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Thread: Antique/Miltary Sword Bibliography

  1. #1
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    Lightbulb Antique/Miltary Sword Bibliography

    Hello to everyone

    If you wanted to construct a bibliography for antique/military swords what would you recommend? What would you *not* recommend? What areas would you include (e.g. construction technique, history, swordsmanship, geographic location, time period)?

    I have dabbled over the last couple of years with of books I have or would like to have. There are both books on swords and fencing. It's probably pretty amateurish to what all of you own.

    After reviewing it I thought I'd like to hear what all of you have and what you like about that particular book. Please give me your opinions. I am always curious, working in a library, what people have in their own libraries.

    Thank you
    Maria

  2. #2
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    Hi Maria,

    I think you are right to include books on type identification in addition to esoteric works that will cover such things as fighting styles, techniques and manufacturing processes. I'll just run down a few of the titles that populate my bookshelf...

    Cut & Thrust Weapons
    by Wagner

    Swords and Blades of the American Revolution
    by Neumann

    American Swords & Sword Makers
    by Bezdek

    Swords of the British Army
    by Robeson

    Ciecia Prawdziwa Szabla (True Cut of the Saber)
    by Zablocki

    A New System of Sword Exercise For Infantry
    by Burton

    Rules & Regulations for Sword Exercise for The Cavalry
    War Office (reprint)

    Fighting Iron, A Metals Handbook for Arms Collectors
    by Gogan

    Guide to Environmental Protection of Collections
    by Appelbaum

    So, from this short list of titles you can see that I approach swords from the perspective of what they are, how they were used, how they were made and how to properly care for them.

    As for books I would *not* want to include on this list, I would avoid any of the large format coffee table books on swords that you might find at Barnes & Noble type stores. You would be better off spending your money on more content and less fluff.

    Mark

  3. #3
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    Antique/Military Sword Bibliography

    Originally posted by Mark McMorrow
    Hi Maria,

    I think you are right to include books on type identification in addition to esoteric works that will cover such things as fighting styles, techniques and manufacturing processes. I'll just run down a few of the titles that populate my bookshelf...

    Cut & Thrust Weapons
    by Wagner

    Swords and Blades of the American Revolution
    by Neumann

    American Swords & Sword Makers
    by Bezdek

    Swords of the British Army
    by Robeson

    Ciecia Prawdziwa Szabla (True Cut of the Saber)
    by Zablocki

    A New System of Sword Exercise For Infantry
    by Burton

    Mark

    I have actually handled Burton's own copy of this book. The place I work at (The Huntington Library) has Burton's Trieste library. I have poked around a few of his other books on swords and fencing. (...)

    Rules & Regulations for Sword Exercise for The Cavalry
    War Office (reprint)

    Fighting Iron, A Metals Handbook for Arms Collectors
    by Gogan

    Guide to Environmental Protection of Collections
    by Appelbaum

    So, from this short list of titles you can see that I approach swords from the perspective of what they are, how they were used, how they were made and how to properly care for them.

    As for books I would *not* want to include on this list, I would avoid any of the large format coffee table books on swords that you might find at Barnes & Noble type stores. You would be better off spending your money on more content and less fluff. Mark
    Thank you Mark all of these are ones I do not own. Good suggetions!


    Maria
    Maria

  4. #4
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    Hi Maria,

    My pleasure. Be advised that I am partial to sabers , so all of the reference texts I noted (with the exception of Wagner's work) are more or less specific to that type of sword.

    Mark

  5. #5
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    Neumann also covers a wide range of swords, including a nice section on cutlasses. And in spite of the "Revolution" in the title, he has examples going back to c1600.

