A RARE ENGLISH CUP-HILT RAPIER C.1630-45
About the piece
This is an example of a purely English rapier of the English Civil Wars period and the years which led to them. Its boat form guard is decorated with portrait heads including a crowned central caricature of King Charles flanked by Henrietta and facing a particularly grotesque allegorical countenance. Its form is identified by Norman as hilt form 91 which he discusses in its variations. This variation corresponds to the last described and specifically accords with Two with forward quillons piercing the boat-shell guard (which) are in the Montagu family armory. The Montagu family armory, of course, is that of the Earls of Sandwich, descendants of John Montagu, after whom the sandwich was purportedly named. The scarcity of this variant form and presence of the two examples cited, suggest a connection.Blade length: 34 1/8"