Aubrey Plaza, I need you in my life being creepy and weird and intimidatingly pretty.
- Dated: circa 1670
- Place of Origin: Amsterdam, Netherlands
- Artist/Maker: Joannes Kalkoen
- Medium: steel and enamelled gold
- Measurements: overall length: 68.8 cm, blade length: 15 cm, hilt length: 89 cm. Width: 9.3 cm. Depth: 6.7 cm
- Inscriptions: inscribed ‘Francisco (Ru)iz en Toleto’
This is an early example of a small sword. The hilt bears the mark of a goldsmith and is elaborately decorated with enamel and gold wire. Later blades were often mass-produced but this one has been cut down from a prized Toledo rapier blade of around 1620.
From around 1640, light swords with short, flexible, pointed blades appeared in response to new fencing techniques that emphasised thrusting at speed. They were worn increasingly with civilian clothes as ‘small swords’, offering a means of self-defence but largely denoting status for the well-dressed gentleman.
Small swords were items of male jewellery. By the 1750s, their elaborate gold and silver hilts, mounted with precious stones and fine enamelling, were the products of the goldsmith and jeweller rather than the swordsmith. They made fitting rewards for distinguished military and naval service. With their blades tucked away inside scabbards, it was their ostentatious and expensive hilts that carried their thrust.
Source: Copyright © 2013 V&A Images
This was an actual army item. My “Thanksgiving” co-writer Jeff Rendell’s father Ken Rendell has a WWII museum in Mass. and had one of these. It’s a one-shot glove-gun. I believe only about 200 of them were made. Jeff found it at his father’s museum and showed it to Quentin who loved it and wrote this scene into the script.
the only Christmas post that matters