    I don't have it, but knowing your interest in things maritime and piratical, you might be interested in Gilkerson"s Boarders Away. There are different editions--you might want to shop around.
    Sikandur~~Aim Small, Miss Small

  6. #6
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    More books

    I'd add to this wish list :

    The Rapier & Small-Sword : 1460-1820
    by A.V. Norman
    (a must for this kind of swords)

    European Weapons and Armour : From the Renaissance to the Industrial Revolution
    by Ewart Oakeshott

    (specially strong at military swords of 16-17th centuries. Good section on rapiers and smallswords, too)

    Hope you'll enjoy your adquisitions/findings
    SI, SI
    NO, NON

  7. #7
    Concerning Naval swords could I add to the above lists:

    1. Swords for Sea Service - Annis and May 1970 2 Vols
    This really is the vade mecum but expect to pay around £200 for a second hand copy. most of the other books repeat their findings or preceeded this book. Covers all navies but concentrates on RN , lists cutlers, looks at the quandary around the 1825 supposed pattern, and sections on Nelsons swords, Patriotic fund swords, Collingwood's swords

    2. Naval Swords and Firearms - May and Kennard

    3. Naval Swords - Annis
    Royal Navy and US swords and cutlasses. Late Georgian period only

    4. Boarders Away - Gilkerson
    Very good illustrations with excellent additional and original work on the boarding axe and pike. Mainly Royal Navy and US around 1812. Companion volume on naval firearms is available

    5. Naval small arms - Verity
    National Maritime Museum pamphlet. RN only

    6. The Naval Officer's Sword - Bosenquet
    The original study. Mostly a record of the holdings of the NMM. RN only.

    If you collect American Naval swords there's one by Rankin, and for up to date Royal Navy, Coastguard, Fencibles, Customs, Revenue etc the best source is the Journal of the Arms and Armour Society also the occasional article in the Mariners Mirror.

    Aylward's The House of Angelo will give you some background info on early 18th Century cutlass training as will Ambergers "The Secret History of the Sword" and Lavery's "Nelson's Navy"

    David

  8. #8
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    Antique/ Military Sword Bibliography

    Thank all of you for your suggestions. You've given me some great titles to search for.

    I have been trying to find Borders Away v.1 for sometime with no luck. Then again it took me 2 years to find the 3rd edition of Schools & Masters of Fence.


    I'll keep my eyes peeled as the antiquarian book catalogs etc. come in. I'll scout bibliofind.com as well.

    If any of you think of anymore let me know!
    Maria

  9. #9
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    Boarders Away is currently in print (I think).

    The Amazon site says the have 1 copy in stock, are expecting more soon.
    Sikandur~~Aim Small, Miss Small

  10. #10

    Re: Antique/ Military Sword Bibliography

    [QUOTE]Originally posted by Maria Blumberg
    [If any of you think of anymore let me know! ]

    Well you did ask ! below are the books I currently have on my shelf, The collection is still especially weak in the areas of French and American Swords and there are books by Valentine, Blair, Peterson and Mollo among others that I need to get hold of.

    The three best sources I find are Ken Trotman, a bookfinding company called HP Bookfinders and Wallis and Wallis auction house - they usually have 1 or 2 out of print titles each month.

