American and European swords in the historical collections of the United States National Museum (Bulletin of the United States National Museum)

Author : Theodore Thomas Belote
Book Type : Collection Catalogue

Comment : This is an old fashion catalog (dated 1932), meaning precise, structured & complete, but showing only small, black and white photographs. With a single photo of each of the more that 250 swords, we need to rely all the more on their description. Fortunately, that description is qualitative and completed by information on the former owner of the sword whenever available.
American Swords and Sword Makers, Vol. 1

Author : Richard H. Bezdek
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 0-87364-765-3

Comment : An impressive reference book, listing exactly what it boasts, American sword makers along with their region and period of activity.

It also includes about 200 black and white photographs of typical period swords.
American Swords and Sword Makers, Vol. 2

Author : Richard H. Bezdek
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 1-58160-016-X

Comment : A supplement of information, in the manner of the first volume, including information on crafstmen and retailers. This volume includes very interesting catalog reprints and 400 pictures, all in black and white, unfortunately.
AMI magazine number 2, p 40-42 : Le Sabre d'Officier d'Infanterie Belge mod.1889

Author : F. Koekelberg et G. Hardy
Book Type : Article

Comment : This is a rarity, one of the two articles and one book I know of which foccusses on Belgian edged weapons.

This article describes the Belgian infantry sword model 1889. This sword type is actually still in use nowadays in both the military and the Gendarmerie.
AMI magazine number 30, p20-23 : Les Epees des Officiers Belges

Author : Claude Feys
Book Type : Article

Comment : Again, this is a rarity, if only because it treats of Belgian edged weapons. This article describes the five types (dutch type, 1st and 2nd general types for officers/staff officers) of Belgian military epees. It also shows the sword given to general Mathieu Brialmont by the officers of the second regiment in 1830.

This article is not always coherent with L.Leconte's work (regarding the dating of the First and Second General type, and the description of general Brialmont's sword as being of the Dutch type) and I believe it is Leconte who is in the right.
An Introduction to European Swords

Author : Anthony North
Book Type : Exhibition catalogue
ISBN : 0 11 290378 9

Comment : This book is meant as an introduction to the different types of European Swords, but gives a lot of attention to the smallsword.

The text, though short, is instructive. The photographs are very well, though now a little dated, and show exceptional items.
Antiquites et objets d'art n 6: Armes et armures

Author : Claude Blair, Lionello Giorgio Boccia
Book Type : Reference

Comment : A generalist approach to the subject, but the occasion to present some beautiful pieces of armor and quite a few swords, including pieces by Morisset and Bottet.
Armes blanches : symbolisme, inscriptions, marquages, fourbisseurs, manufactures

Author : Jean Lhoste, Jean-Jacques Buigne
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-2865510412

Comment : A book on a very specific subject. Clearly useful as reference but not a very easy read.
Armes et Armures / Wapens en Harnassen

Author : Musee royal de l'Armee et d'Histoire militaire, Bruxelles
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 90-71936-074

Comment : This book is important to me, if only because it is one of the very few books related to arms and armour collections in Belgium. It explains how the collection came to be and where it was housed before being place in the Porte de Hall, goes on to briefly describe the evolution of both edged weapons and firearms, and ends by presenting more than 150 objects from the collection. Each is illustrated by a single photograph, most in black and white, but 25 in color.

Of course, this is a but a sample from the impressive collection now housed in the Musee de l'Armee, in Brussels.
Armes et Armures Russes

Author : Youri Miller and Al.
Book Type : Reference

Comment : A presentation of some of the most interesting pieces from the Kremlin collection. This book is full of huge colour pictures, along with a precise description of each piece. Its introduction includes several prints of Russian uniforms through the ages.

