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Merv Cannon




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PostPosted: Thu 16 Nov, 2006 4:33 am    Post subject: Edward III "Bearing" Sword photos,St Georges Chape         Reply with quote

There is a great sword stuck up on a section of St Georges College Chapel, Windsor .......... http://www.stgeorges-windsor.org/history/hist_index.asp ...... reported to be the "Bearing" sword of Edward III and I was wondering if anyone has any decent pictures, close-up details or even better, and article or drawing of it. Perhaps some of you might know which books have reference to it ? It may not be a bearing sword but I am finding it hard to get any good historic information on it.
Thanks !



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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Thu 16 Nov, 2006 5:29 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

From our Edward III article:



It's a very similar pic to the one you showed. I've never seen any more than that, and I've looked.

I've seen it in person (briefly and from a distance). St. George's didn't allow any picture-taking when I was there.

It's big, but not as big as many bearing swords. It's certainly very, very large for its era, if I recall correctly. I believe Oakeshott called it a bearing sword, though it's been a while since I've done any reading on the subject.

Happy

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Edward Hitchens




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PostPosted: Thu 16 Nov, 2006 2:18 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

In the first draft of the article I wrote about Edward III, I mentioned that the blade has the profile of a Type XVII, but after looking closely at Chad's picture, I'm not so sure. The fourteenth century may be a bit early for XVII, especially in England. It almost looks like it has a wide fuller running the entire length of the blade. Is it just me, or is there a ricasso just above the cross? The grip looks as though it has been perfectly preserved (unless it's a modern replacement).
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Richard Fay




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PostPosted: Thu 16 Nov, 2006 9:14 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hello all!

I did some digging through my books, and found mention of this sword in Oakeshott's Records of the Medieval Sword. He considered it to be a type XIIIa. Keep in mind that Oakeshott sometimes shifted swords from one type to another, but he also put some swords into his typology that may be different from the "norm" for that type (the rather odd type XVIIIa with fairly parallel edges, a long ricasso, and an extremely sharply-defined mid-rib that he showed in Records as Type XVIIIa. 7 is one example.) A closer inspection of this sword may place it in another type category, who knows?

Anyway, here's what Oakeshott said about this sword in Records of the Medieval Sword:
Ewart Oakeshott wrote:

The type XIIIa's vary greatly in size, some being true two-hand swords. A prime example of such an outsize one is the sword of Edward III in St. George's Chapel in Windsor Castle, which has been there since the Order of the Garter - or at least, St. George's Chapel, was founded in the mid - 14 th century. This sword is overall more than six feet long, yet its proportions are such that it must be classified as an XIIIa.

I looked around, and couldn't find any other mention of this sword. I could dig deeper into my library and see what I can come up with, but I'm not sure I've ever seen it elsewhere.

I hope this tidbit of information was at least slightly useful!

Stay safe!

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Merv Cannon




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PostPosted: Thu 16 Nov, 2006 10:26 pm    Post subject: Edward III Bearing Sword         Reply with quote

Thanks Richard , Edward, Chad...........Its suprising (or mabye not ! ) that so little has been documented about this Historic Sword ! I guess that when people live in countries that are dripping in History all around them, they sort of take it all for granted......thanks for the input....every bit helps. You see, I just got the Hanwei version of the Edward III war sword, and I must say that laying it next to the photos of the original, it looks identical even down to the adder-skin grip ! Its very sharp and pointy !! Now, my good friend is a dealer here for these and other merchandise.... http://www.themedievalemporium.com/ .......( if fact, if I may humbly give myself a quick plug, if you go to the " Furiture and Wooodcraft " page,.... that's all my stuff ) ...but Im back to doing Arms and Armour right now. Anyhow, he's a big fan of Edward and son and asked if I had any reference for the bearing sword. I'd certinally like to get some good photos or a drawing from somewhere for my own files.
Cheers !

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Greg Coffman




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PostPosted: Thu 16 Nov, 2006 10:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I feel like this is a safe place to confess ignorance. What is a bearing sword?
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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Thu 16 Nov, 2006 10:40 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Greg Coffman wrote:
I feel like this is a safe place to confess ignorance. What is a bearing sword?


A "bearing sword" is a sword carried for ceremonial purposes during parades, processions, and the like. They are not used for combat, but rather as a symbol. As such, they are impressive in their presentation, generally being of large size and having ornate styling.

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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Fri 17 Nov, 2006 7:08 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Edward Hitchens wrote:
In the first draft of the article I wrote about Edward III, I mentioned that the blade has the profile of a Type XVII, but after looking closely at Chad's picture, I'm not so sure. The fourteenth century may be a bit early for XVII, especially in England. It almost looks like it has a wide fuller running the entire length of the blade. Is it just me, or is there a ricasso just above the cross? The grip looks as though it has been perfectly preserved (unless it's a modern replacement).


That's why we took out the Type XVII text. Happy The only pic most of us have seen (the one above) makes it unclear. However, Type XVII swords were popular from 1355 to 1425, so it's not out of the realm of possibility for later in Edward's life.

My own hazy recollection from seeing it is that it doesn't taper enough to be a Type XVII.

Happy

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Richard Fay




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PostPosted: Fri 17 Nov, 2006 9:28 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hello all!

This doesn't say much more, although it gives a length. Here's what the web site for St. George's Chapel said about the two-handed sword of Edward III:
St. George's Chapel, Windsor wrote:

This two-handed sword is 6ft 8 1/4 inches long and was probably displayed over the stall of Edward III in the chapel he reordered for the college and Order of the Garter, now the Albert Memorial Chapel.

I know the link to their web site was posted at the beginning of this thread, but I thought having the information here would be helpful.

I'll do a bit more digging!

Stay safe!

"I'm going to do what the warriors of old did! I'm going to recite poetry!"
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