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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Wed 01 Dec, 2004 12:31 pm    Post subject: question for PJ and albion         Reply with quote

I seek the opinion of the well informed and so I turn to Peter or others with sound knowledge regarding my question-
I am interested in a specific sword and or typical sword configuation great/war sword that may be firmly dated between 1050-1200. My only sources of examples are in Oakeshott''s works (Records XIIIa 11, XIIIa 13).
As Albion currently has no plans for great swords of this period I may have to turn custom. Granted, I love the Baron and Duke but these cannot be dated within this frame and I want to move chronologically with my collection. And so I want to know of typical pommel, cross, and blade types for this period, or if you guys at Albion have some data on either of the afore mentioned swords sufficient to reproduce a custom piece. Are there any examples of type XIIa that would fit in this time frame?
Thanks so much for your time and I will take this opportunity to express my great satisfaction with my Norman and Templar. Anyone interested in high middle age single handers can't go wrong with these- now if only I had a great sword to accompany them. . . Wink
Jeremy
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Peter Johnsson
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PostPosted: Wed 01 Dec, 2004 3:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Great-swords from as early as 1050 would be very rare.
I have documented a great german sword-of-war that is dated by Alfred Geibig to the 11th C.

To me it seems corageous to put such an early date on a sword like this, but I am not willing to dispute the knowledge of Herr Geibig ;-)
The sword looks a bit like a big brother to the Gaddhjalt, only with three fullers (Yes I know: extremely rare!) and a wider flatter pommel.
If it had had a single fuller you might perhaps have classified it as a XIIa from the outline of the blade.
Other similar swords in the same cllection (yes, there were at least half a dozen really big early swords of war) had hilts like the "Ritter" but with grips that were long enough to barely give room for two hands. My impression is that you would have grasped the pommel partly or had the hands cramped well togther. They do not have the same lenght in the grip as later period hand and a half swords.
Blade length and overall dimensions of these are close to the "Baron" or "Duke" in the NG line.

This sword I documented is a candidate for the Museum Line, so please forgive me if I am not willing to share the exact dimensions at this date. We might see it in production in a year or two...It is an awesome sword :-)

Remember that early references to "great swords" in period texts does not have to mean hand and a half or two handers. There were exceedingly big single hand swords in use in this period, big enough to earn the title "great".
Sometimes you read that warriors used both hands to swing their weapons, but you can do that with a single hander as well.

Are you sure that it is a hand and a half or later period war sword you are looking for, but in early period guise? Might it not be a very big single hander that fulfills you needs?
The sword of Saint Maurice is a definite candidate in that case. That is truly a great weapon of war in every meaning of the word... Cool
It is dated to the early or mid 12 hundreds, depending on who you listen to.
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Jean Thibodeau




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PostPosted: Wed 01 Dec, 2004 6:05 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Peter;

I find that with the Gaddhjalt I have a single handed sword that has the blade lenght, to be or almost be, a hand and a half sword in feel but with a one handed grip: The blade presence just tempts me to use use it twohandedly, I started a thread a while back about the use of one handed swords with two hands and you have confirmed in your preceding post that there is just barely enough room if one hand cups the pommel or the to hand overlap somewhat.

In comparison my Sovereign feels "Absolutely" one handed: Using two hands would handicap use not enhance it unless one was at the point of absolute exhaustion and used both hand out of desperation.

To restate it simply: The Gaddhjalt feels to me to be at the border between a one hander and a hand and a half, almost the same blade presence of a hand and a half when used with one hand, as if the only thing missing is a longer handle.

(I imagine that the sword of Saint Maurice could be describbed as a Gaddhjalt on steroid and even more as above: Assuming that my guesswork above makes sense.)

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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Thu 02 Dec, 2004 7:53 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks so much for your response Peter!
My post shows my ignorance of sword development from the high middle ages into the age of transitional plate armor. I think this comes from my almost total reliance on the research of E. Oakshott. I assumed that swords of war in the 1050-1200 span would basically be like the Duke but with maybe plainer furniture. The two examples in Records appear to give ample room for two handed use.
I just have a lot to learn about sword development and especially need to think beyond Oakshott's typology (while acknowledging his invaluable contributions).
So this sword that you allude to Peter- would you be able to let us know if it's grip would allow for two handed use? I am very intrigued. . . The St. Maurice is a beautiful piece but it seems a solidly single handed design. I really want a sword that was oriented to use with both hands.
Thanks again for your time.
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Brian M




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PostPosted: Thu 02 Dec, 2004 9:01 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

While I feel that the Duke or Baron might suit your collection just fine, you might look at A&A's "12th Century Sword."

http://www.arms-n-armor.com/2000/catalog/images/089.jpg
http://www.arms-n-armor.com/2000/catalog/images/089detail.jpg

I wonder if this "12th Century Sword" is a semi-replica of the early greatsword Peter discusses? It does only have a single fuller, but the cross is gaddhjalt-like. Perhaps Peter can comment on this sword and it's dating relative to what he has seen in collections?

