1805 Pattern Senior British Royal Navy Officer's
A levee weight 1805 pattern Georgian / Napoleonic British Royal
Navy officer's sword, the ivory grip indicating it was for a senior,
perhaps flag officer. In good overall condition.
Levee (light) weight swords have thinner blades than regular size
swords. Many Royal Naval officers preferred them on the basis that
if they were involved in a sword fight, they would use on the ship's
cutlasses as these were much more effective as fighting weapons
on fairly cramped ships. Levee weight swords were also, it has to
be said, worn extensively by the ship surgeons which actually increases
the likelihood the sword was on a ship that saw battle service.
The 26 3/4 inch blade is in good condition and firm in the hilt.
The hilt retains much gilt. The finely checkered cut ivory grip
is impressively done. Some ivory loss under the pommel. The twisted
grip wire bindings are good. The original scabbard has survived
but not very well; the stitching is loose, the lower fitting has
come off (the leather has split at this point). The sword does not
sheath or draw at all well and we recommend that the eventual buyer
either has a leather worker replace the leather, or simply displays
the sword outside of the scabbard. But, take note, it is a big bonus
to have the original scabbard in any condition.£600. Please
quote item reference number I51. Further / full sized images upon
request. Tube 23 (1.994).
Who knows where this sword has been or what the original owner
experienced and where. In any event, a senior ivory grip RN officers
sword from at or around the time of the Battle of Trafalgar for
only £xxx is one of the best and most evocative purchases
you can make. Please quote item reference I90 (1093). Further /
full sized images available upon request.