62. COURT SWORD French, 1760
Hilt steel carved in low relief with various figures, Neptune, nymph, dolphin, rococo scrolls, flowers and foliage against stippled gold background. Pas d'âne functional. Guard bilobate, ornamented with epic scenes. Grip rounded rectangular, with pronounced taper, of silver wire: (a) flat metal strip wound with fine wire, (b) (e) braided wire, (c) (d) wire- wound wire.
Blade three-edged; at base gilded panel and etched trophy against hatched background; above this, forte blued and gilded over etching of floral scrolls; on left, figure of Hercules in cartouche.
Scabbard of black velvet over wood; mountings en suite with, front, Minerva; back, flower in scrolled medallion.
L.1554 L. 99 (82) Wt. 383
Plate XLVIII Lent by Gouverneur Morris, 1916
63. COURT SWORD French, 1760
Hilt steel with decoration in gold damascene slightly raised, representing numerous subjects from La Fontaine's fables - the only instance, it is believed, of such decorative motifs appearing upon a sword. Guard: (1) Animals are without a king, the crown will fit none of them; monkey puts on crown and wears it around his waist until fox lures him into trap with a story of treasure; whereupon animals decide that "few a crown would fit." (2) Ape gives advice to young lion king to subordinate his self-will and vanity to the good of the state, illustrating his advice by stories of two asses flattering one another. (3) Eagle and owl make a treaty whereby each should spare the offspring of the other; owl describes her young ones as beautiful; so eagle eats them one day, not recognizing them as owl's. (a.) Mouse, meeting cat and cock in company, runs away trembling upon hearing the latter crow. His mother later informs him that for all his noise cock is harmless, while sleek good-natured cat is his deadliest foe. Ricasso, left, fox, crow and cheese; right, frog persuades friendly rat to visit his home under water. Since the latter could not swim, frog ties himself to his leg and, pulling him below the surface, was about to drown him when kite seizes rat and frog, bearing off both together. Pas d'âne with nail-head ornament. Quillon and knuckle guard with leaf and flower motifs; at center of latter, crow as noted; right, dog who drops his bone to seize the reflection in the brook. Pommel, fox and stork: left, fox invites stork to dinner and serves it in a small shallow dish; right, stork returning the courtesy serves the fox with supper in tall narrow-necked vase. (page 34) Square, ovoid grip of silver wire: (a) two strands twisted wire-wound wire, (b) fine twisted wire, (c) two strands medium twisted wire, (d) same as (b); (b) (c) (d) oxidized. Blade three-edged, colechimarde; decorated with gilded and etched panels) including scrolls, strapwork, cross-hatched background, trophies.
26.145.329 L. 100 (83.5) Wt. 489
Plate XLIX Reubell Benefaction
Bibliography: La Fontaine (Tr. by Walter Thornburg. Ill, by Gustav Doré). London and New York, n. d. Guard: (1) p. 335; (2) p. 733; (3) p. 308. Ricasso, left, p. 5. Knuckle guard, right, p. 360. Pommel, p. 75. La Fontaine (Tr. by Elizur Wright, Jr.). Boston, 1842, vol. VI, pp 5, 163.
64. DRESS SWORD French, 1765
Hilt of russet steel, enriched with gold in design of flowering plants, tendrils, and trophied medallions these in line - and surface-damascene in slight relief. Grip of (a) heavy twisted silvered wire, (b) crinkled russet tinsel, (c) same as (a), (d) concave russet tinsel with small gold rosette, (e) fine braided silvered wire.
Blade three-edged; forte blued, gilded over etched trophies and scrolls. On left, in cartouche, inscribed: L'HONNEUR ME FAIT SERVIR. Base of blade etched with strapwork against hatched background and heavily gilded.
26.145.333 L. 94 (77) Wt. 390
Plate L Reubell Benefaction
65. DRESS SWORD French (Paris), 1768
Hilt silver chiseled in low relief and ajouré; ornaments include flowers, doves, quivers, trophies, medallions. Grip of metal en suite. On left anterior pas d'âne three marks: Paris date stamp 1768; discharge mark of Inspector Jean Jacques Prevost (1762-1768); probably maker's mark, possibly of Blaire Meunier, rue de la Fromagerie. On left base of grip mark apparently of another maker (Gabriel Marguerite, rue Quincampoix?). Stamp of Bureau of Paris (ET) also appears.
Blade three-edged, on forte blued and gilded over etching of trophies and conventional scrolls.
26.145.276 L. 95.5 (81.5) Wt. 365
Note: This sword suggests in its ajouré treatment a survival of the Neapolitan-Spanish manner, shown for example in Nos. 24-2 5, though in type of ornament it is obviously Louis XV.
Plate L Reubell Benefaction
This and the following two numbers may be described as in "the Rhine torsade manner."
66. DRESS SWORD Strasbourg, 1750-1770
Hilt of silver chased en torsade. Guard chased with fine (many) lines radiating from center toward edges, bulging anteriorly and posteriorly; borders partly plain, partly chiseled en torsade. Flattened grip of metal en suite. Pommel slightly globose, flattened. On right anterior pas d'âne undetermined hail mark, IFS or IES in rectangle between two fleurs-de-lis (?) (cf. No. 50).
Blade double-edged with median flattening; ovoid at base, and here, etched and gilded in cartouche, trophy, scrolls, and strapwork against hatched background; above this etched arabesques, strapwork, amorino with heart suspended as plummet - gilt in the lines; inscription: PEINE INNUTILE; also on each side two short wavy lines gilded over etching.
26.145.351 L. 94.5 (78.5) Wt. 424
Plate LI Reubell Benefaction
67. DRESS SWORD Dutch, 1750-1775
Hilt silver chased with parallel lines en torsade. Guard of irregular shape with pointed anterior lobe which forks at the tip and spans the quillon. Double quillon. Grip of white porcelain decorated in low relief with rococo scrolls and painted medallions: man, women and children, basket of flowers, trees, distant landscape. On knuckle guard hall marks: (1) Amsterdam town mark; (2) unidentified maker's mark; (3) swan (?).
Blade short, double-edged, with median flattening; panel at base etched and gilded in strapwork, palmette, medallions with classical busts against hatched background; above this, etching en suite.
26.145.343 L. 89 (73) Wt. 434
Plate LI Reubell Benefaction