Page 1 of 9 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 215

Thread: Basket Hilts

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    279

    Basket Hilts

    Hi Guys and Eljay

    I was inspired recently when an old posting of mine on Ethnographical relating to Basket Hilts suddenly came to life and thought I might have another attempt at getting a Basket hilt thread going on Sword Forum. So here goes, I will start with my earliest basket and live in hope that others join in and post some nice pictures for us Basket Heads to drool over.

    BASKET HILT British backsword
    Date Circa 1540 - 1550 (16th-17th Century)
    Nationality English
    Overall Length 87.6 cm (34.5 inches)
    Blade length 81.6 cm (32.1 inches)
    Blade widest point 2.7 cm (1.1 inches)
    Hilt widest point 16 cm (6.3 inches)
    Inside grip length 8.7 cm (3.4 inches)
    Marks, etc. N/A

    Description
    BASKET HILT British backsword. Three segments of the guard (each comprised of three vertical bars) are linked by two small junction plates. The upper tips insert into the large, hollow Spherical pommel. The holes into which they insert have been enlarged to allow restoration of the grip and tang button. The thin single edged blade is contemporary with the hilt, the grip is a replacement.

    General Remarks
    This sword was also used by Scots in the English Civil War. A similar example was excavated on the site of Basing House which was destroyed in 1645 and another recovered from under the Mary Rose in 1545.

    The Baron of Earlshall believes it to be English c.1540-50

    Cheers Cathey and Rex
    Attached Images Attached Images   
    Last edited by Cathey Brimage; 03-28-2015 at 10:51 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    North East USA
    Posts
    3,056
    Blog Entries
    1
    Hi Cathey,

    Here's a neat one. A circa 1880 basket hilt by Gardiner of Argyle Street, Glasgow. This is actually a 'half-basket' hilt, a variation intended for mounted officers.
    Attached Images Attached Images    
    mark@swordforum.com

    ~ Hostem Hastarum Cuspidibus Salutemus ~

    "Those who beat their swords into plowshares usually end up plowing for those who don't."
    Benjamin Franklin

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Kingston area, Ontario Canada
    Posts
    2,900
    Interesting basket hilt Mark, quillion is nicely pronounced. I have a circ. 1885 1857p Scottish field officers sword with same blade profile.
    I find the blade on mine somewhat whippy and would not be stiff enough for mounted use. I am curious to the stiffness of blade on your basket hilted sword seeing it is for mounted use. Also is yours marked to a regiment?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    North East USA
    Posts
    3,056
    Blog Entries
    1
    hey Will!

    ...unfortunately, my eprouvette is out on loan today ( ), but imho, the sword is plenty stiff enough for mounted use. Not near as broad as one might like in a basket-hilt, but still good enough to get the job done. The double fullered blade is etched, but sadly not regimentally.
    mark@swordforum.com

    ~ Hostem Hastarum Cuspidibus Salutemus ~

    "Those who beat their swords into plowshares usually end up plowing for those who don't."
    Benjamin Franklin

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    279

    English Basket Hilt Circa 1610-40

    Nice Half Basket Will, heres my next post to hopefully keep them coming.

    English Basket Hilt
    Date Circa 1610-40
    Maker/Retailer Johannes Stam Circa 1612 Germania
    Overall Length 39 ¾” 111cm
    Blade length 34 1/8” 86.7 cm
    Blade widest point 1 1/8” 2.8 cm
    Hilt widest point 4 ½” 11.6 cm
    Inside grip length 3 ¼” 8.2 cm
    Marks, etc.

    Description
    English basket hilt sword of early form, approx. 102cm overall length with approx. 86cm straight backsword blade. Wire bound fish skin grip, steel guard of early type with the unusual feature of a loop for a sword knot in the Spherical pommel. The single edged blade with a single broad fuller in inlaid in pattern with the running wolf mark, Orb and Cross, Early Anchor mark and what appears to be a cross and circle near the hilt.

