The dagger (baselard) was known to be one of the most vital pieces of equipment that our ancestors carried during the medieval times, and these were also seen in various kits of armored troops. Later, the dagger became a widespread tool since it was also utilized specifically for self-defense.
There are seven main dagger classifications that can be distinguished and among these is the baselard sometimes referred to as the basilard or the baslard.
In modern usage by the antiquarians, the word baselard was mostly utilized for the kind of fourteenth-century dagger that featured an I-shaped handle which was based from, and eventually evolved out from the thirteenth century knightly dagger.
Contemporary usage of the baselard was not that consequent, and the word baselard in Middle English and Middle French would most likely be appropriate when applied to a much bigger class of larger daggers.
The term which was present in numerous variants of spellings appeared during the first half of the fourteenth century; additionally, there was also enough proof and information that the word baselard had somehow originated from the Medieval Latin or Middle French.
Origin of the Baselard
The baselard sword is known for its extended blade which is highly comparable to that of a sword; the weapon was said to have originated from Basel, Switzerland, which is why the blade was named the baselard.
These types of daggers can be seen exhibited in artwork that has been created during the thirteenth century onwards, and these were most probably favored by a lot of wealthy individuals (specifically merchants) and were carried along their belts.
When it comes to the use of this dagger, the baselard had a dual purpose: one was to provide adequate protection and the second was to offer a sense of style to its wielder.
This type of dagger was popular all over Europe and it was not only known as a Swiss specialty. In Italy, it often appeared during the fourteenth century, and Ewart Oakeshott claims that during this period in Italy, it was considered as the most popular kind of dagger; and because of this, almost every piece of historical works of art featured the weapon.
Numerous effigies and paintings of knights such as the wall paintings in Italy’s Avio castle showcased an infantry armed with the baselard daggers.
There are a couple of actual surviving pieces of these daggers that can be located in numerous museums today; and most commonly, these baselards date all the way back to the second half of the fourteenth century through the end of the fifteenth century.
The descriptions for the samples that appeared during the middle of the fourteenth century were preserved as part of tomb effigies; and by the middle of the fourteenth century, the baselard eventually became a popular sidearm tool wielded by the more violent section of society.
Because of this, the weapon somehow retained its connection with hooliganism and disorder despite it being an excellent tool for protection and self-defense. At some point in history, there were a couple of German law codes that have been released during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries where the rule outlaws wielding the baselard within the city.
Yet by the late fourteenth century, the baselard sword became quite the fashionable piece in most areas of Western Europe including places such as Italy, England, France, and Germany. And as time passed, the baselard eventually developed in the Holbein or Swiss Dagger which was later incorporated into the dress daggers of the Nazi during The Second World War.
Characteristics of the Sword
While baselards are considered as a kind of dagger, there are still distinguishing characteristics between the dagger and a baselard.
When it comes to its appearance, the baselard can be described as something between the short sword and the long dagger, and it also features a blade that measures about forty to seventy centimeters in length.
The blade is long enough for everyone to see when it is hanging from the owner’s belt. When speaking of its most notable feature, the hilt of the baselard sword comes in the form of a capital I; it takes this form since the sword has a huge pommel and guard but is much straighter compared to the rondel.
Its pommel and crossguard appears to have a crescent-like shape though the pommel was made flat to allow the wielder to easily withdraw and secure the weapon; this type of pommel also provided an excellent surface for the wielder’s hand to reinforce adequate blows compared to other types of sword.
The earlier versions of the baselard sword usually featured grips that were adorned in scales of horn or wood and these materials were attached to the sword thick tang. In the later samples of the baselard sword, little plate sheets served as a pommel and cross which sandwiched a piece of carved wood in between the area that encloses the narrow tang.
This form is usually referred to as the Holbein or Swiss Dagger, and as for the blade of the sword, it comes in either the single or double-edged form with a leveled diamond cross-section.
Baselard Sword for Sale
Today’s practitioners and enthusiasts are highly interested in the quality and appearance of the replica medieval replica weapons which is why there are numerous shops that feature various replicas of the baselard sword.
One can purchase these weapons from numerous online weapon shops so if someone is interested in owning one of their own, they can definitely find a baselard for sale in one of the known weapon shops around.
There are two options when choosing the baselard sword for sale since these are categorized as the fully functional blade and the decorative piece. The fully functional baselard for sale has an edge that is sharpened upon purchase so that it can readily be utilized for training or cutting practice.
For the decorative baselard, its blade is left dull and unsharpened since it will primarily be utilized to adorn one’s home; but of course, it can also be added to one’s growing collection of traditional armor and weapons which is definitely a great addition to a serious weapons connoisseur.