Brian M
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Einar Drønnesund





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PostPosted: Thu 02 Dec, 2004 10:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Brian M wrote:
While I feel that the Duke or Baron might suit your collection just fine, you might look at A&A's "12th Century Sword."

http://www.arms-n-armor.com/2000/catalog/images/089.jpg
http://www.arms-n-armor.com/2000/catalog/images/089detail.jpg

I wonder if this "12th Century Sword" is a semi-replica of the early greatsword Peter discusses? It does only have a single fuller, but the cross is gaddhjalt-like. Perhaps Peter can comment on this sword and it's dating relative to what he has seen in collections?

Brian M


I think the sword Peter talks about actually has a brazil nut pommel. He posted a pic of it on SFI once, some time ago. I dont think I have ever seen a bastard/longsword grip with a brazil nut before.
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Peter Johnsson
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PostPosted: Thu 02 Dec, 2004 12:07 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jeremy V. Krause wrote:
Thanks so much for your response Peter!
My post shows my ignorance of sword development from the high middle ages into the age of transitional plate armor. I think this comes from my almost total reliance on the research of E. Oakshott. I assumed that swords of war in the 1050-1200 span would basically be like the Duke but with maybe plainer furniture. The two examples in Records appear to give ample room for two handed use.
I just have a lot to learn about sword development and especially need to think beyond Oakshott's typology (while acknowledging his invaluable contributions).
So this sword that you allude to Peter- would you be able to let us know if it's grip would allow for two handed use? I am very intrigued. . . The St. Maurice is a beautiful piece but it seems a solidly single handed design. I really want a sword that was oriented to use with both hands.
Thanks again for your time.


Here you go :-)
The original from Bayerisches armée museum in Ingostadt.

-How in the worlkd can you imagine a more plain hilt on the Duke!?! Wink Big Grin If you go plainer it will be very dull!
I cannot imagine how that could be done. Wink Cool

Earlier does not always mean plainer. On the contrary, earlier often means more elaborate.

If you want a great sword for two hands you really should move forward in time to be on solid ground. If you are interested in the study of the great twohanded sword of war, then the 13th and 14th C is your main period of research.
Obviously there are some early examples but they are extremely rare. This is indeed a very rare and unusual sword you see in the pic.



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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Thu 02 Dec, 2004 12:07 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Brian M wrote:
While I feel that the Duke or Baron might suit your collection just fine, you might look at A&A's "12th Century Sword."


Yes, the Duke and Baron are great and they will suit my collection, but not yet.
They are dated at the earliest to 1275 which is a different environment to my current period 1050-1200 and I am moving chronologically.
Peter has stated that the great swords of the 1050-1200 period would have likely taken a different form than the typical XIIa's and XIIIa's shown in Records and the Duke and Baron. I want to see some examples of these earlier great swords. Thanks, Jeremy
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Peter Johnsson
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PostPosted: Thu 02 Dec, 2004 12:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jeremy V. Krause wrote:
Brian M wrote:
While I feel that the Duke or Baron might suit your collection just fine, you might look at A&A's "12th Century Sword."


Yes, the Duke and Baron are great and they will suit my collection, but not yet.
They are dated at the earliest to 1275 which is a different environment to my current period 1050-1200 and I am moving chronologically.
Peter has stated that the great swords of the 1050-1200 period would have likely taken a different form than the typical XIIa's and XIIIa's shown in Records and the Duke and Baron. I want to see some examples of these earlier great swords. Thanks, Jeremy


If you go back to 1200 and before you will not find many two handed swords of war. It will be a thin selection to study.
When they do occur they look like a a "Gaddhjalt" or a "Ritter" on stereoids. Room for two hands in the grip but only when held tight together.
I am myself reluctanty to place any such sword before 1200. Some scolars do and they might be righ. I don´t know...

