Forged steel blade; partially gilt and russet steel hilt; steel wire, leather bands, wood core
Overall: 103.5 cm (40 3/4 in.); Blade: 86.1 cm (33 7/8 in.); Guard: 8.3 cm (3 1/4 in.)
Weight: 360 g (12.7 oz.)
Gift from the Bascom Little Estate 1974.57
The fashion among gentleman for wearing small-swords with everyday attire began to wane by the end of the 1700s with the exception of the military dress sword.
During the 1700s, the small-sword emerged as a light, quick weapon. Like the rapier it was carried by unarmored civilians, the noblemen of the upper classes. Over time this delicate sword became more an accessory of male attire than a weapon essential to life and death. The sword hilt, which shows even when the blade is sheathed, became the ground for elaborate decoration. These small-swords thus represent the final stage in the evolution of the sword, from the edged weapons of antiquity to the elegantly refined blades of the 1700s and 1800s.
The information about this object, including provenance information, is based on historic information and may not be currently accurate or complete. Research on objects is an ongoing process, but the information about this object may not reflect the most current information available to CMA. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email email@example.com.
To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.
Is something not working on this page? Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Request a digital file from Image Services that is not available through CC0, a detail image, or any image with a color bar. If you have questions about requesting an image, please email email@example.com.