The Cleveland Museum of Art

Collection Online as of March 2, 2024

Small Sword

Small Sword

c. 1780

Did You Know?

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.

Description

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.
  • ?-1974
    The Bascom Little Estate, Cleveland, OH, gifted to the Cleveland Museum of Art
    1974-
    The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH
  • Lee, Sherman E. "The Year in Review for 1974." The Bulletin of the Cleveland Museum of Art 62, no. 3 (1975). p. 98, cat. no. 42 www.jstor.org
    Fliegel, Stephen N. Arms and Armor: The Cleveland Museum of Art. [Cleveland, Ohio]: The Museum, 1998. pp. 121, 172; cat. no. 199
    Fliegel, Stephen N. Arms & Armor: The Cleveland Museum of Art. [Cleveland, Ohio]: Cleveland Museum of Art, 2007. cat. no. 200, p. 192.
  • Year in Review: 1974. The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH (organizer) (March 11-April 6, 1975).
    Armor Court Reinstallation. The Cleveland Museum of Art (organizer).
  • {{cite web|title=Small Sword|url=false|author=|year=c. 1780|access-date=02 March 2024|publisher=Cleveland Museum of Art}}

Source URL:

https://www.clevelandart.org/art/1974.57