    General Remarks
    Anchor Mark looks like that of Johannes Stam Circa 1612 Germania

    References:
    LENKIEWICZ, Zygmunt S. 1000 SWORD MARKS OF EUROPEAN BLADEMAKERS Pp65
    MAZANSKY (C.) BRITISH BASKET-HILTED SWORDS: A TYPOLOGY OF BASKET-TYPE SWORD HILTS. Pp67
    MOWBRAY, Stuart C BRITISH MILITARY SWORDS VOLUME ONE 1600-1660 The English Civil Wars and the Birth of the British Standing Army Pp122

    Cheers Cathey and Rex
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    L'abbaye de Theleme
    Posts
    748
    Errr.... I am not sure this falls under baskethilt.

    I have this thing, that I think it is a Swedish cavalry sword from about 1630s; the quillons are typical. But I never got confirmation of that. It is 114cm long, 93cm of blade, and weights 1425 gr.. The grip is made for a gauntlet and it has a thumb ring (too large for a naked hand). In spite of its size and weight handles nicely. No marks. Wood grip has imprinted missing wire marks.

    Name:  w15yg.jpg
Views: 1125
Size:  120.0 KB
    Name:  DSC00014.jpg
Views: 1131
Size:  97.5 KB
    Name:  DSC00022.jpg
Views: 1130
Size:  95.5 KB
    Name:  DSC00020.jpg
Views: 1049
Size:  96.0 KB
    Name:  DSC00025.jpg
Views: 1059
Size:  97.5 KB
    Name:  DSC00026.jpg
Views: 1170
Size:  96.2 KB
    Last edited by Javier Ramos; 03-30-2015 at 08:54 AM.
    La vida amable, el enemigo hombre fuerte, ordinario el peligro, natural la defensa, la Ciencia para conseguirla infalible, su estudio forçoso, y el exercicio necessario conviene al que huviere de ser Diestro, no ignore la teorica, para que en la practica, el cuerpo, el braço, y los instrumentos obren lo conveniente a su perfeccion. --Don Luis Pacheco de Narvaez.

  7. #7
    Great thread, thanks Cathey! I have a number of basket hilts that I'll try and post separately over the next few weeks.

    Scottish basket hilt, early 18th century, with (probably) original scabbard and basket liner, replacement wooden grip, plain conical pommel, Mazansky type Cxvi shield piecings, wrist guard broken or removed. Overall length 38 inches, very flexible blade 32 inches, 1.75 inches wide at hilt, with three short fullers, each slightly longer central fuller indistinctly marked "Andria Ferara" with three xIIx marks on the shorter fullers above and below.
    Attached Images Attached Images      

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    279

    Beak Nose Basket hilt circa 1600

    Thanks for posting Alan, this thread has been slow to pick up. Very nice Basket, I hope this will encourage other Basket Hilt collectors to share their collections with us.

    I am working through my Basket hilts in this thread in date order more or less so the next one is as follows:

    Beak Nose Basket Hilt Sword
    Nationality Scottish
    Date Circa 1600
    Maker/Retailer Blade possible by Stamm Clemens Soligen?
    Overall Length 38 3/8” 97.4 cm
    Blade length 32 ¾” 83.3 cm
    Blade widest point 2” 5.1 cm
    Hilt widest point 6 ½” 16.7 cm
    Inside grip length 3 ¾” 9.7 cm
    Marks, etc. Two crescent moons back to back

    Description
    The large Iron hilt forged from broad Iron bars and Large circular plates, with deep engraved line borders and circles. Large bun shaped pommel with button top. The grip of fruit wood and cut with spiral fluting, there are some cracks in the wood. Wide blade of 2" and with five narrow fullers of various lengths, halfway down the blade has previously been attributed to Stamm Clemens of Solingen due to the two detailed crescent moon stamps.

    General Remarks
    Blade oOriginally attributed to Clemens Stamm Soligen 1580-1610 by the late US dealer Terence Porter. Could also be Hoffman Jean Matheu Circa 1624 of Germany which date wise seams more likely.

