Category Archive 'Arms and Armor'
25 Jul 2020
Born for the Saber / Zrodzeni do Szabli from Stow. Polska Sztuka KrzyÅ¼owa on Vimeo.
Former Polish Nobility Association [ZSP] Chairman Marcin Wiszowaty forwarded this video trailer today. Great stuff.
Set in Poland during the first half of XVII century, the epic documentary-drama “Born for the saber” tells the story of young knight Blazej Wronowski. Jan Jerlicz, a veteran of the Muscovite wars who returns to his fatherland upon Maciej Wronowski’s – his brother’s in arms request to begin training his son, Blazej. “Born for the saber” is a feature story about honor, courage and war, seen through the eyes of a young noble and knight growing up in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. Documentary part of the movie is a cinematic journey through history and art of the mystique of high-end crafting of the polish saber, which to date is considered to be one of the best melee weapons on the globe. Word class experts demonstrate the art of saber fighting and forging this extraordinary weapon.
I doubt that an English-subtitled version is available yet. Yet.
04 Apr 2020
Chainmail Shirt from the Ottoman Empire captured during the Siege of Vienna in 1683 on display at the Heeresgeschichtliches Museum in Vienna
Photographs taken by barbucomedie 2016.
26 Mar 2020
26″ (66cm) Class “A” (Yamato-Class) Main Armament Turret Face (Port) Plate.
This section of armor plate was meant for use on an 18″ Main Gun Turret on a Yamato class battleship and was found at the Kure Naval Base in Japan after the end of WWII then brought back to the US for testing.
This plate section was originally intended for IJN SHINANO, the third Japanese YAMATO-Class super-battleship, which was converted into an aircraft carrier instead, and sunk on its way to final fitting out yard by a U.S. submarine.
The damage is the result of the impact of a 16″ US armor piercing naval shell during ballistic testing 16 October 1946 at the Naval Proving Ground in Dahlgreen, VA.
This plate is now on display at the U.S. Navy Memorial Museum at the Washington Navy Yard, Washington, DC, just in front of the old Gun Factory building.
19 Mar 2020
This 5,000-year-old weapon, made of an alloy of arsenic and copper, may be among the world’s oldest swords.
Housed at a monastery on the Venetian island of San Lazzaro degli Armeni, the blade boasted a distinctive shape that reminded the young archaeologist of some of the oldest swords known to humankind, which date back to around 3,000 B.C. and were recovered from sites in western Asia. To confirm her suspicions, Dallâ€™Armellina and her colleagues spent the next two years tracing the artifactâ€™s origins back in time through a series of monastic archives.
After much digging, the team realized that the sword was discovered at Kavak, a settlement near the ancient Greek colony of Trebizond in whatâ€™s now eastern Turkey, some 150 years ago. Shortly after, it fell into the hands of Armenian art collector Yervant Khorasandjian, who then gifted it to a monk named Ghevont Alishan. Upon Alishanâ€™s death in 1901, the monastery acquired his belongingsâ€”including the sword, which they mistook for a recent construction.
A chemical analysis of the sword solidified its ancient roots. Fashioned from a combination of copper and arsenicâ€”one of the earliest forms of bronzeâ€”the weapon almost certainly predates the late third millennium B.C., when humans first transitioned to blending bronze using tin. The bladeâ€™s sculpting resembles that of a pair of twin swords found at Arslantepe, another archaeological site thatâ€™s been dated to about the third or fourth millennium B.C.
HT: Karen L. Myers.
07 Dec 2019
9.4″ mortar shaped like a sitting tiger. India, 1770-1799
23 Nov 2019
Auctions Imperial LLC, November 30, 2019, 9:00 AM PST
Cheyenne, WY, Lot 250: A FINE GREEK BLUNDERBUSS OF LORD BYRON
Est: $7,000 – $8,000
Opening Bid: $3,500
An exceptional example of a â€œtromboniâ€ made in Epiros, covered entirely in superbly embossed and engraved silver displaying naturalistic flowering vinework. The brass buttplate and triggerguard engraved en suite. The fine matched flintlock mechanism and barrel with flared muzzle elegantly chiseled in relief with vinework and a stand of arms highlighted with gold. Set on the left side of the stock with a silver plaque with foliate border engraved, GGB for George Gordon Byron. From the Samuel Gridley Howe Collection. Early 19th century. Very minor wear.
George Gordon Byron, Sixth Lord Byron, was Englandâ€™s greatest Romantic Era poet. He led an adventurous, often dangerous, existence and at age 35 journeyed to Greece to join the revolution and fight the Ottomans. Given command over a brigade of Suliots, he was preparing an attack on the Ottoman stronghold of Lepanto, but died in Missolonghi on April 19, 1824. Byronâ€™s passing was mourned throughout the world. He became a national hero to the Greeks and his renown as a poet grew in England, Europe and America.
Samuel Gridley Howe M.D. (1801-1876,) noted American abolitionist, was so inspired by Lord Byronâ€™s cause, that he sailed for Greece in 1824 with the intention of fighting by Byronâ€™s side. Howe arrived just weeks after Byron succumbed to fever; he nonetheless fought for six years against the Ottomans at Missolonghi, Crete, and other locations, and assisted Byronâ€™s close friend and protÃ©gÃ©, Alexandros Mavrokordatos, among other Greek notables. Howe acquired Byronâ€™s helmet, sword and a number of other military effects before returning to the U.S. in 1830; the helmet was repatriated to Greece in 1926, donated to the Ethnographic Museum, Athens (now the National Historical Museum) by Howeâ€™s daughter, Maud Howe Elliot, which memorialized her fatherâ€™s service to Greece as well. Howeâ€™s eldest daughter, Laura Elizabeth Richards, celebrated American author, presented the blunderbuss to her son, Henry Howe Richards, at the beginning of the 20th century.
