Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object

Smallsword, known as a Mourning Sword

ca. 1790
L. 38 in. (96.5 cm); L. of blade 30 3/4 in. (78.1 cm); greatest W. of blade 11/16 in. (1.8 cm); greatest thickness of blade 3/8 in. (0.9 cm); Wt. 15 oz. (425 g)
Credit Line:
Gift of Jean Jacques Reubell, in memory of his mother, Julia C. Coster, and of his wife, Adeline E. Post, both of New York City, 1926
Accession Number:
Not on view
The deeply blued steel hilt is set with faceted steel beads, giving the impression of jewels. Beaded steel smallsword hilts, blued to nearly jet black, were in fashion in England during the Neoclassical period and are thought to have been worn with formal dress at times of mourning.
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