The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Rapier
  • Rapier
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • Blade- Italy; hilt- North Europe
  • 2nd quarter of 17th century
  • Iron or steel and silver, blackened and damascened
  • Length: 101.6 cm
    Width: 1.8 cm
    Weight: 0.62 kg
  • A513
  • European Armoury III
Commentary
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Rapier, the hilt composed of a slender oviform pommel with button; wire-bound grip; guard of oval section with lobated terminals, curved respectively upwards and downwards, and with the ends slightly bent horizontally. Both pommel and guard are blackened and overlaid in silver with a network of ovals enclosing rosettes. Slender, tapering double-edged blade of diamond section.

    A comparable hilt is illustrated in a portrait of an unknown man by Johannes Cornelisz Verspronck, signed and dated 1639 (sold at Sotheby's, 23 May 1951, lot 83), and another in a painting of a man smoking by Gerbrandt van den Eeckhout, signed and dated 1655 (Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg). This, or a very similar hilt, mounted on a flamboyant blade, is illustrated as no. 130 of 'Armi lunghe a taglio' among Dassi's drawings of the collection of Ambrogio Uboldo, in the Castello Sforzesco, Milan. Norman and Barne, 1980, p. 66.