Although it includes more than swords, there are enough of them, and of such quality, that I did not for one second regret buying it.
Armes insolites du XVIe au XVIIIe siecle

Author : Jean-Pierre Reverseau
Book Type : Exhibition catalogue
ISBN : 2-7118-2381-4

Comment : Take a tour of the most bizarre, the most select and the most unusual weapons. Combination weapons make up a big part of the selection, but there are also armor for children and dwarves, strange helmets, miniature pistols, all interesting by their rarity and strangeness.
Armours from the Pidhirtsi Castle

Author : Maciej Downar-Dukowicz, Jan Sliwinski
Book Type : Exhibition catalogue
ISBN : 978-83-937701-1-3

Comment : This is a book on very specific subject. It traces the whereabouts of a series of armours which were located at Pidhirtsi castle in 1939 and have since been removed and separated. It then describes the armors in astounding detail, up to marks left by the smith's hammer and their possible meaning. Photographs are plenty and of great quality

All text is in Polish, English and Ukrainian.
Arms and Armor from Iran: The Bronze Age to the End of the Qajar Period

Author : Manouchehr Moshtagh Khorasani
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-3932942228

Comment : A mammoth work from a scholar who was granted access to Iran's foremost museums and collections. The catalogue presents about 300 pieces in detail, along with dimensions & weight. The pictures are not always perfect, color balance being an issue, but they are sufficiently illustrative to show the quality and diversity of these collections.

However, the added value of this book is more along the lines of the global approach to the subject, starting with the history of the region and the cultural influences which impacted its arts. The text takes up almost as many pages as the catalogue itself and give an insight into the value attached to these arms and armor, their symbolism and the challenges Iran identity faced through the ages.
Arms of the Paladins. The Richard R. Wagner Jr. Collection of Fine Eastern Weapons

Author : Oliver S. Pinchot
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 1-931464-66-9

Comment : This book presents a great collection of oriental weapons including projectile weapons, hafted weapons, daggers, pistolds, longarms and swords.

The variety and richness of the pieces is impressive and the presentation is clear and precise.
Asiatische Blankwaffen - Asian Edged Weapons

Author : Deutsche Klingenmuseum Solingen, Barbara Grotkamp-Schepers, Maximilian Berkel
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 978-3-943856-62-0

Comment : This catalogue presents the museums collection of about 250 weapons from the Ottoman, Caucasian, Persian, Indian, Chinese, Japanese and Malay archipelago regions.

One page per weapon, with sometimes several views of the same and descriptions in both English and German.

A good witness of the diversity of said collection and the type of book any self-respecting museum should be able to offer (here thanks to external funding by Hans Jochen Goldschmidt).
Aux Armes Citoyens ! Les Sabres a emblemes de la Revolution

Author : Muse de la Revolution francaise
Book Type : Exhibition catalogue

Comment : A great collection shown to its advantage through precise black and white photographs and nine color ones for the beauty of it. The introduction give some information as to the context of the creation of these sabres along with the symbolism which was used and its signification at the time.
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Belgian Smallswords, Status Symbols of Times Past

Author : Benoit Dupont
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-2-9601949-0-6

Comment : This is the book I dreamed about when I started collecting smallswords and could not find any relevant detailed information regarding Belgian models.

Years later, I finally decided to write it myself.

I give you the only book on Belgian smallswords and a must-have for any smallsword enthousiast !!
Blankwaffen aus drei Jahrhunderten

Author : Klaus Hilbert
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 3894881232, 978-3894881238

Comment : A very rich and well structured book on edged weapons from Saxony. Showing more than 200 swords, daggers and staff weapons. Apart from 16 colors plates, all photos are in black and white. The small format bellies the amount of information this book contains.

The text is in German only, unfortunately. But hey ! Why not learn a little German ? It might come handy, especially if the collection is ever expanded to other German states.
Blankwaffen, Vol II

Author : Heribert Seitz
Book Type : Reference

Comment : The second tome of a duology on edged weapons, this tome covers the period from the end of 16th century to 1850. The approach is based on the description of fashion and its underlying causes with the aim of helping the reader date a sword based on its style.

The book also devotes about 35 pages to the art of fencing.
Blankwaffen: Fuhrer Durch Die Ausstellung [Deutsches Klingenmuseum Solingen]

Author : Hans-Ulrich Haedeke
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 3-7972-0523-0

Comment : This catalog presents the edged weapons found in Solingen's Blades Museum.

