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Forum Index > Historical Arms Talk > Cinquedeas--Any Evidence? Reply to topic
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Ben Bouchard




Location: Bar Harbor, ME
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PostPosted: Wed 26 Oct, 2011 10:56 am    Post subject: Cinquedeas--Any Evidence?         Reply with quote

I keep finding references to the Italian cinquedea as having been carried horizontally at the small of the back, but no references to back up the claim. Anyone have any artwork or period descriptions of such a method of carry?
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Wed 26 Oct, 2011 12:31 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The main problem with such a statement is that these weapons come in a variety of lengths, some of which would be impractical for such carriage. It was common for a narrow dagger to be worn at back of the waist, grip right, by the mid-late 16th c. I guess the shortest Cinqueda forms could be worn that way, but the only scabbards I've seen have channels for suspension thongs. Maybe the scabbard could be thrust through the belt in the fashion of Bowie knives. If experimenting, remember that the Renaissance waist was at the level of the naval, not at the hips.
Just as an experiment I've held a ruler across that part of my own back. I'm 6'1", 190 lbs, and it looks like anything over 10.5" would be in the way of my arms. Breaking that down, you can subtract .5" for the scabbard. you'd need a grip of perhaps 3.5"-4". That leaves a blade of 6.5"-7". The width across my fingers at the second knuckle is just under 3".
(drawing...drawing...drawing)
okay, what I come up with looks like nothing so much as Roman pugio. Not a bad-looking little weapon at all. I don't know what size these snubbies were, though.

-Sean

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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Wed 26 Oct, 2011 12:39 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This arrangement is consistent with depictions of large daggers/messers/bauernwehr in Austrian artwork of the late 15th and early 16th c. Seems like it would be uncomfortable to have those big knives flopping around on strings, but it was very common.


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-Sean

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Leo Todeschini
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PostPosted: Wed 26 Oct, 2011 1:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Sean Flynt wrote
Quote:
This arrangement is consistent with depictions of large daggers/messers/bauernwehr in Austrian artwork of the late 15th and early 16th c. Seems like it would be uncomfortable to have those big knives flopping around on strings, but it was very common.


I used to reenact a few years back (haven't had the chance recently but will again) but in those days I used to wear a long dagger on a frog or at least quite tight to my belt. It was forever getting caught up in chairs and other stuff I was moving around.

For the first time in years I was wearing a long dagger on a cord a couple of weeks back and lspecifically noticed how it got caught up far less. Looks like it doesn't work, but in my recent experience I found it better.

Can't shed any light on cinquedea carrying though - sorry.

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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Wed 26 Oct, 2011 2:56 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Leo Todeschini wrote:
I used to reenact a few years back (haven't had the chance recently but will again) but in those days I used to wear a long dagger on a frog or at least quite tight to my belt. It was forever getting caught up in chairs and other stuff I was moving around.

For the first time in years I was wearing a long dagger on a cord a couple of weeks back and lspecifically noticed how it got caught up far less. Looks like it doesn't work, but in my recent experience I found it better.


I've had the same experience. Sometimes simple is better. Often things that are over-engineered are missing the original intent: usability.

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Thomas R.




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PostPosted: Thu 27 Oct, 2011 11:12 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

That's true: I am wearing my Aunlaz on a string and let it hang free down the side of my surcott. It snuggles up into the folds and I don't even notice it most of the time.

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Bryce Felperin




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PostPosted: Fri 28 Oct, 2011 10:12 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I find that if you wear a dagger at an angle with loose attachment, it rests better and doesn't get caught out in things as much. Also loose allows you to maneuver it out of things if it does get caught up in things easier. Small light items tied tight to your belt work, big ones don't.
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Jim Mearkle




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PostPosted: Fri 28 Oct, 2011 4:43 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Derrick's Image of Ireland (1581) show English troops with daggers affixed to the backs of their belts, but sadly without enough detail to see how.
http://www.lib.ed.ac.uk/about/bgallery/Galler...60_jpg.htm

Jim
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Allen Reed




Location: Northwest, IL
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PostPosted: Sat 29 Oct, 2011 1:49 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Sean Flynt wrote:
The main problem with such a statement is that these weapons come in a variety of lengths, some of which would be impractical for such carriage. It was common for a narrow dagger to be worn at back of the waist, grip right, by the mid-late 16th c. I guess the shortest Cinqueda forms could be worn that way, but the only scabbards I've seen have channels for suspension thongs. Maybe the scabbard could be thrust through the belt in the fashion of Bowie knives. If experimenting, remember that the Renaissance waist was at the level of the naval, not at the hips.
Just as an experiment I've held a ruler across that part of my own back. I'm 6'1", 190 lbs, and it looks like anything over 10.5" would be in the way of my arms. Breaking that down, you can subtract .5" for the scabbard. you'd need a grip of perhaps 3.5"-4". That leaves a blade of 6.5"-7". The width across my fingers at the second knuckle is just under 3".
(drawing...drawing...drawing)
okay, what I come up with looks like nothing so much as Roman pugio. Not a bad-looking little weapon at all. I don't know what size these snubbies were, though.


I have seen one painting from Renaissance Italy showing a cinqueda at the back but can't remember who the artist is. However, as I remember it really doesn't give the details needed to figure out how the knife is attached to the belt.

Allen
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Christopher Gregg




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PostPosted: Sat 29 Oct, 2011 7:38 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

When going to a faire, I wear my old Del Tin Cinquedea hanging from two thongs from my left hip, much like a short sword or large knife. Since it is tied into its sheath, I cannot say how practical it would be to draw it in a hurry, but it is comfortable to wear, folds neatly aside when sitting on a bench, and moves freely when I walk. The weapon and sheath together weigh about two pounds. Hope this sheds some light.
Christopher Gregg

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Len Parker





Joined: 15 Apr 2011

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PostPosted: Wed 25 Jan, 2012 11:00 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Some paintings showing cinquedeas attached at back http://www.tforum.info/forum/index.php?showtopic=27882
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Graham Shearlaw





Joined: 24 Oct 2011

Posts: 76

PostPosted: Thu 26 Jan, 2012 9:03 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

just looking at the first pic you can see that the dagger is placed so as not to get in the way of the powder flask but in a place that can be reached by both hands.
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