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A Scottish basket hilted back sword dating to the second quarter of the 18th century.
The sword is of well balanced and robust construction. The fully formed basket guard is manufactured with sturdy square section structural bars. The front panels and side guard plates are pierced with hearts, circles and engraved with angular border line decoration, and cut with fretted edges consisting of squares and merlons. Underneath, the pads created at the junctures of the rear guard bars and the rear quillon are filed with cross marks.
The pommel is dome shaped with three sets of triple lines radiating from the tang-end on top, the central grooves being wider than those on the flanks in each case. The three upper arms of the guard are securely tucked into a groove cut around the lower half of the pommel. The sword hilt is tight and secure.
Of tapering back sword form the blade has a short ricasso. The shoulders sit in a groove cut into the underneath of the cross guard bar. A single broad fuller extends for most of the blade length and tapers in proportion with the blade. The blade is double edged towards the tip. The baluster shaped plain grip is of wood, now attractively patinated with a rich darkened sheen and mounted with iron ferrules top and bottom with the remains of a leather liner at the base and fringe beneath the pommel still visible.
In general, the sword is nice example of its time. The blade is 34 inches (86.5 cm) and overall the sword is 40 inches long (101.5 cm).
Provenance: The collection of the late Baron of Earlshall