It is meant as a support to the exhibition, and contains a succinct description of objects, display case per display case, with pictures of the 50 most beautiful or remarkable ones.
British Cut and Thrust Weapons

Author : John Wilkinson-Latham
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 0-7153-5351-9

Comment : An extremely interesting book as far as military regulation model swords are concerned, it goes a step further and also describes pole arms, bayonets and, thankfully, civilian swords.
British Military Swords, Volume I: 1600 to 1660 The English Civil Wars and the Birth of the British Standing Army

Author : Stuart C. Mowbray
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 1931464618, 978-1931464611

Comment : This is the first volume of an ongoing series of books on British military swords up to the 1780's. Mr Mowbray and his friend Joe Puleo crisscrossed Britain in order to visit 19 different museums and used his mobile photo studio to take the 1000+ pictures found in the book. The writing is clearly American in style and though the quips can either amuse or detract from the subject, it makes for a reference book that can actually be read from cover to cover.
Bron Katalog zbiorow Catalogue of the Weapons Collection from the Museum at Kielce

Author : Ryszard de Latour
Book Type : Collection Catalogue

Comment : The description of 91 objects from the National Museum in Kielce, Poland, with black and white photographs and captions in both Polish and English. The chosen items are varied but represent mostly swords, with a few pieces of armour and very few guns. A series of Polish sabres is, of course, to be found.
Catalogue of European Court Swords and Hunting Swords, including the Ellis, De Dino, Riggs, and Reubell collections

Author : Dean Bashford
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 0-11-290378-9

Comment : Except for the fact that this book is only available in low quality copies or at a premium, it is a great source of information on smallswords. The collection is magnificent, well depicted by more than a hundred black and white plates, and extremely well described.
Civil War Army Swords, including the influential prewar decades. A study of United States Army Swords from 1832 through 1865.

Author : John H. Thillmann
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-1931464314

Comment : This second book by John H. Thillmann is another reference in the field of American sword studies. Its 600+ pages contain a wealth of information on regulation and presentation army swords and sabres from the period.

The more than 2000 photos are mostly in black and white, but some swords which are best rendered in color are presented in the not-negligible color section.

There must be more to say about these swords, but I can't see what that might be. Get it before it is out-of-print !
Civil War Cavalry & Artillery Sabers: A Study of United States Cavalry and Artillery Sabers, 1833-1865.

Author : John H. Thillmann
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 9780917218927

Comment : The pinnacle of reference books. John H. Thillmann's first book is a maker-per-maker study of the sabers which were used in the American Civil War.

The introduction focuses on the list of concerned models and the 'classic' rendering of their parts. Each maker/importer/retailer/assembler is then presented in turn, along with numerous photographs of the sabers attributed to them and a detailed descriptions of their specificities. The resulting work contains 1400 photographs, 60 of them in color, along with so much information that, when the author signals that some area warrants more research, you cannot help but think 'that is a very, very specific subject to work on'. It's only drawback: It is out-of-print and so sought after that prices skyrocket.
Collection Pierre Petitot, les armees de l'ancien regime 1679-1790

Author : D. Delavenne, D. Lafarge
Book Type : Sales Catalogue

Comment : Sales catalogue from 1989 containing details on one of the best French Ancien Regime collection of the 20th century. This catalogue, though quite early, contains quite a few pictures of key items and has obtained the status of a reference on the subject.
Cut and Thrust Weapons

Author : Eduard Wagner
Book Type : Reference

Comment : This huge and heavy book from 1967 means to present an overview of edged weapons from around the world. The drawings are well executed, though sometimes oversized when depicting a less convoluted piece. It comes from a time when library shelf space was of little import.
Das Schwert - Gestalt und Gedanke / The Sword - Form and Thought

Author : D. Klingenmuseum Solingen, B. Grotkamp-Schepers, I. Immel, P. Johnsson und S. Wetzler & L. Hoffmeister
Book Type : Exhibition Catalogue and study
ISBN : 978-3-930315-01-7

Comment : This book is more than a beautiful catalogue written in German and English. It also presents a theory regarding the relation in terms of size between the different parts of the swords found in the collection.

This theory, illustrated by beautiful line drawings, uses geometrical constructions in order to show, in retrospect, that smiths used such means to determine relative lengths of their creations' parts (pommel, grip, blade, guard, etc ...).

