Info Favorites Register Log in
myArmoury.com Discussion Forums

Forum index Memberlist Usergroups Spotlight Topics Search
Forum Index > Off-topic Talk > Rapiers used by the French Musketeers circa 1625 Reply to topic
This is a standard topic  
Author Message
Steven Boeckel





Joined: 01 Apr 2007

Posts: 2

PostPosted: Thu 05 Apr, 2007 7:07 pm    Post subject: Rapiers used by the French Musketeers circa 1625         Reply with quote

I am new to the forum and have not been able to find answers to the following questions. I am interested to know if the french musketeers circa 1625 were issued a standard rapier or did they carry a rapier of their own personal choice? Also, did they prefer a cup hilt design or the swept hilt style? Also does anybody know the swordsmith who developed the clam shell cup hilt rapiers used by the musketeers in the 1973/74 movies the Three and Four Musketeers with Oliver reed and Michael York? Are functional replicas of these weapons available anywhere? Any help with these questions will be greatly appreciated...Thanks in advance.
View user's profile Send private message
Vincent Le Chevalier




Location: Paris, France
Joined: 07 Dec 2005
Reading list: 15 books

Spotlight topics: 1
Posts: 843

PostPosted: Sat 07 Apr, 2007 7:02 am    Post subject: Re: Rapiers used by the French Musketeers circa 1625         Reply with quote

Hello!
Steven Boeckel wrote:
I am new to the forum and have not been able to find answers to the following questions. I am interested to know if the french musketeers circa 1625 were issued a standard rapier or did they carry a rapier of their own personal choice? Also, did they prefer a cup hilt design or the swept hilt style?


I have a book here (Les armes blanches : sabres et épées, by Dominique Venner) which states that the first mention of an official regulation about swords in the French army appears in a letter from Louvois, written in 1679. The letter tells how the king decided to replace the weapons of his cavalry by what was called "sabres" then. Apparently the meaning of "sabre" was just a sword able to strike with edge and point... The king ordered a good quantity of swords to this effect, made at Solingen. They were a form of walloon sword, a sturdy design with a quite simple hilt.

Since the musketeers fought on horseback as well, they must have used these, but later than the period you are interested in. Earlier the weapons were left to the appreciation of the captains... However, it's likely in my opinion that the musketeers did carry such kind of sword in battle earlier. And of course, since many musketeers were noblemen, they may well have had personal rapiers for civil life... And the design of these must have been just as varied as the tastes of their owner.

In my opinion, a swept hilt rapier is more likely at this time in France, from what I have seen in illustrations and museums. But a cup-hilt from Spain is totally possible as well...

Regards

--
Vincent
Ensis Sub Caelo
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Peter Bosman




Location: Andalucia
Joined: 22 May 2006

Posts: 598

PostPosted: Sat 07 Apr, 2007 11:42 am    Post subject: Re: Rapiers used by the French Musketeers circa 1625         Reply with quote

Vincent Le Chevalier wrote:
walloon sword, a sturdy design with a quite simple hilt.


The 'walloon' is so alike that could be confused with a 'scottish' mortuary sword. I write 'scottish' as it may be a design transferred there from the Low Countries as the dutch king William was king of scotland too.
It is a typical horseman's arm although several rulers of the Low Countries fitted their whole army out with it.
Not quíte a rapier however...

Btw, it always surprises me that musketeers are só associated with a sidearm although their name is rather clearly pointing to a fírearm Razz

Peter
View user's profile
David Donovan




Location: Wichita, KS
Joined: 28 Apr 2006
Reading list: 6 books

Posts: 33

PostPosted: Sat 26 Jan, 2008 1:13 am    Post subject: Good musketeer sources?         Reply with quote

I'm not sure if reviving old threads is the preferred way of doing things, but I was recently pondering a similar question and found this thread through the forum search and thought I'd post here rather than starting a new topic.

I recently purchased a nice musketeer tabard through the marketplace here, and then thought to myself "Now I need a rapier to go with it." But then I stopped and thought "Wait. Really? A rapier? Is that right?" It seemed the natural assumption based on years of images from movies and books and old Tom & Jerry cartoons from my childhood... but this thread confirms my suspicions that they might have actually carried something else, especially on the battlefield (But maybe a rapier off the battlefield? Or even a smallsword later on?).

So I thought I'd ask if there are any recommended books or internet sources about the equipment/uniforms of the French musketeers, particularly one that shows the changes over time. I've browsed around a bit, but everything I've found tended to be more focused on organization/history rather than armament/uniforms.

Quote:
Btw, it always surprises me that musketeers are só associated with a sidearm although their name is rather clearly pointing to a fírearm


I was thinking the same thing, that if I wanted to be truly original I would show up as a musketeer actually carrying a musket (collective gasp!) .

"Do something meaningful in this meaningless world."
Takasugi Shinsaku (1839-1867)
View user's profile Send private message
Anders Backlund




Location: Sweden
Joined: 24 Oct 2007

Posts: 629

PostPosted: Sat 26 Jan, 2008 4:06 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Wait, so the musketeers didn't use rapiers as a standard sidearm? Eek!

Way to break one of my last illusions, you guys! Razz

The sword is an ode to the strife of mankind.

"This doesn't look easy... but I bet it is!"
-Homer Simpson.
View user's profile Send private message


Display posts from previous:   
Forum Index > Off-topic Talk > Rapiers used by the French Musketeers circa 1625
Page 1 of 1 Reply to topic
All times are GMT - 8 Hours

View previous topic :: View next topic
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum
You cannot attach files in this forum
You can download files in this forum






All contents © Copyright 2003-2018 myArmoury.com — All rights reserved
Discussion forums powered by phpBB © The phpBB Group
Switch to the Basic Low-bandwidth Version of the forum