    References:
    CULLODEN, THE SWORDS AND THE SORROWS. An exhibition to commemorate the Jacobite rising of 1745 and the battle of Culloden 1746. Pp44-45
    DUFTY, Arthur Richard EUROPEAN SWORDS AND DAGGERS IN THE TOWER OF LONDON Published Her Majesty's stationary office 1968.13cplate 107
    LENKIEWICZ, Zygmunt S. 1000 SWORD MARKS OF EUROPEAN BLADEMAKERS Pp28, 67
    MAZANSKY (C.) BRITISH BASKET-HILTED SWORDS: A TYPOLOGY OF BASKET-TYPE SWORD HILTS.Pp 58, 70-73
    NEUMANN, George G. SWORDS AND BLADES OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION pp138-139 231.S & 232.S

    Cheers Cathey and Rex
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    North West US
    Posts
    1,075
    I do not own one but love the thread, keep them coming guys and gals. Eric
    The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people." --- Tench Coxe

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    279

    Eglish Basket Hilted Sword

    Date Circa 1615-40
    Nationality British
    Overall Length 108.6 cm 42 ¾”
    Blade length 95.1 cm 37 5/8”
    Blade widest point 2.8 cm 1 1/8”
    Hilt widest point 11.3 cm 4 2/4”
    Inside grip length 8.5 cm 3 3/8”
    Marks, etc. Blade marked to both sides to a German, Solingen Swordsmith, “CLEMENS DINGER”.

    Description
    English Basket Hilted Backsword. Staghorn grip, Ribbon style basket – hilt with faint areas of a floral engraving to the exterior. Recurved Quillions. Single edged broadsword blade with twin fullers to either side, situated adjacent to the spine. Blade marked to both sides to a German, Solingen Swordsmith, “CLEMENS DINGER”.

    Cheers Cathey and Rex
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Santa Barbara, CA
    Posts
    312
    Quote Originally Posted by Cathey Brimage View Post
    Date Circa 1615-40
    Nationality British
    Overall Length 108.6 cm 42 ¾”
    Blade length 95.1 cm 37 5/8”
    Blade widest point 2.8 cm 1 1/8”
    Hilt widest point 11.3 cm 4 2/4”
    Inside grip length 8.5 cm 3 3/8”
    Marks, etc. Blade marked to both sides to a German, Solingen Swordsmith, “CLEMENS DINGER”.

    Description
    English Basket Hilted Backsword. Staghorn grip, Ribbon style basket – hilt with faint areas of a floral engraving to the exterior. Recurved Quillions. Single edged broadsword blade with twin fullers to either side, situated adjacent to the spine. Blade marked to both sides to a German, Solingen Swordsmith, “CLEMENS DINGER”.

    Cheers Cathey and Rex
    Love basket hilts and the thread... often I have been tempted to acquire one, but have not trusted my judgment. They are truly great swords...
    Good to see you back on the forum too!!!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    North East USA
    Posts
    3,056
    Blog Entries
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by Simon R. View Post
    Love basket hilts and the thread... often I have been tempted to acquire one, but have not trusted my judgment. They are truly great swords...
    Good to see you back on the forum too!!!
    ... you're giving yourself good advice, Simon. According to one trusted authority (Earlshall), the percentage of basket-hilt fakes, frauds and forgeries currently circulating around in the marketplace is absolutely staggering.
    mark@swordforum.com

    ~ Hostem Hastarum Cuspidibus Salutemus ~

    "Those who beat their swords into plowshares usually end up plowing for those who don't."
    Benjamin Franklin

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    279
    Hi Mark

    With regard to the number of fakes out there I agree completely. The more modern mass produced copies are reasonably easy to pick, however the deliberately aged more elaborate items not so. There have been a number of forged John Simpson baskets and other Stirling style baskets coming on the market as these are commanding high prices. Some of these copies are over 60 years old so they have often managed to gather some provenance in there relatively short lives as they pass through dealers and collectors.

    I am sure I have passed up a number of authentic items in the past because of that small element of doubt and generally if it looks too good to be true and a bargain to boot I am very nervous.

    Recently a number of superb looking Stirling Baskets turned up at auction in Australia, however as I was unable to attend and view them personally, I did not pursue them with much enthusiasm. The best advice I can give to someone looking to break into this area is read books and never pass up an opportunity to handle an authentic item.

