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Gabriele Pratesi




Location: Florence, Italy
Joined: 30 Apr 2007

Posts: 7

PostPosted: Fri 13 Apr, 2012 7:05 am    Post subject: Sword of "unusual" typology?         Reply with quote

Hello everyone,
has anyone idea of the kind of typology this sword in attach must be attributed to?
Has a mark as a capital S with splitted ends at the forte and very long quillons ( 27 cm guard on a 90,5 of total length from point to tip).
The blade appears to have been recut at the point , but probably not too much as length.
Seems to me from the second part of the XIII century and was found in a marble grave in a church in Tuscany many years ago.
Has been stabilized and the unstable patination ( very aggressive ) has been removed to the very "salt and pepper" level of patination.
Any comment and suggestion would be appreciated.
Gabriele



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Sam Barris




Location: San Diego, California
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PostPosted: Fri 13 Apr, 2012 7:31 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

XIII or XIIIb, perhaps?
Pax,
Sam Barris

"Any nation that draws too great a distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards, and its fighting done by fools." —Thucydides
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Gabriele Pratesi




Location: Florence, Italy
Joined: 30 Apr 2007

Posts: 7

PostPosted: Fri 13 Apr, 2012 7:38 am    Post subject: Oakeshott XIII         Reply with quote

Hello,
the fuller is broad and longer than the type XIII, is much more similar to Xa or XI typology... Doesn't seem to be remounted on a later type of guard and grip. I just found a similar sword ( except for the pommel) published by Scalini as an "Escaut valley swordsmith from the XII century" in an Italian exhibition of some years ago.
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Peter Johnsson
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Location: Storvreta, Sweden
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PostPosted: Fri 13 Apr, 2012 7:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Interesting sword!

Because of the proportions of the hilt, I think the sword is of a rather early date. Impression is that it might be 12th century. If so, the pommel is an early example of its type. Not extremely so, but a brazil nut pommel is more commonly found on swords of this type and date.
Blade type might be possible to pin point according to the Geibig typology, as does the guard.

Nice to know that this sword has a certain provenance. There are so many fakes on the market today. To my eyes it does look authentic, but that is famously difficult to judge from photos alone.

I would love to learn more about this sword. It fits right in with time period and type to a current line of research.
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Jeremy V. Krause




Location: Buffalo, NY.
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PostPosted: Fri 13 Apr, 2012 8:24 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yes, this is a really interesting weapon. I don't believe I have seen a form quite like this, especially, if Peter is correct, in dating it to the 12th. c.

Is the "s" at the forte inlayed or are there signs that it once was?
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Patrick Kelly




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PostPosted: Fri 13 Apr, 2012 9:06 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

A remounting of an earlier blade with (then) current furniture perhaps?
"In valor there is hope.".................. Tacitus
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JE Sarge
Industry Professional



PostPosted: Fri 13 Apr, 2012 9:50 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Very interesting piece indeed. Thank you for sharing it with us.

Do you have any photos before the cleaning of the sword or in situ at the location where it was found?

J.E. Sarge
Crusader Monk Sword Scabbards and Customizations
www.crusadermonk.com

"But lack of documentation, especially for such early times, is not to be considered as evidence of non-existance." - Ewart Oakeshott
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Roger Hooper




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PostPosted: Fri 13 Apr, 2012 11:00 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

How about type XIa?

This type is very uncommon - In Oakeshott's Records there is only one example. It is characterized by a broader blade with a narrow fuller. Perhaps the fuller on your example is too wide.



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XIa
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Bruno Giordan





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PostPosted: Fri 13 Apr, 2012 11:55 am    Post subject: Re: Sword of "unusual" typology?         Reply with quote

Gabriele Pratesi wrote:
Hello everyone,
has anyone idea of the kind of typology this sword in attach must be attributed to?
Has a mark as a capital S with splitted ends at the forte and very long quillons ( 27 cm guard on a 90,5 of total length from point to tip).
The blade appears to have been recut at the point , but probably not too much as length.
Seems to me from the second part of the XIII century and was found in a marble grave in a church in Tuscany many years ago.
Has been stabilized and the unstable patination ( very aggressive ) has been removed to the very "salt and pepper" level of patination.
Any comment and suggestion would be appreciated.
Gabriele


Didn't the grave have a date on it? very beautiful piece.
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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Fri 13 Apr, 2012 1:14 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The pommel reminds me of the famous Xa.1. example. Oakeshott dated this sword to around 1150 but this dating seems a bit controversial. Some state the middle of the 13th, and even the first half of the 14th. c.

