Friday, August 23, 2013

Mastery of Design: A Diamond-Set Sword and Scabbard, 1750

Sword and Scabbard
German, 1750
Additional work
in 1820 by
Rundell, Bridge &
The Royal Collection

This sword and scabbard, created around 1750, in Germany features elaborate sculpted gold figures set with diamonds. Clearly meant for ceremonial use as opposed to actual battle, the sword bears a figure of a recumbent lion, winding foliage and a barred helmet.

British King George IV purchased the sword in 1820, but didn’t think it was sparkly enough. He asked the Royal Jewelers at the time—Rundell, Bridge & Rundell—to add additional diamonds. They added many sparklers, particularly two large brilliant-cut diamonds which they supplied themselves.

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