    The reality is everything in the collecting field can be copied and if there is money to be made probably is being copied now. If in doubt get a second opinion and try and deal with Auction houses and dealers that are prepared to guarantee the authenticity of their stock.

    Cheers Cathey and Rex

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    279

    English Basket Hilt circa 1640-1660

    Guys, some of you must have Basket hilts to post. Just to keep things going, here is another one.

    Nationality Scottish/English
    Overall Length 99.2 cm (39.1 inches)
    Blade length 86.7 cm (34.1 inches)
    Blade widest point 3.8 cm (1.5 inches)
    Hilt widest point 10.5 cm (4.1 inches)
    Inside grip length 10 cm (3.9 inches)
    Marks, etc Three Kings Heads

    Description
    Early Basket Hilt with flat bun pommel, wooden grip with large iron bands top and bottom. The Guard is made up of circular iron branches with two square junction plates and forward guards. The terminal of the side guards is crude with lined decoration. The plates have lined decoration at each corner. The branches join in three groups and butt up against the pommel. The blade is wider than the slot in the hilt. The broadsword blade has no fuller and is German bearing three king’s heads indicating Solingen manufacture.

    General Remarks
    Described in correspondence from the Baron of Earlshall as “Date c1640-1660, blade 17th century and contemporary to the basket and made by the Wunderberg blade makers of Solingen.

    Cheers Cathey and Rex
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  15. #15

    English basket hilt c.1740-1760

    This English basket hilt would be called a Type G16 in the typology developed by Cyril Mazansky. The blade is marked ANDREA FERARA on both sides, and also has what appears to be a king's head stamp. West Street Antiques currently has for sale a similar (but in some ways very different) English basket hilt. Here are some measurements I took a long time ago:

    Blade:
    34 ½” long
    1 3/8” wide at the shoulder
    7 ¼” false edge
    Fullers:
    1/8” wide (each)
    Two fullers run the entire length of the blade
    One fuller measures approximately 17 ¼”
    Tang:
    13/16” wide at the shoulder, peened at the pommel
    Hilt:
    6 ¼” long
    Basket:
    4 ½” long
    4 ¼” wide
    3” deep (not including quillon)
    Bars are between 3/16” and ¼” wide and are approximately 1/8” thick
    Reins Ring:
    2 ¾” long
    1 9/16” wide
    Quillon:
    1”
    Pommel:
    1 ¾” long
    1 9/16” wide at base
    1” wide at center
    5/8” wide at terminus
    Grip:
    4 3/16” long
    Weight:
    2 lbs. 7 oz.
    CoP:
    Approximately 23 ½” from hilt
    PoB:
    Approximately 4 ½” from hilt
    Attached Images Attached Images           

  16. #16
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    279
    Hi Johnathan

    no idea your interests extended to Basket hilts. Love this sword with the unusual side bars. I have seen similar come up from time to time but have never been in a positon to aquire one. Very unusual pommel as well. I do hope you have more you can post soon.

    Cheer Cathey and Rex

  17. #17
    Thank you, Cathey! Unfortunately it is my only basket hilt. It is a remnant of my early goals as a young collector (I was 16 when i bought it). Back then I was more interested in British swords of the 18th century and I looked down my nose at anything newer than the Napoleonic period! Even though I don't currently plan to expand my collection of 18th century swords, the ones I own all have a special place in my heart and I won't sell them. I really like Type G16 hilts and I always try so save photos of them as I find them.

    Any word from the Baron on when his multi-volume work will be complete?

    All the best,
    Jonathan

    PS--The pommel of my sword reminds me of soft-serve ice cream.

    Name:  Dairy_Queen_Vanilla_Cone_-_Medium_808327_i0.jpg
Views: 1256
Size:  9.3 KB
    Last edited by J.G. Hopkins; 04-07-2015 at 09:46 PM.

  18. #18
    Ok, time for me to begin posting.