The last part of the book introduces a few contemporary sword makers.
Degen, Pallasche, Sabel, Faschinenmesser. Griffwaffen fur Hieb und Stich aus dem Bestand des Militarhistorischen Museums Dresden

Author : Dr. Klaus Hilbert, Karl Lehmann, Lothar Richmann
Book Type : Collection Catalogue

Comment : This small little booklet does a very good job at presenting the regulation swords of Germany, going so far as to include sword knots and accessories. There is little text on top of the illustrations but these are in (faded) color.

As a bonus, we get a picture of the museum's impressive reserves.
Des garde-pompes aux sapeurs-pompiers : 1490-1900

Author : Dominique Pages
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-2356980373

Comment : There are a few sword and sabers in this book, but, though they are nice pieces, they but supplement a much larger collection of objets relative to French firemen.

In a field where most collectors focus on helmets, Dominique Pages presents the diversity of these objects, while putting forward the evolution of the profession through the ages. An eye-opener.
Des Sabres et des Epees : Tome Troisieme : Troupes a pieds - de Louis XIV a nos jours

Author : Michel Petard
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 2-912430-10-0

Comment : This book is the third and last of a series, the first two concentrating of cavalry weapons (vol 1: up to the Empire, vol 2: from the Empire on). Both of these are quite hard to find and fetch premium prices.

This third volume presents 736 infantry weapons. Though there are quite a few photographs in the book, the most remarkable are the numerous and beautiful line drawings by the author. The weapons are presented chronologically and the result if a mammoth work on the subject.
Desafios, Encuentros y Duelos de Honor. Historia, Armasy Reglamentos

Author : Jose Maria Pelaez valle
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 9788489212459

Comment : A whole book on duels, its history, the techniques involved, the rules and the weapons. Although most of the book is dedicated to guns, the fencing section is quite extensive and early swords are well represented.

The drawings showing the evolution of sword guards, from simple to intricate and back to simple but all-covering is quite well done and food for thoughts.
Diamante cut-steel swords, when bling was IN

Author : Benoit Dupont
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-29601949-1-3

Comment : After writing a book on my own country's swords, I decided to present another subject which I am passionate about: cut-steel swords! This decoration technique charms whith both its intricacy and the so many various ways it was used on both smallswords and sabres.

This book gives some context on the wearing of such swords: regulations, fashion, making of, geo-political situation before going on to present more than 40 examples from Britain and abroad using stunning photography.
Documentaires Alpha : Armes Blanches et Armes Defensives

Author : Aldo G. Cimarelli, Clement Bosson
Book Type : Overview
ISBN : 68 0243 3 73 5

Comment : This book is part of a series of documentaries, each foccussing on a specific subject. As it is bound to happen, there is no room for in-depth analysis of as subject such as this. Apart from the 12 pages of text, the book is made up of well taken color pictures associated to fairly long captions.

A nice picture book, especially interesting for the part on armor photography.
Echoes of Glory : Arms and Equipment of the Confederacy

Author : Time-Life books
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 0-8094-8851-5

Comment : I am always perplexed to see glory associated with slaughter, but besides this difference in point of view, I can but appreciate the scope of these two volumes on the American civil war. You will find just about every type of equipment linked to the conflict represented here : flags, boots, guns, swords, canteens, uniforms ... The text is informative and an easy read.
Echoes of Glory : Arms and Equipment of the Union

Author : Time-Life books
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 0-8094-8855-8

Comment : I am always perplexed to see glory associated with slaughter, but besides this difference in point of view, I can but appreciate the scope of these two volumes on the American civil war. You will find just about every type of equipment linked to the conflict represented here : flags, boots, guns, swords, canteens, uniforms ... The text is informative and an easy read.
Edged Weapons : Sabres of the Habsburg Monarchy 16th-20th Century

Author : Petr Konopisky, Petr Moudry
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 80-900833-0-7

Comment : This book presents all models of edged weapons from the Habsburg monarchy. Though the title pages is in three languages (Polish, English and German), the captions are all in Polish. Only the caption's titles are in said three languages.

