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Alexander Hinman




Location: washington, dc
Joined: 08 Oct 2005
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PostPosted: Mon 11 Jul, 2016 11:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

JG Elmslie wrote:

the details of the cross are ropey as hell, I'm seeing the sort of striations I'd expect off a slack belt sander without a platen, running something like a 80-120 grit belt. It is in no way medieval.


Popping in to agree with this completely. Those kind of relatively deep but narrow, straight grind marks don't come from a file or abrasive paper.

Quote:

At my most charitable, I'd say you have a lovely example of a mid-20th century, low-quality replica, probably from between the end of WW2 and 1980.


I realize you're being generous, but I think this is much more recent. On the tang in particular the colour and patterning of the rust strike me as being very recent. It's hard to put into words, but some of that rust is still active, and there are parts where the mill scale has popped off recently that are just starting to rust, and the scale itself seems a little too shiny to be very old. Like I say, it's hard to put a finger on, but I'd say it was made within the last month, though if its been hidden in an attic it could very well be as ancent as you say.
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Mark Griffin




Location: The Welsh Marches, in the hills above Newtown, Powys.
Joined: 28 Dec 2006

Posts: 801

PostPosted: Tue 12 Jul, 2016 1:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

As one of our politicians famously made the mistake of saying recently 'everyone is sick of experts'.

I'll say my comment was lighthearted.

The overwhelming opinion on here, backed up by a vast amount of academic and practical knowledge built up over decades of research and practical study is that your sword isn't medieval in any way Michal. There are only a couple of other online forums where such a breadth of skill in this subject is present, you asked our opinion and we gave it. There is nothing I can add to the overwhelming responses you have had other than to say it is up to you to decide whether it was made as a curio or made to deceive for profit. If it's you that's been deceived then I'm sorry, there are unscrupulous people about.

I think you've had an excellent critique of just why we think its a fake and I'd be genuinely surprised if anyone was able to authoritatively say otherwise.

Yours,

Mark Griffin

Employed as an opinionated expert and heritage consultant by by English Heritage, The National Trust, Victoria and Albert Museum, Landmark Trust, Historic Scotland, Royal Armouries, National Army Museum and many, many more.

Currently working on projects ranging from Elizabethan pageants to a WW1 Tank, Victorian fairgrounds 1066 events and more. Oh and we joust loads!.. We run over 250 events for English Heritage each year plus many others for Historic Royal Palaces, Historic Scotland, the National Trust and more. If you live in the UK and are interested in working for us just drop us a line with a cv.
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Sam Barris




Location: San Diego, California
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PostPosted: Wed 13 Jul, 2016 3:56 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The new pictures do little to sway me from my "someone's shop class project that got left out in the rain for a few days" theory. Sorry. I hope you didn't have too much riding on the sword's authenticity.
Pax,
Sam Barris

"Any nation that draws too great a distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards, and its fighting done by fools." —Thucydides
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Michal F





Joined: 09 Jul 2016

Posts: 5

PostPosted: Thu 28 Jul, 2016 5:02 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thank You for sharing your indeed overwhelmingly vast academical knowledge about swords, it must have taken a lot of research to know so much about the subject;) Still, I am sure that the sword is authentic, got some facts about its origin, moreover parts of the wooden handle (!), and I only want to say that it really is a fantastic piece. I hope that everyone here could get to at least hold such antique in the future (if didn't already of course;)), only on that basis you can tell a lot. I wont be answering all "experts' opinions", again I want only to point out, that there were never 2 identical swords made. If you would look over our simple Internet, you can find authentic medieval swords that deny all of your arguments about lengths' proportions, fullers, rat tail tangs, you named it already. The sword is for sale, if anyone would be interested, I will gladly give more information and present the sword "in real".
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Nat Lamb




Location: Melbourne, Australia
Joined: 15 Jan 2009
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PostPosted: Thu 28 Jul, 2016 8:43 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

After the response you have received here, from both enthusiastic amateurs and actual experts, I do not think it would be good practice, or even ethical, to sell this sword as an authentic antique.
Were I in your position (which, admittadly, I am not) I would feel compelled to describe its origins as "contested" at best.


I do not have anywhere near the level of expertise or knowledge of anyone who has chimed in on this, but what I do have is a lot of experience analysing arguments and similar forms of reasoning. Your statement that there were never 2 swords made the same is a straw man argument, since the criticisms the others have made were not that this sword did not perfectly match another sword, but rather that there were so many differences between this sword and any one they knew of from the period you suggested that it came from that it was implausible that the claim was true.
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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Fri 29 Jul, 2016 2:56 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michal F wrote:
Thank You for sharing your indeed overwhelmingly vast academical knowledge about swords, it must have taken a lot of research to know so much about the subject;) Still, I am sure that the sword is authentic, got some facts about its origin, moreover parts of the wooden handle (!), and I only want to say that it really is a fantastic piece. I hope that everyone here could get to at least hold such antique in the future (if didn't already of course;)), only on that basis you can tell a lot. I wont be answering all "experts' opinions", again I want only to point out, that there were never 2 identical swords made. If you would look over our simple Internet, you can find authentic medieval swords that deny all of your arguments about lengths' proportions, fullers, rat tail tangs, you named it already. The sword is for sale, if anyone would be interested, I will gladly give more information and present the sword "in real".


