The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Parrying dagger
  • Parrying dagger
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • Toledo or Madrid, Spain
  • probably 3rd quarter of 17th century
  • Iron or steel, chiselled
  • Length: 43.3 cm
    Width: 2.2 cm
    Weight: 0.61 kg
  • A839
  • European Armoury II
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Parrying dagger, of the ‘main gauche’ type, the hilt composed of a flattened, spherical pommel, with button, chiselled in low relief with wreathes containing equestrian figures alternating with fruit and petals; fluted, wire-bound grip; straight cross-guard, the ends spirally fluted and finished with rosette-headed knobs; circular knuckle-guard edged with two bars; the convex centre and pierced and chased in low relief with two horseman in combat within a border of conventional flowers.

    The blade is plain, of triangular section, converging to diamond section at the point; the back-edge notched, the ricasso has the usual hollow depression on the inner side for the thumb.

    Spanish (Toledo or Madrid), probably third quarter of the 17th century.

    Norman and Barne, 1980, p. 182.

    This dagger was once thought to be the companion to rapier A663. However the pommel alone resembles that of A663. The guards match a type of rapier hilt not represented in the Collection. The Kienbusch collection, now in the Philadelphia Museum of Art, contains a dagger of this type still with its matching rapier (cat., no. 385, pl. CVI). A dagger with shell-guard of identical design to that of A839 is in the Harding collection in the Art Institute of Chicago (no. 2092).