Category Archives: Art

Louis XIV French Classic Smallsword

This early French smallsword (ca. 1655 C.E.) has few parallels.  Its style reflects early French Classicism from the reign of Louis XIV, and was likely made in Paris.  Its hilt features ornate foliage and figure motifs executed in gold inlay, … Continue reading

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Plate from Liancour, 1686, pg 25

Examine Liancour’s 1685 manuscript by downloading a pdf (in French) on our Study Page.

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McArthur’s 1780 Manuscript Transcribed

Jamson and Crawley have teamed up to transcribe and digitally present a legible edition to McArthur’s 1780 smallsword manual.  Crawley states, “McArthur is the most accessible smallsword treatise for starting out yet the least available” so he and Jamson have … Continue reading

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Rococo smallsword with foliate and spiral motifs, ca. 1755

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Angelo’s Plates I-XV from Escrime in the Encyclopédie, 1765

Domenico Angelo rocked the fencing world.  He was an Italian trained in France, appointed as Royal Fencing Instructor by George II where trained the future King, George III, in escrime.  In 1763, working with artist Gwyn Delin, he published L’Ecole … Continue reading

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Hanns Osterle, Bladesmith, Nuremberg, 1569

Although rapiers ruled the day and transitional smallswords would emerge a century later, this image of Hanns Osterle, a Nuremberg bladesmith at work in 1569, offers a priceless glimpse into history. Osterle sits in front of his anvil and strikes … Continue reading

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Evolution of Straight Form Swords

The fast and agile smallsword, also known as  the court sword, is the culmination of a long and rich history. To view the smallsword’s development in context, explore our timeline.

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William H. Harrison’s Smallsword

William Henry Harrison, the 9th President of the United States, served only 31 days before dying of pneumonia in 1841.  Harrison’s portrait, painted by Rembrandt Peale, originally depicted Harrison in civilian clothes (painted after 1800).  However, after Harrison’s success in … Continue reading

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The Duke of Wellington on the Supremacy of the Smallsword

Field Marshal Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, is regarded as one of the great military leaders of the 19th Century.  Having served in Belgium and India, he rose to the rank of Major-General and was then appointed Field Marshal … Continue reading

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Blackwell’s Disarm in Tierce

Study everything Blackwell had to say in his 1702 publication by following the link below at the SmallswordProject.com Blackwell, H. (1702). The English fencing-master. London: Printed by J. Downing in Bartholomew-Close, for the author. [English]

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