Michal,

What are the "facts" about its origins? What compelling reasons are there to believe it's genuine?

You may not be aware, but the many of the antique medieval swords that you can find floating around on the “simple Internet” as you call it are fakes. So, unless you are extremely sure that a particular sword you see online is real—and, as mentioned, many are fake—simply stating that there are swords that contradict what we have said is not enough.

Moreover, it seems you do not understand how an evaluation is made for whether a sword is fake or not. People make the evaluation based upon the number of features of a particular antique that are unusual, irregular, or not found on other antique swords. The greater the number of unusual or unlikely features, the greater the probability that a sword is fake. If someone evaluating a sword can point out even 3 features that are unusual, unlikely or strange on a sword, then there is serious doubt that the sword is genuine.

By my count, your sword does not have 3 suspicious features. It has 11. Here they are again:

Fuller termination before cross
Proportions
Rat tail tang
Out of date blade type
Pommel design work
Rounded tang
No patina of the sort one would expect to find
Crude craftsmanship
Lenticular blade without fuller
Machine marks on the cross
Active rust

You said “No two medieval swords are the same”. The reality is that this sword is not even remotely similar to any genuine medieval swords. If you’re wondering why I say that it’s not even remotely similar, review the 11 problems above. I can even tell you that there are many known fake antique medieval swords that are much more believable and plausible than this sword.

The reality is that the sword’s provenance—where it came from—does little to guarantee that it is genuine. Was it dug up near the site of a known medieval battle? Great- someone obviously buried it there in modern times. Was it in a well-known collection? Unfortunately, there are lots of fake swords in well-known collections. Kept at a museum? Guess what—there are fakes at museums, too.

Ultimately, about the only thing that might believably demonstrate this sword was genuine was some sort of very intensive metallurgical analysis and comparison with metal from known antique swords. Even then, I would not trust such analysis unless I had reason to believe it came from an unbiased third party, and I would imagine that only part of the sword would be genuine.

As it stands, this sword with its 11 suspicious features spectacularly fails any visual test of authenticity. It looks nothing like a real medieval sword, and there is absolutely no reason to believe it is a real medieval sword.
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Gregory J. Liebau




Location: Dinuba, CA
Joined: 27 Nov 2004

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PostPosted: Fri 29 Jul, 2016 9:54 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

In my opinion this is a lost cause. Either he's deluded by the opinions of someone who claims to be an authority in this matter, or else he's paid far too much for the sword and desperately wants to recuperate his lost money, or he's simply a fraud. Almost every reasonable way of looking at this sword has been considered in context here already, and it has not swayed his judgment. Why should it if we continue repeating ourselves? Another false sword is on the market. Oh, well!

-Gregory
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Michal F





Joined: 09 Jul 2016

Posts: 5

PostPosted: Fri 29 Jul, 2016 1:05 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Oh well Gregory J. Liebau, if you are going to continue this discussion threaded by me, without even directing your answers to me, please leave it. I am going to answer all 11 arguments, that were clearly pointed, rather than wasting time on deluded by his suspicions individual.
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Gregory J. Liebau




Location: Dinuba, CA
Joined: 27 Nov 2004

Posts: 669

PostPosted: Fri 29 Jul, 2016 1:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michal F wrote:
Oh well Gregory J. Liebau, if you are going to continue this discussion threaded by me, without even directing your answers to me, please leave it. I am going to answer all 11 arguments, that were clearly pointed, rather than wasting time on deluded by his suspicions individual.


I already directly asked you a question in this thread which you did not answer at all. Please read the previous posts. I am also free to continue posting in this thread as much as I like, directing my questions or comments towards anyone who posts here. This is a public forum and the only people who have a right to say what others may say or do are the administrators.

You have thus far presented no solid academic research or arguments to support your claim that this is an authentic sword. Almost everyone who has posted in this thread is actually either an amateur scholar or expert on medieval swords and military history. I for one have a university degree in medieval history and write occasional professional articles for publications like Medieval Warfare magazine. I have spent no small number of hours studying the designs of original medieval swords in museums that I have visited and for more than fifteen years I have collected a sizeable library about medieval arms & armor. To put it simply, your sword has many details that separate it from hundreds of authentic medieval swords that are held in collections around the world.

It just so happens that almost every member of this prominent forum who has taken time to share their thoughts with you, also thinks the same thing. Many of these individuals have more credentials than me and it is worth listening to their opinions in earnest. It is a pity that you are unwilling to accept the basic fact that your sword does not have the qualities of an original.

