Bastard Swords

Bastard Swords were developed in the mid 1400’s as a form of long-sword with specially shaped grips for one or two hands. These swords typically had longer handles which allowed use by one or both hands. Bastard swords are also known as Hand-and-a-half swords. The sword’s hilt often had side-rings and finger rings to defend the hand, and a more slender, or tapered, narrowly pointed blade. Bastard swords continued to be used by knights and men-at-arms into the 1500’s,and for a time, enjoyed the civilian side-arm role that would later be superseded by the side sword and rapier. The hilts of German bastard swords before the middle of the 16th century were basically cruciform, with long straight or curved quillons, ring guards, and one or two arms of the hilt. In some later types a more developed guard included two knuckle bows connected by a loop, all looking not unlike a basket hilt. From the early 16th century, the hilts of the Swiss bastard swords were provided with knuckle guards as well as with recurved quillons and ring guards. It was also the time when saw a new lasting form of the Swiss bastard sword, which had a slightly curved blade and an asymmetrical pommel often shaped like a bird or animal head. Bastard swords, like many later long-swords, also made use of the technique of “pummeling”, in which their rounded or plum-shaped pommel is partially held in the palm of the second hand. Their method of use also differed by the addition of a “compound-hilt” of side-rings and finger-rings. These were later called finger-rings or annelets, and side-rings or anneus. The addition of these extra bars and guards developed as a result of a new method of gripping which came into use. Improved point-control for thrusting into armor openings was gained by wrapping the index finger around the cross-guard. Gripping in this manner required more protection for the exposed fingers and necessitated the development of the close or compound-hilt. Warriors were also going more and more without heavy gauntlets and these newer hilts offered greater hand protection, particularly against intensifying attacks by thrust. The close-hilt offered superior defense and was used on many bastard-swords, some long-swords and even two-handers. Our Bastard swords can be used for display or for battle re-enactments, each reproduction is created to the specifications of the original. The dimensions and weight are accurate on every piece so you get a medieval weapon that is actually balanced and fun to hold instead of just pretty to look at. Medieval times were sometimes brutal, sometimes romantic, but always a source of intrigue. We invite you to share in the experience of an era past with our collection of Bastard swords. All our Bastard Swords are expertly hand-crafted and authentic replicas! You can display them in your office, home or for Medieval Reenactments.


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