When you don't know any Polish, what you then get is the model's name and two very neat line drawing of the corresponding sword. This can still be quite useful to identify a sword.
Edged Weapons in Sweden

Author : Staffan Kinman
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-91-978012-5-6

Comment : This work started as an inventory of swords found in churches all over Sweden and the book reflects it. Given the beauty of Swedish swords found at auction and in museums, the state and quality of these swords was a disappointment to me. The text is both in Swedish and English. The book focuses on swords up to the middle of the 19th century and also presents some banners, signal instruments, spurs and a few pieces of armor. I believe this book to be the result of a huge task and it certainly contains a trove of information. It is the scope of weapons, and a few quirks at the level of photography which put it in another category from the gorgeous books that can be found nowadays.
Edged Weapons: A collector's guide

Author : Frederick J. Stephens
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 0-904978-18-4

Comment : Another introduction to the world of edged weapons, with a little (too much?) focus on German pieces. I particularly enjoyed one of the last chapter (Notes on collecting) with its down-to-earth advice as to how to proceed when starting-up.
Encyclopedia of European Historical Weapons

Author : Vladimir Dolinek, Jan Durdik
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 0600575381, 978-0600575382

Comment : This book gives an overview of both edged weapons and firearms found in Europe, foccussing on the period between the 15th and 19th century.

It should be considered as a detailed introduction to the subject, sporting more than 400 photographs, including those of remarkable and beautiful pieces.
Epees et Armes Blanches

Author : Michael D. Coe, Frederick Wilkinson, Anthony North & al
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 2-87628-955-5

Comment : A series of articles bundled together into a vast overview of edged weapons across time and place. A nice introduction to the study of arms, translated from English.
Espadas Espanolas, Militares y Civiles del Siglo XVI al XX

Author : Vincente Toledo Momparler
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-84-613-8582-9

Comment : A huge reference book. Each of the more than 520 swords, sabres and machetes is presented on its own page, with almost always several colour photographs to illustrate the description. Dimensions, weights, specific observations are all there and, behold, both military and civilian swords are covered.
European and American Arms

Author : Claude Blair
Book Type : Reference

Comment : Given the scope of this book, it can only be an introduction, but it is a qualitative and extensive one. 160 of the 650 photographs are of swords, the other of guns, daggers and staff weapons.

The last section of the book concentrates on regulation weapons and maker's marks using line drawings to illustrate both of these.
European edged weapons

Author : Terence Wise
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 0855241500, 978-0855241506

Comment : This is a quick overview of the subject. It can be used as an introduction to edged weapons, but will leave the more informed reader wishing for more.
European Swords and Daggers in the Tower of London

Author : Arthur Richard Dufty, Great Britain. Dept. of the Environment
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 0116705728, 978-0116705723

Comment : Described in the introduction as a 'picture book', this volume certainly lives up to its goal.

It includes about 350 large black and white pictures from the Tower's collection. The corresponding descriptions are succinct but contain only that which is complementary to the pictures. It also presents the marks found on the items, along with their lengths and inventory references.
European Weapons and Armour: From the Renaissance to the Industrial Revolution

Author : Ewart Oakeshott
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 184383720X, 978-1843837206

Comment : This book looks like the support for a course. Do not buy it expecting beautiful pictures of gorgeous swords, as there are none. What you will find, however, is a very complete text on both swords and armour (in an almost equal share) and some information on staff weapons.

The text is illustrated by an impressive number of line drawings, which prove to be an ideal tool to show the evolution of hilts. The four pages on swept hilts is particularly impressive.
Fine Arms from Tula

Author : Valentin Mavrodin, Valery Priymenko (phot.)
Book Type : Reference

Comment : Published by an Art Publishing firm, this book is mostly a compendium of beautiful pictures of arms, mostly firearms, from the great Tula craftsmen.
Frankfurter Blankwaffen und Militaria (1806-1866) Aus dem Bestand des Historischen Museums Frankfurt am Main

Author : Volker Lobner, Tilman Lombard
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 9783873903456

Comment : This very specific book in GErman presents 38 swords and sabers from both the museum's collection and private collection in order to give an overview of the types of swords worn by the army of Frankfurt and their variations.

The book also focuses on the army's organization, its forts and campaigns, presenting official documents and period drawings from the French occupation to the integration of the Free City into the kingdom of Prussia, in 1866.

On the downside, the book is quite expensive and some of the pictures have been taken in difficult conditions.
Fuhrer durch die Sammlungen

Author : Deutsches Klingenmuseum Solingen
Book Type : Museum Guide
ISBN : 3-7927-1689-5

Comment : This is simply the museum's guide. It presents each room and key items along with a little context.

