The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Parrying dagger
  • Parrying dagger
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • France or Italy
  • 2nd quarter of 17th century
  • Steel and cord, blued and etched
  • Length: 46 cm
    Length: 31.7 cm, blade
    Width: 1.9 cm
    Weight: 0.45 kg
  • A841
  • European Armoury III
Commentary
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Parrying dagger, of the ‘main gauche’ type, the hilt made up of a faceted oviform pommel and turned button; cord-bound grip of octagonal section; strongly curved cross-guard of diamond section scrolled at the ends and bent slightly outward; single side-ring, and triangular knuckle-guard secured to the pommel by a screw, the edge turned over the surface crudely etched with flowers on a granulated ground; the pommel and cross-guard of plain blued steel.

    The stiff blade is of diamond section, the facets hollowed and the edges finely ground, short ricasso grooved and flattened on one side for the thumb.

    Norman and Barne, 1980, p. 136.

    Probably Italian, second quarter of the 17th century.

    The knuckle-guard is of a form commonly found on daggers and a few swords of this type. See Boccia and Coelho, 1975, figs. 579-81 and 586-90 for comparable hilts dated about 1620-30. A dagger of this type is illustrated in ‘Soldiers Fighting Over Booty’ by Willem Cornelisz Duystetter, c. 1625 (National Gallery, London, no. 1386).