History of the rapier sword
The term 'ropera sword' is originally from Spanish and it first appears in 1468. Through the following years the other countries were adopting the term quickly, in France they speak of 'la rapière' and then England, adapting it to «rapier».
The sword became a status symbol in the 16th century. But the sword began to be used also in the street accompanying the cape, the hat and, finally, the dress and clothing in general.
Rapier Sword characteristics
- The blade: Being a sword originally from Spanish, the blade is forged following the spanish requirements, a well-known complex and demanding process to guarantee the rigidity and quality of the blade. The blade of this sword is divided into three thirds: strong third (closest to the guard), the middle third and the weak third (the last four fingers of the tip)
- Lining or Guard: acts as protection for the fingers and hand. From here comes the name "rapier bow sword", because it is these metal pieces with quite intricate shapes, which differentiate it from a normal rapier sword.
Combat use Rapier Sword
Rapiere bow swords could be used in different modes of fighting; sword-to-hand, sword-to-buckle, sword-to-dagger and cloaked sword fighting. The fight was always front-line, considering the lightness of that sword, it was very important that the warrior was agile and fast.
Given this speed in the duels, the bows protected the hands and fingers of the warriors who wielded them, thus lengthening the fight between fighters. In turn, footwork was very important, as well as lateral displacements. They were the preferred swords for duels.