Your name sounds unfamiliar as it rings along the long, marble gallery, bedecked with gilt frames and austere painted eyes. How strange to hear it here, plain and pedestrian alongside ancient titles. A small cough from the footman prompts you to step through the crest-bedecked doors.
There is no end to the finery that greets you – polished plates and chandeliers, jade figurines from lands beyond your dreams. Dukes and generals commingling in their garb of gold and blue, upturned cuffs and sweeping plumes. And the swords! Swinging at their hips, all solid gold pommels and plaited wire grips.
Transfixed you gaze from blade to gilded blade – until your eyes come to rest on a peculiar incarnation: similar in its stately shape, this sword is blackened where others are polished, its long blade slender and more wieldy. You can’t shake the feeling that where other guests wear dress swords, this is a weapon worn with intent.
Suddenly aware that you’re being watched, you raise your eyes slowly to meet the steel grey glare of the sword’s owner.
This stately weapon is certainly one of the more unusual commissions in our books. Based on a ceremonial sword belonging to Charles XII of Sweden, it has the delicate features of a smallsword with the length and weight of a sidesword.
In recreating this courtly weapon for fencing, we needed to disregard the extreme weight of the original weapon, which was most likely a result of the extensive gold detailing in the hilt – and possibly a lack of distal taper in the blade. Taking cues from the breadth and length of the blade and the size of the grip, Chris balanced the sword with a cut-centric spadroon in mind, creating a capable fencing tool despite its atypical hilt.
Similar bespoke rapiers start at £500 plus postage, and increase based on complexity.
The hardened steel furniture is blackened to a matte, antique finish. The pommel is hand-carved into a segmented design, while the plate is engraved on the underside with a geometric snowflake motif. The hardwood grip is wrapped in strands of steel and copper twisted wire, and the blade is engraved with the name “Bronislav” at the request of our client.
Looking for a weapon fit for fantasy kings? Get in touch to discuss your ideas.