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English Mourning Sword, Smallsword, 18th C
Steel hilt with asymmetrical shell guard, pas d’ane, reverse scroll quillon, and knuckle bow joined to the plain spherical pommel with button. Edge of the reverse lobe of the shell turned up, perhaps intentionally to keep it from being a discomfort to the wearer. Black cord wrap (loose, with losses) over black painted wood grip. The entire hilt is painted black, with areas chipped and rust patina showing through. Hollow ground triangular section 30 3/8" blade with the upper quarter engraved with floral decoration, intertwined knot decor, sun face, and a Latin motto (see photos); shows lamination, age staining and areas of light pitting. Overall length 36 3/4". Provenance: Hooten Pagnell Hall, South Yorkshire. Dating back to the 13th Century, Hooten Pagnell Hall has been in the family of the Lord Mayor of London, Sir Patience Warde, since the 17th Century. Much of the contents of the hall has remained virtually untouched for centuries.
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