A perfect read while visiting or as an introduction to the collections.

In German, dirt cheap !
Gazette des armes, Les armes de nos grands-peres, 1865-1927. Merveilles des vieux catalogues

Author : Directed by Jean-Rene Clergeau
Book Type : Reference

Comment : These are commented reprints from mail-order catalogues which included arms among their wares. It gives an insight as to what was available at the time and can help to spot some reproductions created in the 19th and 20th centuries, among with the corresponding prices.

Unfortunately, not all reprints contain reference to the year the orginal catalog was issued.
German Swords and Sword Makers : Edged Weapon Makers form the 14th to the 20th Centuries

Author : Richard H. Bezdek
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-1-58160-057-5

Comment : This is really a reference book and was never meant to be read from cover to cover. It contains alphabetically ordered lists of sword makers, armourers and even rulers from both Germany and Austria. Early swordmaking manufactories are described as are maker''s marks. The book also offers a small photo section, enhanced by a series of line drawings.

All in all, an impressive compilation of useful information.
German Swords XVIII-XX Century

Author : Janusz Jaroslawski
Book Type : Exhibition catalogue
ISBN : 978-83-937680-3-5

Comment : This book presents part of Janusz Jaroslawski sword collection. The 50 swords shown are all German (either Empire, Republic or 3rd Reich). The author wrote this with the counsel of an edged weapons expert (Wlodzimierz Kwasniewics). This is not a complete representation of sword models available in Germany during this period and the author himself signals that there is but one sword from the 18th century in the series. I therefore do not include it in the Reference category.
Photography by the author is extremely good, varied and coherent as a set. The text is very detailed.
Heirloom of Steel: The Collection of Oriental and Asian Arms and Armor in Znojmo Museum (The Czech Republic)

Author : Dr. Manouchehr Moshtagh Khorasani
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 978-80-86974-26-2

Comment : A beautiful & complete catalogue of arms presenting Ottoman, Caucasian, Arabian, African, Persian, Indian, Chinese, Indonesian, Japanese and central Asian arms.

The focus lies heavily on edged weapons, but some armor, shields and firearms are to be found, mostly in the Ottoman (firearms) and Japanese (all of the above) sections.
Hieb und Stich-Waffen

Author : Eduard Wagner
Book Type : Reference

Comment : A translation from the Czech of a more reasonable, and later (1975), version of Eduard Wagner's 1967 Cut and Thrust weapons. The book is now a pocket version and has less text and more drawings.

By our standards, it is to be considered an introduction to the subject of edged weapons.
Historishe Waffen

Author : V. Dolinek, J. Durdik
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 3-7684-1436-1

Comment : This book is dedicated to the history of weapons in Europe. A bit more than half of the pages concern firearms, while the other can be seen as an introduction to the different types of swords used between the 15th and the 19th centuries. All in all, a consequent text, with 400+ photos of medium to small format.
Imperial German Edged Weaponry : Volume One : Army and Cavalry

Author : Thomas M. Johnson, LTC (Ret.), with Victor Diehl & Thomas Wittmann
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-0-7643-2934-0

Comment : This series fits between reference books and collection catalogs. There is little text, but a myriad big format quality pictures of both swords and people wearing them. What is not clear to me is the completeness of the coverage.
Imperial German Edged Weaponry : Volume Three : Automobile and Aero Corps, Government and Civilian, Hunting - Colonial - Kinder

Author : Thomas M. Johnson, LTC (Ret.), with Victor Diehl & Thomas Wittmann
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-0-7643-2936-4

Comment : This series fits between reference books and collection catalogs. There is little text, but a myriad big format quality pictures of both swords and people wearing them. What is not clear to me is the completeness of the coverage.
Imperial German Edged Weaponry : Volume Two : Naval Dirks and Sabers

Author : Thomas M. Johnson, LTC (Ret.), with Victor Diehl & Thomas Wittmann
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-0-7643-2935-7

Comment : This series fits between reference books and collection catalogs. There is little text, but a myriad big format quality pictures of both swords and people wearing them. What is not clear to me is the completeness of the coverage.
Infanterie-offizierdegen 1889 und varianten

