Sharing Shakespeare's Story
Swept Hilt Rapier
From the 1540s to the time of Shakespeare’s death, the rapier was the epitome of sophistication – elaborately decorated, easily slung from the belt, quickly drawn and perfectly designed for duelling. In the narrow streets of many Renaissance cities, a short rapier was preferable to the long-sword.
This spectacular swept-hilt blade, has a cupped or shell-guard and this together with the Moorish decorative scheme, encrusted with silver, suggest that this was almost certainly made in one of the great Spanish workshops that were celebrated all over Europe. The style and construction suggest a date of about 1600, but unfortunately, the makers’ name is illegible.