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Encyclopedia > Small sword

The small sword or smallsword (also court sword, fr: L'épée de cour or dress sword) is a light one-handed sword designed for thrusting. The smallsword evolved out of the longer and heavier rapier of the late Renaissance. The height of the smallsword's popularity was between mid 17th and late 18th century. It is thought to have appeared in France and spread quickly across the rest of Europe. The comparative lightness of the smallsword and the resulting ease of manipulation led to the development of the sophisticated handwork and the linear footwork of modern fencing, and it can be considered as the immediate predecessor of the modern foil and épée. It has been suggested that War-sword be merged into this article or section. ... Silver damascened rapier guard, between 1580 and 1600. ... The Renaissance (French for rebirth, or Rinascimento in Italian), was a cultural movement in Italy (and in Europe in general) that began in the late Middle Ages, and spanned roughly the 14th through the 17th century. ... (16th century - 17th century - 18th century - more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 17th century was that century which lasted from 1601-1700. ... (17th century - 18th century - 19th century - more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 18th century refers to the century that lasted from 1701 through 1800. ... This article is 150 kilobytes or more in size. ... Fencing advertisement for the 1900 Summer Olympic Games This article is about the sport, which is distinguished from stage fencing and academic fencing (mensur). ... An Italian-grip foil A foil is a type of sword used in fencing. ... An Épée fencer. ...

Typical smallsword of the 1740s.
Typical smallsword of the 1740s.

The smallsword could, in the right hands, be a highly effective duelling weapon, but as with the rapier its function was often reduced to that of male jewelery. Many surviving examples carry elaborate baroque, rococo, or occasionally neoclassical decorations. The fashion for wearing swords with civilian dress rapidly declined at the end of the 18th century, and the use of the smallsword was subsequently restricted to certain ceremonial occasions. Typical smallsword C 1740s. ... Typical smallsword C 1740s. ... A duel is a formalized type of combat. ... Jewellery (spelled jewelry in American English) consists of ornamental devices worn by persons, typically made with gems and precious metals. ... Adoration, by Peter Paul Rubens. ... North side of the Catherine Palace in Tsarskoye Selo - carriage courtyard: all the stucco details sparkled with gold until 1773, when Catherine II had gilding replaced with olive drab paint. ... Neoclassicism (sometimes rendered as Neo-Classicism or Neo-classicism) is the name given to quite distinct movements in the decorative and visual arts, literature, theatre, music, and architecture. ...


As a rule, the blade of a smallsword is comparatively short (about 60-80 centimetres). It usually tapers to a sharp point but may lack a cutting edge. It is typically triangular in cross-section, although some of the early examples still have the rhombic and spindle-shaped cross-sections inherited from older weapons, like the rapier. This triangular cross-section may be hollow ground for additional lightness and stiffness. Many small swords of the period between the 17th and 18th centuries were found with colichemarde blades. A centimetre (American spelling centimeter, symbol cm) is a unit of length that is equal to one hundredth of a metre, the current SI base unit of length. ... For other uses of the word rhombus, see Rhombus (disambiguation) This shape is a rhombus In geometry, a rhombus (or rhomb; plural rhombi) is a quadrilateral in which all of the sides are of equal length, i. ... Silver damascened rapier guard, between 1580 and 1600. ... Colichemarde is a special type of blade used in forging small swords at the end of the 17th - the beginning of the 18th century. ...


The guard is small (typically 3-5 inches in diameter), approximately flat and either round or composed of two oval lobes ("figure of eight"). There is usually a knuckle-bow and either one or two short quillons, used to strengthen the wielder's grip and provide increased points of control. Mid-19th century tool for converting between different standards of the inch An inch is an Imperial unit of length. ... silver damascened rapier guard, between 1580 and 1600. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Sword Forum International | swordforum.com (0 words)
Generally, as sword blades gain in length and lose width, as with rapiers, the COP moves towards the midpoint and the sweet spot becomes shorter.
To permit comparisons, it is customary to measure a sword's balance point (BP) by resting it on say the edge of a ruler, at a point at which it will balance; Or put another way, at a point along its length at which the sum of its moments attributable to weight and length equal zero.
A sword's BP is adjusted by attaching a counterweight to the end of its hilt, commonly known as a pommel.
Switzerland (blade: Germany, Solingen, early 18th c.), late 18th Century / Small-Sword / c. 1790-1800 (493 words)
Though highly reflective of French taste, it was probably fashioned in a Swiss workshop under French influence or by a French craftsman working in Switzerland.
Worn publicly as an emblem of social rank, this sword was likely custom-made for an affluent individual to use on formal or court occasions.So-called because of its short blade, the small-sword emerged as the light and quick weapon of choice for aristocratic civilians during the 1700s.
Such a sword was traditionally suspended at about mid-thigh from the left side of a belt, the hilt exposed through the opening of the gentleman's coat.
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