The more I look at this specimen the more curious I become. Happy
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J.D. Crawford




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PostPosted: Fri 13 Apr, 2012 7:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

What a magnificant sword! For what its worth, these are my thoughts:

Blade reminiscent of Geibig 10a, but too short. Formally I would call it Oakeshott type Xa which puts it at an earlier date. However, if you ignore the long fuller its profile is very similar to some of the wide XIII swords of 13th-14th century. In reality there were transitional forms like this between what we call Xa and XIII. In classifying XIII swords, Oakeshott himself often ignored the fuller length and went with the overall profile, so some days he might have called this sword an XIIIb.

Long type 1 cross appears with some earlier type X swords but was also popular in larger central European warswords of 13-14th century, and appears even later on bastard swords, so that's not much help.

Type I pommel popular in 13th century but appears earlier. The short handle would tend to suggest earlier.

This is just one of those tough ones that could go either way, but on the safe side one might vote for early 13th century.

-JD
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Gabriele Pratesi




Location: Florence, Italy
Joined: 30 Apr 2007

Posts: 7

PostPosted: Sat 14 Apr, 2012 12:33 am    Post subject: Other informations         Reply with quote

Hello everyone and many thanks for all your suggestions!
I want just to reply to some questions arosen:
- the grip was checked by Mr. Dobson before the cleaning and in his opinion wasn't changed or remounted in a later date than the blade ( I don't remember his explanations about this point of view, sorry).
- the grave , according to the earlier collector that stated that was in his family possession since at least one century, was moved from an ancient small church ( or chapel) from the XI-XII century that was abandoned for centuries when the entire hamlet was restored by his family.
- the hamlet was in the sourroundings of present day Poggibonsi in the Siena province. I was there but unfortunately nowadays the chapel and the buildings are hosting a capitol of cloistered nuns (!!!! OMG any possibility to get in).
-I know that in that chapel are hosted tombs originally excavated there and even some tombs moved from a Templar "commenda" not far from http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castello_della_Magione and they were moved almost in the same period, so how can you be sure of the right tomb????
- In effect the pommel shape is "quite rude", meaning that the form hasn't any movement, is quite straight but on the small faces you can see an incision similar to waving or that of false marble stone veins ( I'll manage to post a close up photo soon), so probably could be of an earlier date or one "first" example of the type.
-I attach an image of the earlier state when I found it, just after the stabilization and the removal of the glossy layer of the patination, and again sorry for the image but was intended to show the proportions on hand ( I must say that it's still very balanced, even if a part of the point seem to have been removed).
I'll try to give you all the best informations I can, so be patient if I'm not so professional in my descriptions.
Thanks



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Gabriele Pratesi




Location: Florence, Italy
Joined: 30 Apr 2007

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PostPosted: Sat 14 Apr, 2012 1:10 am    Post subject: Mark         Reply with quote

Sorry I forgot one reply:
- Yes the mark appears to have been inlayed probably in gold, there're some remnants inside and they're too shiny to be brass, but that's my impression.
The fact is that it was inlayed certainly and not in copper and that on the other face I didn't find any certain trace of another symbol, but probably due to a lesser preservation in the same point....
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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Sat 14 Apr, 2012 6:08 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thank you Gabriele,

If this sword is to be dated to the 12th. c. this would be an early example of gold inlaying. I know we begin seeing it in the 13th.

Really interesting, and a great picture of the sword "in hand."

Great stuff
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Luka Borscak




Location: Croatia
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PostPosted: Sat 14 Apr, 2012 7:11 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

If the tip is shortened, this sword might well have been XIIIb when new. And if I had to guess, I would say early 13th century, but it might also be 12th as Peter says...
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Paul Hansen




Location: The Netherlands
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PostPosted: Sun 15 Apr, 2012 2:13 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I think that Geibig typology is in this case more useful than Oakeshott.

Since Geibig lists clear definitions of his types by proportions, it may be a good idea to measure the sword if possible.

Geibig distinguishes (page 83):
- Fuller length
- Fuller width
- Fuller taper over the first 40cm from the guard
- Blade length
- Blade width
- Blade taper over the first 60cm from the guard
- Fuller length / Blade length ratio
- Form of edges and point

I've also attached a matrix linking Geibig blade type and inlays.



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Geibig blade type and inlay matrix.jpg

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