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Broadsword of Oliver Cromwell

Artist/maker unknown, English

Made in England, Europe

c. 1650

Etched steel [blade]; embossed iron chiseled in high relief, wood, silver wire [hilt]

Length (overall): 38 1/8 inches (96.8 cm) Blade: 32 1/2 × 1 15/16 inches (82.6 × 4.9 cm) Hilt: 5 1/16 × 4 5/8 inches (12.9 × 11.7 cm) Height (pommel): 2 1/8 inches (5.4 cm) Diameter (pommel): 1 5/16 inches (3.3 cm) Weight: 3.1 lb. (1405g)

Curatorial Department:
European Decorative Arts and Sculpture

Object Location:

Currently not on view

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
Bequest of Carl Otto Kretzschmar von Kienbusch, 1977

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This is one of the finest surviving swords of a type favored during the English Civil War (1642-51). The long-standing association of this sword with English statesman Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658) is consistent with the unusual inscription and heraldic arms of England and Ireland on the blade, and with the outstanding quality of the hilt's chiseled decoration.

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