Sword of Archangel Michael, Hans Memling
Hans Memling Sword of Archangel Michael
Archangel Michael Sword project, based on Hans Memling painting, circa 1480.
Some time ago I have started with a special kind of sword... Let me say some more about this project.
Hans Memling (1430-1494) was one of the most talented and precise artist of Netherlands late medieval / early Rennessaince period. We can find very detailed examples of medieval swords in his works as well as the mystic, mesmerizing spirit of his time.
Some time ago I have decided to create the sword based on the one from the painting of Archangel Michael, dated to 1480. This used to be the right wing of a triptych. The center panel probably showed a pieta by Rogier van der Weyden, Memling painted the wings. It is very small painting, oil on oakwood panel 41 x 16cm. Now in London, Wallace Collection.
That sword is particularly interesting to me. Michael is usually depicted holding a sword. That one seems to be a powerfull weapon, black steel, unusual design - but created in 15th century it is obviously based on existing swords types. This will be special and unique sword - never before recreated.
My design is based on human proportions of the Archangel proportions and based on real swords from this period. Details are very small on this painting, so it needs to know a lot of real swords dated to second half of 15th century.
I expected something weird to be honest - but it looks like this will be well balanced and nice battle sword, not very far from real ones. Not too big - not too small, with good proportions - just slightly longer grip than usual, which makes it more special.
There is inscription in latin on the blade:
Qui mecum venient non cadunt in obscurum - means: Those who come with me will not fall into darkness.
Grip is black with X-style risers. On the grip is silver wire and brass rivets.
Scabbard is made with ash and bench wood, glued with resin, covered with natural linen and leather which is hand stitched on the back. Scabbard is pure black with inscription and cross, painted with gold. Inscription in latin is the name and title: +Sanctus Michael Archangelus+
Decoration style is roughly based on 15th century style, however it contains also some special elements to give it some mysticism. Belt and suspension is dark brown tone of more natural and slightly worn look.
There is a set of fittings inspired by 15th century original examples.
total length 1060mm
blade length 790mm
blade width 61mm
balance ca. 65mm
weight ca. 1650g