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Andrea Baker




Location: New York
Joined: 29 Feb 2016

Posts: 3

PostPosted: Mon 29 Feb, 2016 1:50 pm    Post subject: Two Unidentified Maker's Marks on Rapiers         Reply with quote

Hello,

I am the manager of a small estates auction house and we've just had two very interesting looking rapiers come in for our next sale. We have narrowed things down to thinking that they are both likely German and 16th century, but there are maker's marks on them that I'd like to identify.

Pictures of both are on-line here:

http://nyshowplace.hibid.com/lot/23953369/orn...ef=catalog

http://nyshowplace.hibid.com/lot/23953367/swe...ef=catalog

I'm hoping someone here might recognize them.

Thanks,
Andrea[/code]

Andrea Baker
Auction Manager
Showplace Antique + Design Center
40 West 25th Street
New York, NY 10010
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Shahril Dzulkifli




Location: Malaysia
Joined: 13 Dec 2007
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Posts: 1,265

PostPosted: Wed 02 Mar, 2016 7:51 am    Post subject: Two Unidentified Maker's Marks on Rapiers         Reply with quote

Do you mean these, Andrea?





“You have power over your mind - not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength”

- Marcus Aurelius
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Andrea Baker




Location: New York
Joined: 29 Feb 2016

Posts: 3

PostPosted: Wed 02 Mar, 2016 8:57 am    Post subject: Re: Two Unidentified Maker's Marks on Rapiers         Reply with quote

Yes! Thank you for posting the photos directly.
Andrea Baker
Auction Manager
Showplace Antique + Design Center
40 West 25th Street
New York, NY 10010
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Elric Rabenfels




Location: Britain/Germany
Joined: 28 Jan 2014

Posts: 40

PostPosted: Wed 02 Mar, 2016 9:48 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This one:



Looks like a "Passau Wolf" mark used in the 15th century (And very similar variation of it in the 16th), and is therefore most likely made in Passau, Germany.

- What can change the nature of a man?
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E.B. Erickson
Industry Professional



Location: Thailand
Joined: 23 Aug 2003

Posts: 436

PostPosted: Fri 04 Mar, 2016 3:36 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

OK, I'm not the most savvy person when it comes to online operations, but I do have a question for the OP.

I have registered on the auction site, and have no trouble logging in. BUT, how does one find out what the current bid price on a lot is? I have been all over the site and the catalog, and can't find the current bids on anything.

Thanks for your help!

--ElJay
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E.B. Erickson
Industry Professional



Location: Thailand
Joined: 23 Aug 2003

Posts: 436

PostPosted: Fri 04 Mar, 2016 3:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have seen similar marks to those on the swords in the auction; the problem is remembering where!

The best I can come up with is for you to find the thread on this forum entitled "Examples of later bastard sword hilts". There are several swords illustrated that have similar marks on the ricasso to what yours have, but there aren't many closeups in the thread. However, if nothing else, the similar marks confirms that your dating of the swords is pretty much correct.

This wasn't of much help, but I'll keep looking around!

--ElJay
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Andrea Baker




Location: New York
Joined: 29 Feb 2016

Posts: 3

PostPosted: Fri 04 Mar, 2016 8:29 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Elric, thank you for the information!

ElJay, thanks for your interest, and information as well. Regarding our auction site: the current bids aren't visible because we aren't running an online auction. We are a traditional auction house, using this online catalogue simply as one more method of accepting absentee bids. These bids, however, won't be combined until each lot comes up for bidding during the sale. You are welcome to bid through the online catalogue, by phone, or even in person if you're in the NYC area. Our contact/bidding info, in further detail, is contained on each page of the online catalogue in a yellow text-box beginning "Absentee bids may now be submitted through..." You can also send us a PM for more help if you're still interested.

Thanks again to all,
Andrea

Andrea Baker
Auction Manager
Showplace Antique + Design Center
40 West 25th Street
New York, NY 10010
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Casey S.




Location: TX
Joined: 23 May 2015

Posts: 19

PostPosted: Fri 04 Mar, 2016 7:56 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The fact that they are both marked in the same exact spot and manner on the ricasso would lead me to wonder if they might be 19th or 20th century. Small mark with a dot or X on each side.

The guards definitely have the look of 19th C works of art.
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E.B. Erickson
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Location: Thailand
Joined: 23 Aug 2003

Posts: 436

PostPosted: Sat 05 Mar, 2016 5:39 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks, Andrea, that clears things up for me; if nothing else, I will be interested to see what these two swords go for.

Hey Casey, true about the marks being in a the same place on the ricasso, but take a look at the myArmoury thread that I mentioned above: marking the ricasso in this manner was pretty common in the late 1500s - early 1600s.

However, I did wonder if these are from the workshop of Ernst Schmidt. He worked in the early 1900s and was famous for making very nice copies of original items, and would often fit his hilts with genuine antique blades. I have read that his work was good enough that museums would be fooled into thinking that his swords were genuine antiques.

In looking at the photos provided, I don't see anything shouting "reproduction" at me; all the little details look right (except maybe for how the ricasso fits into the arms of the hilt - but that's a fairly weak maybe) as does the overall styling. But if these are Schmidt pieces, you'd expect the details and styling to be correct. Without examining the swords in person, it's hard to come to a firm conclusion either way!

--ElJay
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Casey S.




Location: TX
Joined: 23 May 2015

Posts: 19

PostPosted: Sat 05 Mar, 2016 5:54 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

E.B.,

I agree. The close up of the blades do in fact appear to be old metal.

A Victorian Schmidt or Conrad build around an older blade would make sense. When I said 20th C I should have been more clear. They do not appear to be modern copies.


Here is a mark on a parrying dagger in my collection. It resembles one of the marks above.

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Elric Rabenfels




Location: Britain/Germany
Joined: 28 Jan 2014

Posts: 40

PostPosted: Sat 05 Mar, 2016 7:17 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I concur... I am very certain about that mark I linked in my post being a 16th century Passau mark. I can provide sources if need be.

However, the rest of the piece, and especially the marks, don't make any sense in the 16th century context the Passau mark gives. As I haven't looked at marks from the 19/20th century, a rather modern maker using an antique please is rather possible.

- What can change the nature of a man?
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Jesse Belsky
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Location: Durham, NC
Joined: 12 Aug 2007

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Posts: 173

PostPosted: Sun 06 Mar, 2016 1:40 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The first hilt reminds me a bit of this rapier at the Royal Armory in Leeds that's on display among other 19th century replicas. I didn't take a picture of the display card, so i'm not sure who the maker was. I feel like i've seen that pine-cone or pineapple style pommel somewhere else too, but now I can't find the image....


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IMG_20160301_153200258_HDR (1 of 1).jpg

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Casey S.




Location: TX
Joined: 23 May 2015

Posts: 19

PostPosted: Sun 06 Mar, 2016 8:51 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Wow! Someone thought they were all original. I forgot exact number but Lot #88 sold for either $7000 or $7500 and #90 for $9000 or $9500. I forgot which one had the $500 attached.

After seeing better pictures, my opinion was- lot 88 was 16th C blade. The guard probably 16th C but possibly 19th C. The two did not originate together. The blade did not fit properly with the quillon block.

Lot #90 was a 16th C blade with a 19th C cast iron guard that was built to match the blade.
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