inscription apparently retains traces of gilding. Both hilt an blade have a hard black patina.

Techniques

Handmade

Materials

Dimensions

OverallLength1005 mm
OverallWeight1090 g
HiltLength155 mm
GuardLength180 mm
BladeLength850 mm
BladeWidth64 mm

Inscriptions and Marks

Unknown
IOIO or TOTO
Forte of blade, either side
Engraved

Associations

Places Europe
France

Bibliographic References

R. E. Oakeshott, The Sword in the Age of Chivalry, London, revised edn., London etc., 1981, p.101, pl.20 a

Notes

The sword in the Oldeschalchi collection with the same provenance is very similar indeed to this one although it lacks a blade inscription (see N di Carpegna, 'Antiche Armi', Rome 1969, Catalogue No. 196 repr. in cat.)

There is a similar sword in Deutsches Klingenmuseum, Solingen: DKM 1953.W.148. Published in `Das Schwert – Gestalt und Gedanke / The Sword – Form and Thought` exhibtion catalogue, catalogue number 14. See Inventory file, also for details of reproduction made by Peter Johnsson.

Similar pommels also occur on a sword from the River Witham, with arched quillons and a similar blade, in a private collection (further details in binder), illustrated in Oakeshott, 'The Sword in the Age of Chivalry', London, 1964, Pl. 26A; A Bruhn Hoffmeyer 'Middelalderens Tvaggede Svaerd, Copenhagen, 1954, pl. XXIII f); a sword with straight quillons in a Danish private coll. (see inventory for details), ill. Hoffmeyer, 'op.cit.,' pl. XXIII d; a boy's sword in the Glasgow Museum (see Oakeshott 'op.cit' p.101); a sword from the V. Gay Collection, Museum fur Deutsche Geschichte, E. Berlin (ibid); a dagger (formerly) in the collection of Sir James Mann and now Royal Armouries AL.23 101, (ibid); two boys swords, in private collectionsat time of writing (see inventory for details) and, according to Oakeshott ('op.cit.' p.101), on an effigy at Gosberton in Lincolnshire.


Similar blade markings are found on a sword with a single-edged blade at one time in the Collection of Professor G. Bini, Rome, which was sold at Sotheby's Rome, 5, 6 November 1973, lot202 (see A.V.B. Norman 'The Rapier and Small Sword 1460-1820, London 1980, p.32).


A copy of this sword was made by Wilkinson Sword Ltd. and presented to the Education Centre, 1983, (inv. no. XXI.91)W