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Neal Colleran




Location: Bluffton, SC, USA
Joined: 09 Apr 2015

Posts: 14

PostPosted: Thu 07 Jan, 2016 9:39 am    Post subject: Common Irish sword types between 10th and 16th century         Reply with quote

I was curious as to what types of swords were historically accurate and commonly used in Ireland between the 10th and 16th century. I know that pre Viking the swords were Roman-esque, and the la tene blades. I'm more curious about the centuries I have specified.

I'm guessing the 10th century the Irish would have adopted the type X due to the Viking influence.
And pictures I have found lead me to believe the Type XIX usually with open ring hilts were also common. The type XIX was something seen in Spain and the Irish have a genetic and political connection to Spain as well.

I saw some reproduction blades with type XVIII profiles but I wasn't sure if that were accurate.

Perhaps someone more knowledgeable on the subject can give me other blade profile examples that were common.

- Neal Colleran
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Jeffrey Faulk




Location: Georgia
Joined: 01 Jan 2011

Posts: 578

PostPosted: Thu 07 Jan, 2016 11:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

My understanding is that the ring hilt, while distinctive, is a late period style (but I could certainly be wrong). In general they would have used largely the same styles as the rest of Western Europe, with a few decades' lag to allow for their distance from the rest of civilization, so you would have seen older styles of sword being used alongside a few more modern blades. Also, they never really went in for plate armour on a large scale from what I recall-- fabric and mail protection being more common their style-- so cutting blades hung on for much longer.
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Mark Lewis





Joined: 19 Apr 2014

Spotlight topics: 1
Posts: 354

PostPosted: Thu 07 Jan, 2016 7:43 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jeffrey Faulk wrote:
My understanding is that the ring hilt, while distinctive, is a late period style (but I could certainly be wrong). In general they would have used largely the same styles as the rest of Western Europe

I agree with what Jeffrey has said here. One other localized feature of interest is the use of what are probably better known as a Scottish style of sword, with distinctive spatulate quillons - proto-claymores essentially.

An article titled Irish Medieval Swords c. 1170-1600 by Andrew Halpin may be of interest to you; it describes a number of archeological finds covering the whole time period, and illustrates a fairly clear progression from conventional European styles, to the Scottish-influenced style, then finally the ring-hilts.

http://www.jstor.org/stable/25506140?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents
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