George Silver's short sword

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George Silver's short sword

Postby admin » 15 Jun 2009 16:40

Why do you think George Silver shows a backsword of a type usually found in Germany?

English baskethilts of his time are surprisingly uniform, with a hilt like this:
Image

Or this fancy version:
http://www.myarmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=14793

But while his sword shows a typically English pommel, it appears to have a crossguard, which as far as I understand is quite a German feature and not found on English swords:

Image

By the way, I wrote a bit more about English ball pommels here:
http://www.fioredeiliberi.org/phpBB2/vi ... hp?t=10209
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Postby Brewerkel » 15 Jun 2009 21:37

I have a passing interest in very early basket hilt broadswords. I wouldn't be so quick to presume a national style for hilt design until close to the second quarter of the 17thC, if then. IMO, your example seems to be somewhat later than 1599, perhaps 1620"s?

Some surviving specimens show signs of the forepart of the cross being sawn off during their working lives. John Moffat, a Scottish collector, advised me several years ago that the worked bar basket hilt co-existed with cruciform hilts, besides combinations of the two, during the last quarter of the 16thC. He was a very experienced collector, so I have no reason to doubt his comment, unless it only pertained to the Borders region.

I seem to recall the problem was sorting out where and by whom the blades were mounted as most of them came from Germany anyway. But then, it was 1993 and a lot of scotch has passed the liver since then. Memory is fickle I'm sad to admit. :oops: I'd love to read updated information if you have some. I'm still playing with a design for hilts on AL backswords.
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Postby swordflasher » 15 Jun 2009 21:52

I'd imagined that he/ his publisher just used some illustrations from wherever.
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Postby Carletto » 15 Jun 2009 21:55

If I remember right, Chris told me that Scottish basket hilts had crosses. Personally, I don't like a sword without a cross (a short one integral to the hilt would be OK), no matter what the hilt is.
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Postby Brewerkel » 15 Jun 2009 22:14

Which Chris would that be Carlo? Chris Dobson? I'm not up on the who's who in the collector world.
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Postby Carletto » 15 Jun 2009 22:44

Brewerkel wrote:Which Chris would that be Carlo? Chris Dobson? I'm not up on the who's who in the collector world.


Chris host of the hemac mailing list
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Postby admin » 16 Jun 2009 00:07

http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Postby admin » 16 Jun 2009 00:10

This is the earliest surviving dateable example of an English basket hilt that I know of, and has a full crossguard:
http://www.maryrose.org/ship/hand2.htm
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Postby admin » 16 Jun 2009 00:17

Note the big hollow ball pommel again on the Mary Rose sword:

Image

Image
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Postby Motley » 16 Jun 2009 15:36

admin wrote:This is the earliest surviving dateable example of an English basket hilt that I know of, and has a full crossguard:
http://www.maryrose.org/ship/hand2.htm


That is fascinating! especially in how it goes into the detail of how it was made. I guess that would be an ideal Silver sword? If his art is as traditional as he makes out?

The article says that a load of other swords were found. Do you know if any of them are detailed/pictured too? doe what type of sword they are?
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Postby admin » 16 Jun 2009 15:39

No, just this one sword survived from the ship.
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Postby admin » 16 Jun 2009 15:44

Hmm, but then they refer to 25 sword grips recovered from the Mary Rose. I'm confused...
The only thing I can think is that this is the only one where iron remained, as the conditions preserved wood and corroded iron.
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Postby admin » 16 Jun 2009 15:48

Aha:

Of the many thousands of Tudor artefacts retrieved from the wreck, the sword is unique as every other metal edged weapon was almost completely destroyed underwater leaving only the wooden parts or just a few fragments of metal trapped within concretions.
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Postby Motley » 16 Jun 2009 15:49

ah cool. Sorry I mis-read :-)
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Postby admin » 16 Jun 2009 16:03

This is an interesting article about another early basket-hilt:
http://www.northamptonchron.co.uk/news/ ... 4162025.jp
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Postby admin » 16 Jun 2009 16:05

http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Postby admin » 16 Jun 2009 16:06

Image
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Postby admin » 16 Jun 2009 16:44

http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Postby Lucy » 16 Jun 2009 17:09

admin wrote:This is the earliest surviving dateable example of an English basket hilt that I know of, and has a full crossguard:
http://www.maryrose.org/ship/hand2.htm


That's amazing. I would like that exact one, please. From the Mary Rose.

It would make a brilliant conversation piece if mounted on the wall.
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Postby Brewerkel » 16 Jun 2009 19:37

admin wrote:Another early-ish example:
http://www.dhr.virginia.gov/Armor/basket_hilt_803.htm


That's quite similar to the one John Moffat had when I visited his Border Armour museum. I know I have a few poor photos of it since it had rough shamrock or thistle termini on the bars. Its a slide so even after I find it, it'll be a bit before I can put it up in the files section.
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