World War 1 British Royal Naval Officer's
Presentation Sword, sold
A WW1 Presentation British Royal Naval officer's sword, HMS Hebe,
in very good condition.
The presentation reads; "Presented to H. C. Ward by the Ship's
Company of H.M.S. Hebe. Nov 14th 1918"; HMS Hebe was an Alarm-class
torpedo gunboat launched in 1892, converted to a minesweeper in
1909, became a depot ship for submarines in 1910, was broken up
in October 1919. WW1 ended on Nov 11th 1918, so this sword was presented
to presumably the commander, H. C. Ward, by the ship's company for
getting them through World War One.
This sword is in well above average condition to say the very least;
I suspect the recipient retired / resigned from the RN, never wore
the sword and simply stored it. The 31 1/2 inch blade is in very
good condition, some rubbing from sheathing and drawing the sword
but nothing much. The blade is firm in the hilt. The hilt retains
virtually all of its gilt; it really stands out. The black fishskin
grip shows a couple of small moth holes, but is otherwise very good
indeed. The twisted grip wire bindings also very good. The leather
and gilt metal fittings scabbard is very good, though the centre
fitment is loose (easy to glue to secure, but we prefer to leave
that choice to the eventual owner). The locking flap of the guard
locates well onto the retaining pin of the scabbard's upper fitting,
though the locking flap is quite tight, probably because it was
never moved much.
Again, a well above average example, well worth the £800
price tag as you are unlikely to find a better example, also especially
because it is a presentation sword. Further / full sized images
available upon request. Please quote item reference number D95 (763).