I for one do not care if you sell the sword and call it authentic. I sit here on my free time an engage in conversations as the fancy strikes, but am not on a witch hunt. As David Hannum once said, "There's a fool born every minute." If you are trying to find that fool to sell a sword to, it is your business. Remember that it was you who asked for our opinions. Ask and ye shall receive!

-Gregory
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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Fri 29 Jul, 2016 2:51 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michal-

You are out of line. Your name-calling, your sarcasm, your personal attacks, and all the other out of bounds nonsense that you've shared with us during your brief membership on this site will cease immediately.

Please review our rules of conduct carefully before you post another thing on this site.

You've already received a moderator warning. No other warnings will be given. This is where it ends.

You are welcome to send me a private message should you want to ask me any questions or make a comment, but I expect no response from you here.

.:. Visit my Collection Gallery :: View my Reading List :: View my Wish List :: See Pages I Like :: Find me on Facebook .:.
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Joe Fults




Location: Midwest
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PostPosted: Fri 29 Jul, 2016 5:40 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michal F wrote:
Oh well Gregory J. Liebau, if you are going to continue this discussion threaded by me, without even directing your answers to me, please leave it. I am going to answer all 11 arguments, that were clearly pointed, rather than wasting time on deluded by his suspicions individual.


Going to ask again, did you make this sword yourself?

"Our life is what our thoughts make it"
-Marcus Aurelius

"Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable."
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Sam Barris




Location: San Diego, California
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PostPosted: Sun 31 Jul, 2016 12:38 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Looking at the picture of the tang entering the pommel, I notice two things which may or may not belong on the list. First, the hole drilled in the pommel seems unusually perfect compared with how rough the rest of the workmanship is. Incongruous to say the least. Second, it really looks like the hole is too wide (or the tang too narrow) and some kind of filler material had to be shoved in there to take up the extra space and keep the pommel from just sliding off. Does anyone else see that or am I imagining things?
Pax,
Sam Barris

"Any nation that draws too great a distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards, and its fighting done by fools." —Thucydides
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Paul Watson




Location: Upper Hutt, New Zealand
Joined: 08 Feb 2006

Posts: 391

PostPosted: Sun 31 Jul, 2016 12:54 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yeah Sam I thought they were little pieces of timber. I recall reading on a discussion here once years ago that this was done at the guard slot sometimes but never read of any such process at the pommel.
I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness, but that which it protects. (Faramir, The Two Towers)
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Alexander Hinman




Location: washington, dc
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PostPosted: Sun 31 Jul, 2016 6:35 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

In the interest of turning this into a learning experience, I notice that the guard is brazed to the blade and tang. Was this ever done historically? I know, for example, that some Scottish and Irish pommels were two pieces of bronze brazed together, so it does not seem altogether impossible.
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Maciej K.
Industry Professional



Location: Poland
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PostPosted: Sun 31 Jul, 2016 11:53 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

definitely fake. everything in this example is screaming "I am fake!".
even basic knowledge about medieval swords will be enough for that conclusion.
Michael said: "There was no two identhical swords" - true. but this one is fake.

Medieval Swords - www.artofswordmaking.com
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Sam Barris




Location: San Diego, California
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PostPosted: Sun 31 Jul, 2016 12:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Paul Watson wrote:
Yeah Sam I thought they were little pieces of timber. I recall reading on a discussion here once years ago that this was done at the guard slot sometimes but never read of any such process at the pommel.

Thanks. I missed that thread. It strikes me as a more mechanically unsound setup for a pommel than a guard, especially here with a perfectly round hole and a perfectly cylindrical tang. There's no way that wouldn't start turning with use. And the wood seems remarkably well-preserved given the age, but since the owner has already floated the possibility that the fuller was added recently by a guy cleaning the sword I guess we don't go too much farther down the implausibility trail to also suggest that the same guy decided to jam some wood into the gap to keep the thing stuck on. We haven't seen the pommel from the other side. I wonder whether it's peened or whether the wood is literally the only thing keeping it on there.

So Michal, I'm curious what you plan to ask for this sword.

Pax,
Sam Barris

"Any nation that draws too great a distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards, and its fighting done by fools." —Thucydides
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JG Elmslie
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Location: Scotland
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PostPosted: Sun 31 Jul, 2016 7:44 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Alexander Hinman wrote:
In the interest of turning this into a learning experience, I notice that the guard is brazed to the blade and tang. Was this ever done historically? I know, for example, that some Scottish and Irish pommels were two pieces of bronze brazed together, so it does not seem altogether impossible.


thing to note there is that the brazed pommels are often 3 pieces of sheet-metal. a rim, and 2 faces, formed together to create a hollow pommel, which is then peined in the same manner as a conventional solid one - like this photo I took in the Scottish National Museum - that, or its two halves which contain a hollow, but are peined in the same way.

I've not seen much evidence at all for brazing done to actually attach the pommel to the tang itself on swords - that seems to have been something they didnt really do much of.



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