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A fine French steel hilted small sword dating to the middle of the 18th century. The sword is a nicely balanced example mounted with a double shell guard hilt and a gilt etched blade.
Given the unforgiving nature of steel the shell guards are skillfully pierced and engraved with delicate floral patterns on the inner and outer surfaces. Each shell is centred with a vacant roundel. This feature of a roundel is repeated each side of the pommel, each side of the rear quillon, ricasso and in the middle area of the knucklebow.
The grip consists of a wooden baluster-shaped rectangular core spirally wrapped with bands of copper strip separated by roped copper wire and is mounted with woven “Turk’s Heads” top and bottom.
The tapering, slender, hollow ground, triangular section blade is engraved with a panel each side at the forte which contains stands of arms and scrolled designs covered with gilt. A further scrolled embellishment is applied further along the blade. The blade is 31.75 inches (80.75 cm) long and the overall length of the sword is just over 38.5 inches (97.5 cm). The condition of the sword is in fine and original form.