    German, dates sometime in the last half of the 1500s.
    41" de blade with single short fuller inscribed IOHANNES.
    The grip is modern (one of my restorations), but all else, including the ferrules on the grip, is original.
    You'll note that some areas of the sword are very well preserved, while others have pitting. This sword was aquired by an aquaintance of mine from a European collection, and it was received covered in black lacquer. I think that the lacquer was an old arsenal preservative, and where it adhered to the steel, the steel was very well preserved, but where moisture penetrated, pitting resulted. Thus you can see areas that are almost pristine right next to some pitting.
    Attached Images Attached Images    

  19. #19
    Scottish, ca 1680
    32" de blade with short shallow fuller inscribed ELVIEGO SAHAGOM. There is a small circular stamp at the end of the fuller.
    The hilt is typical for the late 1600s, but what is unusual is that the ends of the knucklebows fit into small slots in the pommel. This is a feature seen on some Scots baskets of the early 1600s, and I suppose what you see here is a hiltmaker who liked the old way of fitting the knucklebows to the pommel.
    The grip is old hard leather with some wormholes.
    Attached Images Attached Images   

  20. #20
    Scottish, ca 1680
    38" de blade with single short shallow fuller, with faint traces of an inscription.
    Hilt is interesting because it is constructed of flat ribbons instead of the more normal rounded bars.
    The sword is in almost excavated condition, but I obtained it because of the ribbon construction, and because of the oval panels at the center of the knucklebows (the front knucklebow also has an oval). I think that I've only seen one other basket with the ovals placed like this.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  21. #21
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    279

    Scottish Basket Hilt c1680-1700

    Thanks Eljay, always great to see your swords and now we have basket hilts at the top of the page we need to continue to do this post justice.

    With regard tot he Barons book I know he delayed as he found a couple of late examples to include. I have just popped a letter in the post to him today so I am hoping for an update soon. Sadly he is not overly fond of Emails.

    Here is another basket a bit of a hybrid between the early patterns and the emergence of pieced hearts’.

    Scottish Basket Hilt
    Nationality Scottish
    Date C1680-1700
    Overall Length 38 5/8” 98.1 cm
    Blade length 34 1/8” 96.5 cm
    Blade widest point 1 ½” 3.7 cm
    Hilt widest point 4 3/8” 11.1 cm
    Inside grip length 3 ½” 9 cm
    Marks, etc. Appears to be 16th – 17th Century version of Passau Wolf Mark.

    Description
    Early Scottish Basket Hilt c1680
    Stag horn grip, Low domed pommel, crude single heart shaped piercing to Outer shields and knuckle guards. Remnants of line decoration to outer shields. Crude terminal lobe to side guard’s un-pierced, forward guards but no wrist guard present. Broad sword blade with two short fullers at shoulder and early version of running wolf mark.

    Cheers Cathey and Rex
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  22. #22
    Interesting sword, Cathey, and the hearts do seem to foreshadow what would be coming in the next century for Scots basket decoration.

    And here's some more of my swords.

    English, first half of the 1600s.
    33" straight de blade with narrow fullers stamped "Andria Ferara"
    Basket very similar to the one Cathey posted further up the page. In spite of pitting and wear, there are traces of engraving to the hilt.
    The grip is a restoration.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  23. #23
    English, ca. 1700.
    32" straight de blade, inscribed in the fuller "IESU MARIA"
    Hilt is constructed of narrow rounded bars.
    The grip is original, covered in sharkskin and bound with a copper wire. There is a gilt ferrule at both ends of the grip.
    Mazansky p. 175 show a hilt that is basically a twin to this one.
    Attached Images Attached Images   

  24. #24
    Scottish "Turcael", first half of the 1700s.
    32" curved se blade, stamped in the fullers "Andria Farara".
    Simple basket with no filed decoration to the edges of the panels.
    Original wood grip core recovered by myself with fine rayskin so as to approximate sharkskin. The woolen fringe under the pommel is original (?).
    Attached Images Attached Images   

  25. #25
    Scottish brass baskethilt, first half of the 1700s.
    36" straight se blade with two narrow fullers. The blade is stamped on the left side with "sickle" marks.
    Aside from the very large pommel to counterbalance the blade, the construction is typical for one of these brass hilts.
    The grip is covered in leather which I suspect is modern.
    Attached Images Attached Images   

Page 1 of 9 123 ... LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •