Parrying Dagger

Date: ca. 1550–75

Culture: Italian

Medium: Steel, gold, brass, wood

Dimensions: L. 15 7/8 in. (40.3 cm); L. of blade 11 in. (27.9 cm); W. 5 in. (12.7 cm); W. of blade 1 1/16 in. (2.7 cm); thickness of blade 3/8 in. (1 cm); Wt. 15 oz. (425.2 g)

Classification: Daggers

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: 26.145.94


Designed to be used together with a rapier, this dagger is fitted with a side ring, recurved quillons, and a depression at the base of one side of the blade to accommodate the thumb and facilitate a firmer grip. The waves in the blade may be intended to act like "speed bumps" in breaking the impact of a blow from an opponent's blade. The piercing of the fullers (grooves) is a decorative motif.