Late 18th-early 19th century. Minor wear. Overall length 51.4cm. Condition II
Samuel Gridley Howe, 1801-1876
The images of a portrait of Samuel Gridley Howe as a Greek freedom fighter, painted by John Elliot c. 1830, now housed at Brown University.
27 Oct 2019
Blade Magazine has a feature illustrating 15 Bob Loveless knife designs that you and I will never own.
Loveless was, without doubt, the most brilliant and original custom knife maker of the last century. A decade or two ago, just about everybody making custom knives was doing copies of Bob Loveless’s Drop Point Hunter.
Success, however, went to Loveless’s head, to put it mildly. He hired an employee, who then actually made all the knives, and became an arrogant asshole. He did not even do a catalog. He sold you photos of his knives at so much a photo. He ran a three-to-five-year waiting list. And he gleefully charged (back in the 1980s) $100 an inch, plus an extra $100 for that rather vulgar naked lady stamping and that was $100 for each side of her.
I didn’t like his nude stamping and I did not like his “I can treat customers like dirt” attitude, so I did not even put in an order. And just as well. Goofy air-headed Loveless collectors have bid all his knives so far into the stratosphere that you’d feel crazy using one.
They are nice designs, but, alas! priced out of the world you and I live in.
The Loveless book is also back in print at $45 here.
14 Oct 2019
Peterson Type H, Wheeler Type II Viking Sword 9th Century.
[P]ieces of some 100 Viking swords and spearheads dating to the middle of the tenth century A.D. were found in two caches placed about 260 feet apart along a remote Viking trade route near Estoniaâ€™s northwestern coast. Archaeologist Mauri Kiudsoo of Tallinn University said the bits of broken weapons may have been cenotaphs, or items left as a monument to warriors who had died and were buried somewhere else. The surviving sword parts provide enough information, however, to know the weapons included H-shaped double-edged swords. Eight nearly intact type H swords and fragments of 100 more have been found in Estonia alone.
The fragments were found in two closely located sites in a coastal area of north Estonia, in the territory of the ancient Estonian county of Ravala, late last autumn.
The finds consisted of dozens of items, mostly fragments of swords and a few spearheads.
Mauri Kiudsoo, archaeologist and keeper of the archaeological research collection of Tallinn University, told BNS the two sites were located just 80 meters apart. The swords date from the middle of the 10th century and are probably cenotaphs, grave markers dedicated to people buried elsewhere.
The reason why the swords were not found intact, Kiudsoo said, is due to the burial customs of the time. It is characteristic of finds in Estonia from the period that weapons were put into the graves broken or rendered unusable.
While the Ravala fragments constitute the biggest find of Viking-era weapons in Estonia, more important according to Kiudsoo, is the fact that the grips of the swords allow us to determine which type of swords they are. They have been identified as H-shaped double-edged swords. This type of sword was the most common type in the Viking era and over 700 have been found in northern Europe.
Kiudsoo said that by 1991, eight more or less intact type H swords and about 20 fragments had been discovered in Estonia but the number has risen to about 100. The overwhelming majority of the Estonian finds have come to light on the country’s north coast, which lies by the most important remote trade route of the Viking era.
Sword Pommel, XI-XIII century from LÃ¤Ã¤nemaa, Estonia.
30 Sep 2019
Captain Price discusses.
Or try this link.
21 Nov 2018
A tight helmet with grotesque face (masked visor), Germany or Italy, early 16th century and later. Height: 9.44″/24 cm. Typical modified helmet for the Gioco del Ponte. Provenance: Collection of the Royal Dynasty of Hanover, Marienburg, auctioned at Sotheby’s, October 2005
08 Nov 2018
Corinthian-style helmet from the battle of Marathon (490 B.C.) found with warrior’s skull inside. Note marks of helmet on the skull.
Museum of Artifacts:
On the morning of September 17, 490 BC, some 10,000 Greeks stood assembled on the plain of Marathon, preparing to fight to the last man. Behind them lay everything they held dear: their city, their homes, their families. In front of the outnumbered Greeks stood the assembled forces of the Persian empire, a seemingly invincible army with revenge, pillage and plunder on its mind. The two sides faced each another directly, waiting for the fight to start. The Athenians stalled for days, anticipating reinforcements promised by Sparta. But they knew they could not wait for long. The Persians, expecting as easy a victory as they had won against enemies so many times before, were in no hurry.
The Greeks, knowing the time for battle had come, began to move forward. Ostensibly, they advanced with focus and purpose, but beneath this firm veneer, as they looked on a vastly larger enemy â€” at least twice their number â€” many must have been fearful of what was to come. The Persian archers sat with their bows drawn, ready to loose a barrage of arrows that would send fear and confusion through the Greek ranks .Eventually, though, the infantry on both sides engaged in battle. Moving towards each other and perhaps with the Greeks running the final 400 metres whilst undoubtedly under fire from the Persian archers, the two armies clashed.
Few hours later the bloody battle ended. Herodotus records that 6,400 Persian bodies were counted on the battlefield, and it is unknown how many more perished in the swamps. The Athenians lost 192 men and the Plataeans 11.
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