    David

    - An Historical Guide to Arms and Armour .... S Bull
    - Arms and Armour .... AVB Norman
    - The Rapier and the Smallsword 1460 to 1820 .... AVB Norman
    - Smallsword and Military Sword .... AVB Norman
    - London silver hilted swords .... L Southwick
    - Arms and Armour .... F Wilkinson
    - Edged Weapons .... F Wilkinson
    - Swords and Daggers .... F Wilkinson
    - Swords and Daggers - a price guide .... F Wilkinson
    - Collecting Military Antiques .... F Wilkinson
    - European Weapons and Armour .... E Oakeshott
    - Records of the Medieval Sword .... E Oakeshott
    - The Sword in the Age of Chivalry .... E Oakeshott
    - Archaeology of Weapons ..... E Oakeshott
    - European Swords and Daggers in the Tower of London .... Dufty
    - Swods and Hilt Weapons .... Coe
    - Swords for Sea Service .... Annis and May
    - Swords of the British Army .... Robson
    - Boarders Away vol 1 .... Gilkerson
    - Cut and Thrust Weapons .... Wagner
    - Swords and Daggers .... Wagner
    - Swords and lades of the American Revolution .... Neumann
    - Hunting Weapons .... Blackmore
    - The Celtic Sword .... Pleiner
    - A Handbook of Court and Hunting Swords .... Carrington-Pierce
    - Sword Lance and Bayonet .... ffoulkes and Hopkinson
    - British Military Swords .... Wilkinson - Latham
    - Edged Weapons .... F Stephens
    - Blades of Glory - Swords of the Scottish Infantry .... S Wood
    - Arms and Armour of the English Civil War .... Blackmore
    - British Service Sword and Lance Patterns .... Skellerton
    - Introduction to European Swords .... A North
    - An Encyclopaedia of European Historical Weapons .... Dolnek and Durdik
    - The Secret History of the Sword .... Amberger
    - The Duel .... Baldrick
    - The Lyle Arms and Armour Review 76, 78, 79, 80, 81, 94
    - Collectors Guide to Militaria .... Johnson
    - Sword Collecting for Amateurs .... Henderson
    - Ancient Armour and Weapons .... J Hewitt
    - The Smallsword in England .... J Aylward
    - The English Master of Arms .... J Aylward
    - The House of Angelo .... J Aylward
    - Swords in Colour .... Wilkinson - Latham
    - The Book of the Sword .... R Burton
    - European Edged Weapons .... T Wise
    - The Naval Officer's Sword .... Bosenquet
    - Collecting Arms and Armour .... S Ellacott
    - Naval Swords .... P Annis
    - Antique Weapons .... R Akehurst
    - Regulation Military Swords .... Wilkinson - Latham
    - European Swords .... S Bull
    - Scottish swords from the Battlefield at Culloden .... Lord Archibald Campbell
    - Three Presentation Swords n the Victoria and Albert Museum .... C Blair
    - Swords and Daggers .... Hayward
    - Arms and armour in Tudor and Stuart London .... Holmes
    - Naval swords and Firearms .... May and Kennard
    - Naval Weapons .... Liza Verity
    - Arms and Armour of the Pilgrims .... H Peterson

  11. #11
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    Re: Re: Antique/ Military Sword Bibliography

    [QUOTE]Originally posted by David Critchley
    [B][QUOTE]Originally posted by Maria Blumberg
    [If any of you think of anymore let me know! ]

    Well you did ask ! below are the books I currently have on my shelf, The collection is still especially weak in the areas of French and American Swords and there are books by Valentine, Blair, Peterson and Mollo among others that I need to get hold of.

    The three best sources I find are Ken Trotman, a bookfinding company called HP Bookfinders and Wallis and Wallis auction house - they usually have 1 or 2 out of print titles each month.

    David

    David

    A great list of books! Good to see the bibliophiles come out! I don't mind a bit. After all like you said I did ask.

    (...)
    - An Historical Guide to Arms and Armour .... S Bull
    - European Weapons and Armour .... E Oakeshott
    - Records of the Medieval Sword .... E Oakeshott
    - The Sword in the Age of Chivalry .... E Oakeshott
    - Archaeology of Weapons ..... E Oakeshott

    I see Oakeshott is more prolific author than I thought! There are a couple of his books here in the Library and I have read them. I like his writing style and the detail with which he writes.

    (...)
    - Boarders Away vol 1 .... Gilkerson

    Depending how much it costs to fix my washing machine I am buying this one next.(...)

    -
    - The Celtic Sword .... Pleiner

    I just bought this book at the California International Antiquarian Book Fair. Haven’t started it yet. Books on fencing and swords were scarce this year.
    -
    - The Secret History of the Sword .... Amberger

    I started reading this about a year ago. I put down and it disappeared. But ever since you guys kept mentiong it it has magically turned up! So I've started reading it again. It's good but IMO this book needs and index. Also it tends to jump around a bit.

    If I ever need to find a missing book I'll just have you guys mention it. (...) ;-)
    - - The House of Angelo .... J Aylward

    Found this one in the Library and have charged it out. (...)
    -
    - The Book of the Sword .... R BurtonQUOTE]

    I have a paperback of this one at home and have seen Burton's own copy of it.


    Thanks
    Maria

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