SOLD Antique Early 19th century Spanish Colonial Mexican Basket Hilt Sword Espada Ancha
SOLD Antique early 19th century, rare Spanish Colonial sword Espada Ancha with a slightly curved single – edged, sturdy steel blade, adorned on each face with incised design of stylized rayed sun.
Steel basket hilt comprised of a flattened knuckle bow, with two side bars, shallow cup handguard with recurved crossbar and oval plain wood grip surmounted by shaped steel pommel.
Espada Ancha is the sword of distinctive form characteristic and unique for the New Spain; that is, what is now Mexico and the southwestern United States.
Only 1 or 2 voyages a year from Spain were sent to support, supply and expand its "New World". As such the supplies needed by the occupying Spanish Conquistadors (both naval and military forces) in general and specifically weapons and armor were always in very short supply. Additionally, as Spain lost interest and wars the supply to its colonies dwindled until becoming non-existent.
Therefore, whenever swords or cutlass became damaged or needed repair it was then parted-out and re-worked, re-hilted, or re-bladed locally so as to make a usable weapon. These re-worked swords and cutlasses were called "Espada Ancha", translated as Broad Sword.
In many cases new locally hand forged hilts were easily made and attached to existing retained blades. The actual dates of various pieces of an "Espada Ancha" can possibly span hundreds of years as these weapons were cared for and prized. And today these swords are also highly prized as the represent a unique aspect of the colonization of the Americas and the American Colonial period.
1.Spanish Military Weapons in Colonial America, 1700-1821 by Sidney B. Brinckerhoff; Pierce A. Chamberlain
2. "The Unique Swords of Old Mexico", by Bill Adams. Originally published in Knives '85 (DBI Books, 1984, edited by Ken Warner)
For related early 19th century Mexican swords please see the last 3 pictures from the various references attached to the listing.
Overall length: 78 cm (30.71 inches)
Length of the blade: 62.5 cm (2439⁄64 inches)