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WW1 Coldstream Guards Wilkinson Sword, R G Winn, For Sale

In good condition, the WW1 Coldstream Guards Wilkinson Sword of the famous Rowland George Winn.

WW1 Coldstream Guards Wilkinson Sword of the famous Rowland George Winn

Sales enquiries

The honorable Rowland George Winn, first son and heir of the 2nd Baron St Oswald and Mabel Susan Forbes (daughter of Sir Charles Forbes), born 29th July 1893. Educated at Eaton, on the 24th January 1914 commissioned as a Lieutenant, 2nd Battalion of the Coldstream Guards (sword serial number 44503 for very early 1914, initials on blade "R G W"). Wounded 29th October 1914 at the First Battle of Ypres in WW1. While recuperating and unbeknown to his parents, married stage actress Evie Carew. This broke with class system rules and was reported on the front page of the Daily Mirror (this is how his parents found out) which was then widely reported around the world as the year's greatest scandal.

Promoted to Captain on 11th Sept 1916. Son, Rowland Denys Guy Winn, born 19th September. Despite his gallantry and service to king and country, Rowland George Winn was required to resign his commission with the Coldstream Guards because of their royal association and rule that no harlot or actress could attend regimental functions, which made being married to an actress unacceptable. So Rowland George Winn joined the Royal Flying Corps as a Flying Officer Captain on the 13th August 1917. It appears he was wounded / shot down as appointed as General Staff Officer 3rd Class (GSO3), Directorate of Air Quartermaster General Stores on 8th April 1918.

It appears he did not fully reconcile with his father who died in 1919, when, none the less, Rowland George Winn became 3rd Baron St Oswald. He and his wife had a second son, Anthony Edward Winn, who was killed at El Alamein, serving with King’s Royal Rifle Corps in WW2. The 3rd Baron St Oswald, that is Rowland George Winn, died in 1958.

You can listed to an account of the scandal on the BBC site here; Nostell Priory, Leeds: A Scandalous Love Affair. The romance that made the national headlines during wartime Britain.





The 32 1/4 inch picquet (slender, light weight for "levee" dress swords) blade is in very good condition and well etched with badge and battle hon ours for the Coldstream Guards. Blade firm in the hilt. The hilt with patchy plating loss and some patina. The grip with some age and small "moth patches" but generally good. The steel scabbard with quite some patches of plating loss and a few dings one side towards the chape, but still very sound. The sword sheathes and draws well but is stiff towards being fully sheathed.

Without the provenance and story, the sword would be worth considerably less. But, truly, Lieutenant Rowland George Winn's sword is worth every penny of £750. Please quote item reference U62. Further / full sized images available upon request. Box 0908-1m (1.553).

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