The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Rapier
  • Rapier
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • Hilt- Italy, possibly; blade- Germany
  • c. 1625
  • Steel, blued, filed and chiselled
  • Length: 95.2 cm
    Width: 2 cm
    Weight: 1.28 kg
  • Inscription: '· ME FECIT · EN TOLEDO'
    Stamp: King's head in profile and other marks suggesting the T of Toledo
  • A606
  • European Armoury II
Commentary
History
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Rapier, the swept hilt of blued steel made up of an oviform pommel, chiselled and notched like a fir-cone; spirally fluted, wire-bound grip; diagonally curved crossguard; three ring-guards, of diamond section, symmetrical on both sides, the forward rings enclose small pierced shell; hilt arms joined to the knuckle-guard by a loop; the centres of the guards and the ends of the crossguard and knuckle-guard are decorated like the pommel with spiral notching; blade of hexagonal section, grooved and inscribed at both sides:

    · ME FECIT· EN TOLEDO

    The long ricasso is stamped on each side with a king's head in profile, and other marks which have in the past been interpreted as supportive of an attribution to Toledo. In fact this piece is a Solingen imitation, as the addition of the king's head mark, used by the Wundes family, suggests. A very similar hilt is depicted in the portrait by Van Dyck formerly thought to be of Livio Odescalchi, about 1622-7 (Musée du Louvre, inv. no. RF 1942-34).