The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Partizan
  • Partizan
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • Germany
  • 1615
  • Iron or steel, oak, etched
  • Length: 65 cm, including socket
    Length: 36.2 cm, straps
    Weight: 2.65 kg
  • Inscription: 'W W' and '1615'
  • A999
  • European Armoury III
Commentary
History
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Partizan, with a tall head, the two-edged blade being of flattened diamond section, with upward-curving, cusped flukes of crescent shape; socket of circular section, with two side-straps (one of which has been restored); the blade and socket forged in one piece. The head is etched on a granular ground with a numerous assortment of military trophies and has in the centre of the lower part on both sides the arms of Wolfgang Wilhelm of Bavaria, Count Palatine of the Rhine and Duke of Neuburg (quarterly of eight: Bavaria, Juliers, Cleves, Bergh, Veldentz, Marck, Ravensberg, Mörs, with the Lion of the Palatinate in pretence). The arms are encircled by the collar of the Golden Fleece, to which order Wolfgang Wilhelm was elected by Philip III of Spain. He was born in 1578, succeeded in 1614, and died in 1653. The socket bears his cipher, W W, and the date 1615; the straps are decorated with conventional laurel leaves; the staff of oak is a restoration.

    For the sword presented to Wolfgang Wilhelm upon his succession to the Electorate in 1614 by Philip III, see A624.

    German (Bavarian), dated 1615.

    Skelton II, pl. LXXXVII, fig. 13; Meyrick Catalogue, no. 750.

    Provenance: Sir S. R. Meyrick; Frédéric Spitzer.

    A like partizan, bearing the same arms and monogram, and dated 1618, is in the Royal Armouries (inv. no. VII. 217).

    Wolfgang Wilhelm restored the Roman Catholic faith to the Palatinate, which his predecessor, Otto Heinrich (A29), had made Protestant.

    The initials on the socket include the M of Magdalene, daughter of William V of Bavaria, the first wife of the Count Palatine. Another example is in the Kienbusch collection in the Philadelphia Museum of Art (cat., no. 596, pI. CXXIX, where other examples are cited).