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German Sword

Article about: Thanks Mike, I really appreciate your helpful and detailed response. With regard to re-hilting imperial blades, I did find another online and thought I would draw your attention to it, thoug

  1. #21


    Thanks Mike, I really appreciate your helpful and detailed response. With regard to re-hilting imperial blades, I did find another online and thought I would draw your attention to it, though it is obviously a much finer sword than mine, (and you can see why such a fine blade would be re-used) but it does appear to be another example of an Imperial blade with a later hilt. Wittmann Militaria #33461C 3rd Reich Army Re-Hilt with Imperial Blade Are you suggesting that I should dismantle the sword in order to assess the work that has been done on the tang? The hilt and blade do appear perfectly fitted. Many thanks for your time, Doug

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  3. #22


    Hi Doug, No, definately not!!!!!!!!!!!!! If it is not broken, do not fix it!! No mate, keep it as it stands. Its a good sword as it stands and as I said, I would buy it and keep it as is. You could shine a torch under the langets and use a magnifying glass to check for the trade marks and name etc and also have a look at the ricasso and how well it fits with the hilt. Otherwise just enjoy the sword for what it is.
    Cheers Michael R

  4. #23


    Hi Again, Never seen it done before now I've seen two in ten minutes!!!! It is a shame that whoever had the damascus blade re hilted used such a common pattern hilt. Never mind, still a beautifull sword!!
    Cheers MR

  5. #24


    Thanks Mike, will do exactly as you suggest.

  6. #25


    The whole story is important to note, that the blade was owned by the German Empire - marks on the spine of the blade.
    (It was not a private property.)

    Attached Images Attached Images German Sword 
    Last edited by Rancid66; 01-26-2014 at 09:07 AM.

  7. #26


    Vedran, I think that I understand your possible concern with the piece, having never seen an item like the one pictured here myself. And it perhaps illustrates some of the “gray” areas with collecting what are or could be Weimar era military items, which is something that I did for a little while with both guns and blades (and is probably why I did not really specialize in them).

    With my first observation being that Weimar items are generally scarce, and that there can be a lot of variability. Which was no doubt due in part to the chaos that took place in Germany at the end of WWI - and the attempted imposition of arms control (including taking Army weapons out of civilian/other hands) by the Allies, and the periodic successes in evading the Arms Control Commission. With some of the verifiable facts being that the Reichswehr did adopt and use at first the old Imperial officer’s model swords for the Infantry, Cavalry, and Artillery - as well as an Einheitssäbel (ie: general purpose saber - my definition/translation). With the established Imperial models sometimes getting a Weimar date stamp and/or unit markings. With the earliest new manufacture Einheitssäbel that I know of having a 1928 date, which seems to roughly parallel the known new manufacture Weimar era S. 84/98 bayonets.

    And the other piece of the puzzle (as an example - IMO) being the post WW I Luger pistols that were rebuilt, refurbished, etc. from both new and old parts with inconsistent markings (or a lack of) further complicating the matter. Not to mention the “exceptions to the rule” that seem to pop up now and again. And that is with a weapon that has to fit together precisely just to function. But is not generally the case with blades (other than with bayonets that have to have locking mechanisms that fit on rifles). Best Regards, Fred

  8. #27


    Hi With regard to what Fred has said, I agree will it all and would sight the SG 98/05 and SG 84/98 bayonets that turn up every now and again with date stamps and serial number usually in the 1920's. They are usually in VG condition and heavily blued, apparently for re issue to the civil police but I would imagine also for the remaining military units of the then German Army. Your sword Doug, may well fall into a similar catagory but given that the German Imperial Army was not actually defeated and marched back to their homeland following the Armistice, I would suggest that there would have been more than enough sabre blades available to either use or rehilt so why would a military armourer create a none regulation pattern sword? Your sword is indeed a Prussian issue item but ask anyone who has served in the military and they will tell you about "liberated" Government property. Ergo, placement of a military hilt on a military blade or the placement of a private purchase hilt on a military blade by a none military armourer makes little or no difference as far as I am concerned. Still a nice and interesting sword!!!!
    Cheers again Michael R

  9. #28


    Thanks very much for the replies guys, and for taking an interest in my sword. Mike, I have read your post several times but I'm not quiet sure what you are saying- what do people who have served in the military say about liberated government property? I think you are saying that items are frequently liberated, and that this combination could therefore have existed in the Wiemar era.

    I'm very grateful for your help.

  10. #29


    They did not all bayonets belong to a regular Reichswehr.
    A large part of these bayonet was belonged Freikorps units, which served as a militia, to fight against Communism in Germany.

    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture German Sword  

  11. #30


    Hi Doug, What I was getting at was that although the sword was Prussian military property, it may have been aquired or not returned at the end of the war to the army, then there was nothing to stop the new owner or his son from adapting the sword for use during the TR period by re hilting it thus possibly saving some money in not having to buy a new sword? IMO, this is a more likely scenario than a military armourer or indeed a civilian contractor to the "new" army creating a none regulation pattern sword for issue to regular troops. Further, I would suggest that had the blade been retained, rehilted and used by the army then they would have almost definately re stamped the blade or hilt or both with goverment arsenal markings etc?? But Doug, this is all speculation and all I am doing, is theorising and trying to come up with what to me seems logical. The thought of the military accepting the amalgamation of two theoretically incompatable sword patterns to create a bastardisation seems very unlikely?? I speculate!! I hope that I have not clouded the water but at the end of the day, untill someone finds writen proof one way or the other, to me, logic appears to be the only available or satisfactory factor?? And what I am suggesting, appears in the circumstances, to be quite logical? Having droned on, for which I appologise, all this assumes that some dealer or collector has not just cobbled together two bits of swords. This latter point, I am not inclined to believe!!
    Cheers Michael

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