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Does anyone have any pictures of bone elements of first century AD sword handles. I have numerous pictures of bone grips but I have only six of bone guards and only one of a pommel. The five guards I have drawings of (two from Rheingoenheim and three from Vindonissa are all of the type where the the bone lies horizontally and has a 'V' design carved into it. These are described in the Vindonissa catalogue as cavalry sword guards. Is there evidence to support this or is it merely an assumption based on sculptures of cavalry with trilobate sword pommels?
I also have a photograph of the complete bone sword handle which I believe is in Dorchester museum, where the bone lies vertically in both the guard and pommel. In this example the ends of the bone sections have been covered with caps also made from bone. There are also three bone pieces from Vindonissa which seem to be listed as guards but seem much too thin and I suspect they may be caps of the sort used on the Dorchester example. My German is not sufficiently good to read the full description.
I have seen reconstructions of bone handles with the bones in both the guard and the pommel laid horizontally. What are these based on? Does anyone have pictures (or any other information) that I do not have?

Crispvs
Hi Crispus,

Quote:There are also three bone pieces from Vindonissa which seem to be listed as guards but seem much to thin and I suspect they may be caps of the sort used on the Dorchester example. My German is not sufficiently good to read the full description.

I think I have the relevant publication at home, is it Deschler/Erb? If you confirm and want me to I can look it up later and at least give you a complete translation of the description ...
Thanks Martin,

Yes, the thin pieces, two of which are recessed for sword blades, are shown in C. Unz and E. Dreschler-Erb, 'Katalog der Militaria aus Vindonissa', Brugg, 1997.

Crispvs
Hi Crispus,

those would be numbers 22-24 on Tafel 2, right? Bad thing is that I found I have only a copy of Part B (Katalog) of the book, descriptions would be in part A I guess, judging from others of their publications, right? Still, if you could somehow send me the text of the descriptions I will be happy to translate them for you (you can email me at ummos[at]t-online[dot]de). (sorry I can't help right away ...)
Crispvs

is it possible to have pikkys of the bits you think are bone inserts ?

With ref to the Dorchester hilt it is identical to one I saw a picture of a while back and posted but have now lost of a gladius with a blade which tapered in a direct line from hilt to tip giving it a triangular profile.

An oddity I noticed was that the grip on both tapers from the pommel to the guard, whereas on most reconstructions I have seen where there is such a taper it is the other way round. I e-mailed the Dorchester museum about this but they did not reply Cry

I will try and find my post as the picture may still be on it.
That picture i think is from a gladius of a Germany Museum (Mainz?). I know that sword by a german speak article, i'll try to find it at home.

I know some guards made of bone lied horizontally. In fact i have made a reproduction of one of them:

[Image: Cesar_hilt.jpg]

The pommel is another bone lied vertically and with another two "caps".
A slightly OT but related subject.

Does anyone use ivory/bone substitutes for handles or pommels?

For example Micarta, Tagua/Ivory Nut, Polymer clay?

Bone is readily available, but ivory is expensive and problematic for a lot of moral reasons.

Travis
My gladius eagle-handle is imitation ivory. I got it from Nix Imperial.
Quote:A slightly OT but related subject.
Does anyone use ivory/bone substitutes for handles or pommels?
For example Micarta, Tagua/Ivory Nut, Polymer clay?
Bone is readily available, but ivory is expensive and problematic for a lot of moral reasons.
Travis
Travis, go to the bottom of this discussion, where I posted some links to faux ivory.
Hi Crispus

Have you tried this site: www.romanauxilia.com/Exploratio/imagebase .

Lots of pictures on here including the Dorchester piece.

Hope its of use

Regards

Mark
or more specifically use

http://www.romanauxilia.com/Exploratio/ ... ester4.htm

for the sword handle
Conal

I have done work for Dorchester Museum - I have contacts there - if I can be of any help to you here send me a PM with your email and I'll get in touch.

Where in the South are you? - we may be close.

Ta Ta for now

Mark.
Thanks Ferox and Martin.

Actually, the Exploratio site is where I got the pictures I have of the Dorchester sword handle. What I was really wondering was if anybody had any drawings or photos of bone guards or pommels which I am not familiar with already.

Martin,

Yes, the relavent plate is Tafel 2. The thin pieces are numbers 13,14 and 15, and the guards which I believe are described as coming from cavalry swords are nos. 22 - 24. The listing at the top of the section on page 14 says nos. 13-21 are 'Handschutz' (guard[s]?) for Mainz type swords. Nos 22-24 are described as 'Handschutz, wohl von Reiterschwertern' (handguards from cavalry swords?).

My questions over these pieces remain. If nos. 13 - 15 are for Mainz type swords, they seem far too small for any of tem to be an entire guard so I wonder if they could in fact be elements of a handle such as the Dorchester handle. I would also like to know if the identification of nos. 22 - 24 as cavalry swords is in any way verified, or whether it is either an assumption based on sculpture or an outdated idea whose name has stuck.

Lucius,

If you could get me pictures of the bone guards and pommels you have modelled your reconstrctions on I would be very grateful. Smile

Crispvs
Salve Crispus:

Your wish are my order:

I'm searching for scanning some pictures.

At the moment i can offer you some pics of the "triangular" blade sword, of Mainz Museum.

[url:10x2yny4]http://www.roemisches-mainz.de/mainz/pics/Fundberichte/knochen011g.jpg[/url]
[url:10x2yny4]http://www.roemisches-mainz.de/mainz/pics/Fundberichte/knochen012g.jpg[/url]

The book were are published:

Hubertus Mikler: Die römischen Funde aus Bein im Landesmuseum Mainz.
Montagnac/F.: Editions Mergoil 1997. Zugl.: Mainz, Univ.,
Diss. 1994. VII, 173 S.; 69 Taf. ISBN 2-907303-06-6

I think it helps you. The pommel of my sword is based on it.
Hi Crispus.

Quote:My questions over these pieces remain. If nos. 13 - 15 are for Mainz type swords, they seem far too small for any of tem to be an entire guard so I wonder if they could in fact be elements of a handle such as the Dorchester handle. I would also like to know if the identification of nos. 22 - 24 as cavalry swords is in any way verified, or whether it is either an assumption based on sculpture or an outdated idea whose name has stuck.

Ok, I ordered the book at Munich state library, will get it mid next week and check if I can find anything there (as I said I only have the B part of it as a copy so cannot look it up right away unfortunately). I'll get back to you then.
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