I offer for sale a very nice, North European, Swept hilt Rapier, having a substantial double edged, flattened diamond cross-section, blade measuring a very respectable 115.5 cm and stamped with a series of three small crosses and the initials “IHS”. A short, deep, single fuller is cut into the first quarter of the blade length and the blade is in very good condition having just the tiniest lateral distortion to the final quarter of the blade length (almost noticeable), and some spots of black oxidization. The blade has taken on a rice ‘salt n pepper’ patina. There is only minor chip to one of the blade edges, and both edges are still sharp and keen. This fine sword has the classic, Steel swept hilt, consisting of flattened, faceted and recurved quillon bars, which are chiselled with scrolling foliage and flowerheads. Off the quillon-block (which has two short langets) run two wide “Arms”, chiselled with similar decoration, which form the platform for a forward Ring-guard and on the reverse, a series of three sweeping guard bars which curve around to attach to the quillon bar. One of the three sweeping guard bars has a fracture to it where the bars join together, but nothing which detracts from the overall appearance of the sword, or it’s stability. A “C” shaped knuckle-guard emerges from the quillon block, which again is flattened, faceted and bears chiselled decoration. It terminates in a widening flat knop with button terminal, very much in the German (Saxon) style of the early 1600’s. Branching off the centre of the knuckle-guard a sweeping rear guard bar flows forwards to attach to the front of one of the “Arms”. The wooden grip is nicely bound with it’s Steel wire wrap and has ‘Turk’s head’ knots of wire top and bottom. A large spherical, faceted pommel balances this sword nicely. A tang button protrudes from the pommel which is untouched. There is the tiniest amount of lateral movement between blade and hilt, hardly noticeable, due to the shrinkage of the wooden grip over the past 400 years, but again this is very minor. Altogether, a highly attractive and very nicely decorated, 1600’s North European rapier.
17th Century Swept Hilt Rapier