Court Small Sword
- Dated: circa 1757
- Artist/Maker: unknown
- Culture: English
- Place of origin: England
- Medium and Techniques: silver gilt set with diamonds rubies and emeralds
- Measurements: small sword height: 9.8 cm; width: 10 cm; depth: 7.9 cm. Sheath height: 82 cm; width: 2.7 cm; depth: 2 cm
From around 1640, light swords with short, flexible, pointed blades appeared in response to new fencing techniques that emphasised thrusting at speed. They were worn increasingly with civilian clothes as ‘small swords’, offering a means of self-defence but largely denoting status for the well-dressed gentleman.
Small swords were items of male jewellery. By the 1750s, their elaborate gold and silver hilts, mounted with precious stones and fine enamelling, were the products of the goldsmith and jeweller rather than the swordsmith. They made fitting rewards for distinguished military and naval service. With their blades tucked away inside scabbards, it was their ostentatious and expensive hilts that carried their thrust.
By tradition this sword belonged to Charles Middleton, 1st Baron Barham (1726-1813), whose long career included service in the Seven Years’ War (1756-63) and acting as First Lord of the Admiralty during the Trafalgar Campaign (1805). In 1757 the Assembly of Barbados awarded Middleton ‘100 pistoles … to buy him a sword for taking a French privateer infesting the coast of the island.’
Source: Copyright 2013 © V&A Images
Welp … I just watched Blink
Why is it I always end up watching the terrifying things right before bed time?
I WILL NEVER TRUST A STATUE AGAIN AS LONG AS I LIVE!
A study in panel borders:
Inspired by this awesome post about making comics quickly, I took a look at some comics I own to get some sense of different kinds of panel design choices.
I came away feeling like I’d learned a little less than I’d hoped, but here are some takeaways:
* You can get away with smaller panels than you think
* Extremely weird comic panels CAN work, but when it fails it looks painful and forced.
* Simple is not bad.
* There are actually a LOT of possible combinations.
Scott McCloud uses a 4x3 sliceup of the page, and it’s four VERTICAL slices and three HORIZONTAL ones, which is weird because it makes the panels, on average, LESS square. This works with the particular comic really WELL though, because he draws himself in closeup, talking, a LOT.
DAR and Narbonic both are webcomics mashed into book format, but both worked surprisingly well as page layout in the end.
Blacksad is REALLY variable and the page layouts are hand-crafted on a per-page basis. No speed gains here, but perhaps a message that full custom has its place.
The Resonator is fairly formal but never *too* rigid with panel choices. Lots of narrow or tall panels, which works as a way to alternate between big establishing shots and dense dialog. Very tall panels for single speaker, long ones for two-person dialog or to combine a lot of text and visuals. In general, Resonator is print-native and has TINY text…
Ultimate X-Men is a fun read but the panel design is a disaster. Almost none of the choices of graphic design work at all. Occasionally an establishing shot hits home, but in general the layout is trying WAY too hard.
Watchmen. Formalism raised to the ultimate. It’s precise, it’s a 3x3 grid, it’s piss-on-a-plate-with-no-spills precise and that’s fine, for two reasons: one, everything is about time, and two, it gets the panels the hell out of the way of the story.
Augustus is an example of what Ultimate X-Men was trying to do, except it succeeds. Lots of variation, but on average very orderly. Kind of strikes me as the sort of thing you “have to be GOOD” to pull off well.
- Dated: circa 1640-60
- Maker: Johannis Brach
- Culture: German, Solingen
- Medium: steel, silver
- Measurements: blade length: 32 1/2”
The hilt consists of stylish elements with delicately engraved floral details. In form, the hilt accords with Norman type 111 with double shell guards are delicately pierced in a matrix of intersecting circles. The blade, signed "JOHANNIS BRACH SOLINGEN" and "JOHANNIS BRACH ME FECIT", as well, retains considerable original blued finish. Another rapier signed by Johannis Brach is in the Berlin Zeughaus.
Source: Copyright 2013 © Fagan Arms