Exceptional Gilded Pappenheimer Rapier, ca. 1630
Symmetrical guard formed of diamond-section bars with large pas d’ane and three up-
turned concentric rings extending from the lower end, the uppermost one joined to the
knuckle bow. The opening inside the smallest ring is covered by a pierced shell-shaped
plate attached with two screws. Vertically recurved quillons and shield-shaped quillon
block. Knuckle bow with large finial unconnected and curved away from the pommel. Grip
with flat and twisted iron wire wrap and finished with grooved ferrules top and bottom.
Faceted ovoid pommel with button. Hilt retaining approximately 90% of its gilded finish.
Straight hexagonal-section 41" blade with three narrow 9" fullers and long flat ricasso
stamped on one side with a clear crowned “S” in a shield, possibly the mark of the famed
Sahagun family of Toledo blade smiths. Very good condition for its age with very light
pitting on the blade. Overall length 47 ½". This style rapier named for Field Marshal
Gottfried Heinrich Graf (count) zu Pappenheim, Imperial cavalry commander of Thirty
Years War fame. A gilded pappenheimer rapier was carried by Swedish King Gustavus II
Adolphus when he was killed at the Battle of Lutzen in 1632 and is preserved in the
Stockholm Royal Armouries. Coincidentally, Field Marshal von Pappenheim was also
killed in this battle.
17th Century, Stuart period