Also, I would not be prepared to swear that sword like the "Duke" and "Baron" did not exist before 1275. That is just the start of their typical period of popularity. They might go back a few decades earlier yet, but I am not sure.
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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Thu 02 Dec, 2004 12:24 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ahh! Peter, It seems you posted while I was writting my last post,
So now I have a better idea- I guess single handed sword usage during my current period, along with a shield, would have been the norm. Are you saying that if I own a type Xa or two as I do and maybe a type XI single hander then I am basically giving a fair accounting for blades used during this time 1050-1200? What about single edge swords? I know the Norwegian's show an affinity for them- what about on the Continent? Will Albion be making an earlier single edge like the Vassal?
Bottom line- I want to cover the weapons of this period before I move on, or maybe back into the Viking period. I am in no hurry so it makes no difference how long I remain focussed on this era, which is currently my favourite.
Thanks again, Jeremy
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Brian M




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PostPosted: Thu 02 Dec, 2004 1:12 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jeremy, to fill out your collection within that time period you might consider one of the shorter type-Xs, like the upcoming Bayeaux/Reeve. I don't think a representative collection of that era should be without one of these. Holding the date to 1200 and excluding Viking types, I think the best fits for your collection would be: Bayeaux/Reeve, Ritter/Templar, Thegn, and possibly SoSMT.

Brian M
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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Thu 02 Dec, 2004 1:24 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yes,
I am intrigued by the Bayeux/Reeve and maybe the Hopitaller (I did name it BTW Wink )
I have a Norman and Templar. I do believe, however, that Peter dated the Ritter after 1200 if I am not mistaken.
Maybe the thegn if it is proper for the time period. . . I don't know.
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Brian M




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PostPosted: Thu 02 Dec, 2004 1:48 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

You already have two long -Xa swords, so go for the short -X! I think the brazilnut-pommel Reeve would contrast nicely with your collection as you already have a disc-pommel Norman.

Brian M
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Joseph C.




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PostPosted: Fri 03 Dec, 2004 12:27 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

From looking at period manuscripts and sculpture, to fill out your collection well, you need to add a Gaddhjalt-like sword; one with a hilt that looks a lot like a Viking type H, but with a Xa blade; and a shorter bladed X or Xa (it is hard for me to tell which). Unfortunately, I do not know of any manufacturer making the second kind of sword. But hey, Albion makes (or is going to) the other two types. Happy ... Just my 2 cents.
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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Sun 05 Dec, 2004 8:18 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Sorry for my delay in replying everyone,
I am very intrigued by the designs of the Reene and Bayeaux and after some time looking these shorter type X's up it does seem that these would be a valid acquistion.

Peter I am especially interested in the brazil nut design on the Reenes pommel. I really like this pommel type. I am wondering if this is a commonly seen brazil nut (kind of like an American football) design in the period or represents a certain specific geography or era? I do see many variation on the brazil nut in Records and Archeology. . . and I will be receiving The Sword in the. . . soon so I will have more examples.

Also Peter do you have any information on an appropriate single edge sword design for the period 1050-1200. Could the Thegn still be in use or is it too early.

Also to everyone- do you know of any period maces or polearms represented. I have heard that information that pole weapons is very rare.

I hope that all of this discussion is helpful to someone else besides myself. It seems that I am using this thread primarilly for the rather selfish aim of giving me information regarding my collection habits.
Thanks , Happy Jeremy
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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Sun 05 Dec, 2004 8:51 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hello everyone,
O my last post when I wrote Thegn I meant Beserkr. Happy
Jeremy
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William P




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PostPosted: Sat 17 Mar, 2012 4:26 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

sorry for the extreme thread necro, but im wondering if theres been any update on PJ's 2 handed 11th century greatsword

i.e the 2 handed gaddjalt sword, he said he might make something out of it, has he?
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Luka Borscak




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PostPosted: Sat 31 Mar, 2012 1:21 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

If Albion was to make that sword, either as Next Gen or Museum Line, I would sell my kidney, part of my liver and my younger brother and buy that sword. I have seen a picture of it from Herr Geibig's book. It's really something.
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J.D. Crawford




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PostPosted: Sat 31 Mar, 2012 1:41 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I've seen pictures of it too. Its a bit visually disconcerting (in a good way) to see a 3 fuller blade so similar to a typical 15th century longsword, except without the central ridge and ricasso, combined with a brazil nut. Indeed, with a scent stopper pommel you'd have to look twice or three times to realize something was off. I have no idea why Albion or PJ chose to shelve that project, but I suspect its too much of a niche item. A few of us would go gaga over it, but most people would find it odd.

Good candidate for a custom piece!
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