Hand-and-a-Half Sword

European or possibly British

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 373

The name of this type of sword refers to the length of its hilt, which allows it to be wielded with one hand or two. Before being acquired by William H. Riggs, this sword was in the collection of Sir Samuel Rush Meyrick (1783–1848), founder of the modern study of arms and armor. Meyrick purchased the sword from a London dealer in 1818. It was included in a watercolor by the French painter Eugène Delacroix (1797–1863), which he made during a visit to Meyrick’s collection in 1825. The sword was catalogued as possibly English in the early nineteenth century, but its place of origin remains uncertain.

Hand-and-a-Half Sword, Steel, leather, wood, copper alloy, European or possibly British

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