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Greg Coffman




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PostPosted: Thu 04 Jan, 2007 8:10 am    Post subject: Non-historic grips         Reply with quote

I understand that grips that feature half leather and half chain are considered ahistoric. apparently there is an antique sword that was either rehilted in this manner after the original grip was lost or the sword was always a fake, although a very good one. I am interested in learning about this particular sword and the evidence against historical grips of half leather, half chain.

For reference to what I am refereing to, here is a link to Christian Fletcher's site which demonstrates the grip on an Albion Landgraf: (notice the "Gothic" title)

http://www.christianfletcher.com/Site/Landgraf.html

Personally, I think this style of grip is very aesthetically pleasing but I have perceived some bias against it in historic communities and am interested in learning the source of this bias.

Thank you.

For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
-Hebrews 4:12
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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Jan, 2007 8:38 am    Post subject: Re: Non-historic grips         Reply with quote

Greg,
Grips that are wrapped with leather on one part and twisted/braided wire on another are not necessarily ahistoric. However, they weren't popular in every period. I see it as a late 15th century style, though it may be earlier. I've always felt that putting that wrap on the Landgraf married a late 15th century (or so) grip with an early 15th century sword. That's why I dislike the combination, and it's a personal preference thing.

A similar grip survives on a sword in the Royal Armouries that may be from the 19th century in the style of the 15th century. See here for more info: http://bjorn.foxtail.nu/h_gbs_eng.htm .

Here's what Bjorn says about the sword's grip:

Quote:
The Grip
The 8.3" (21.2 cm) grip is slightly waisted, easily accommodating both hands. The lower half is leather-covered wood, where cord (?) shapes a distinct "X" under the leather, while the upper half is wood wound with metal wire. The style is one seen in many swords after 1350, which corresponds with the rest of the hilt. A similar grip can be seen on the effigy of Johan Georg von Waldburg, who died c. 1470. Few, if any, are preserved.


Here is what Ewart Oakeshott says about them in The Sword in the Age of Chivalry:

Quote:
The long dual-shaped grips of the 15th century, particularly the second half of it, were often covered differently in each half. The lower might be covered with leather, while the upper bound with wire (or vice-versa). Sometimes the upper part was made of solid metal.


There is pictorial evidence for those kind of grips, though very few surviving examples are known.

Happy

ChadA

http://chadarnow.com/
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Craig Johnson
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Jan, 2007 8:45 am    Post subject: Grip styles         Reply with quote

Hi Greg

In any particular case a certain grip maybe a later addition and not the same style that was originally there. The variety of grips on historic examples is huge. The type pictured in Christians piece is certainly a historic style. I am not sure why you are calling it chain as these style are straight or twisted wire not chain link.

I hope I understood your question correctly and answered your specific query.

Best

Craig
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Greg Coffman




Location: Lubbock, TX
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Jan, 2007 9:18 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thank you both for the feedback. This is certainly and area where I am unknowledgable. I am pleased to find out that this leather/wire grip may indeed be historical. That link was to the sword I was thinking of.
For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
-Hebrews 4:12
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Peter Johnsson
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Jan, 2007 10:38 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The combination of leather with partial wire wrap is indeed historical. It is a 15th C style. I think it belongs most typically to the latter part of the 15th C and into the first half of the 16th C..

This style fits perfectly on other swords in the Ng line:
-Regent
-Earl
-Munich
-Viceroy
-Possibly Fiore
-Possibly Ringeck (if the grip core of the Fiore is used)
Possibly also:
-Hauptmann
-Markgaf

It is worth noting that the partial wire wrap normally goes on a bottle shaped grip. The wrapped part is the narrow neck of the bottle. This shape can be very prominent. It is less usual to find partial wire wraps on cigar shaped grips.
The well known and often published gothic (probably fake) sword in the Royal Armouries Leeds, that has this partial wire wrap is less typical in that the wood core of the grip is shaped much like that of the Landgraf: a slender cigar. The shoulders are shaped with a hefty leather welt. It is feasible, I guess, but not the typical situation.

-Bottle shaped grip core core with slender neck, sword belonging to later part of 15th C: these are the prerequisites for this kind of grip.
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