Author : Reiner Herrmann and Peter Hartmann
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 3613029553, 978-3613029552

Comment : This is a book in German that I was able to read even though I do not known any German. Of course, Dutch helped, but the book itself if very well structured and all the terminology well explained at the beginning of the book, so you can build on that. The subject is quite specific, and treated in depth. The book presents all variations of this sword, along with detailed descriptions and period pictures. There does not seem to be anything left to add. I was quite keen on this type of sword, until I had one in my hands, that is. They are a lot lighter than I expected, given the pallasch-like look, and this was not to my taste. Still, they sometimes sport gorgeous blades.
J. C. Hawkshaw collection

Author : Henry L. Joly
Book Type : Collection Catalogue

Comment : The absolute collection catalogue !!

It presents in full detail the very impressive collection of Japanes sword mounts of J.C. Hawkshaw. The first edition depicted here was limited to 300 numbered copies illustrated with 50 collotype plates from Joly's photographs. Each plate shows multiple sword-mounts that are numbered on a tissue overlay. The extend of the collection is simply stagerring.
Kostbare blankwaffen aus dem deutschen klingenmuseum Solingen

Author : Heinz R. Uhlemann
Book Type : Collection Catalogue

Comment : Another great collection, another beautiful catalog full of black and white photographs and a single color one of a magnificent British smallsword.
L'Armamento Della Cavalleria Napoleonica

Author : Tiziano Tonelli
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 88-87372-16-0

Comment : This book presents both swords and guns from the Italian and Napolitan parts of the then French Empire. For some reason, picture captions are in both Italian and French, the rest of the text in Italian only.

The book is neat and well printed, the cover is sturdy but shows scratches and fingermarks.
L'arme blanche de guerre francaise au XVIIIeme siecle

Author : Capitaine Maurice Bottet
Book Type : Reference

Comment : Who does not want to know what a mousquetaire's sword looked like ?

This is a qualitative 1967 reprint of a 1910 book. The subject is quite specific and the few plates are there to help understand the complex text stemming from an impressive knowledge of the subject.
L'armee belge dans la Grande Guerre: L'armement portatif reglementaire

Author : Pierre Lierneux (Red.), Eddy Boomputte, Peter Cochez, Roger Lothaire, Pierre Lierneux, Kris Michiels, Kevin Snelders, Pa
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-3-902526-84-7

Comment : A second huge book, which now includes military sabres and bayonets along with firearms and mortars.
L'armee belge dans la Grande Guerre: Uniformes et equipements

Author : Pierre Lierneux (Red.), Ilse Bogaerts, Emilie Gaillard, Dominique Henrard, Philippe Jacquij
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-3-902526-73-1

Comment : A huge book, yet extremely precise on all subjects under study. I am waiting impatiently for the next volume, which should focus on weapons. Even while not covering weapons, it was certainly worth a look to me, if only for all the period pictures it contains.
L'Art des Choses : Armes Occidentales

Author : Alfred P. Zeller
Book Type : Overview

Comment : A relatively basic introductory book with some nice, small format color photographs. A handy format to carry with you.
L'encyclopedie Diderot et d'Alembert, fabrique des armes, escrime

Author : Denis Diderot, Jean Le Rond d'Alembert
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 9-782905-388773

Comment : This is a reprint of part of the famous French encyclopedia which was originally printed between 1751 to 1772. The quality of the printing is very good, which is not always the case in these instances.
L'Histoire des Armes de la Gendarmerie

Author : Jean Huon, Jean-Claude Schlinger
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 2-7030-0298-X

Comment : This book mostly centres on firearms and the edged weapons part, though complete in terms of descriptions, is sometimes lacking in pictures. Its scope, however, is quite impressive as it spans a period from about 1640 to the present day. As an aside, given the subject we are interested in here, the only cut-steel sword presented in this book is the court sword of Marechal Moncey (1802-1814), and its description states that it has a silver hilt.
La collection d'armes de l'empereur de Russie Alexandre II en 1869

Author : Iaroslav Lebedynsky
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 2-86551-019-0

Comment : This is a reprint of a 1869 catalog from the arsenal at Tsarskoie-Selo.

The color plates are copies of period drawings and still very precise. The full Russian text is also printed in French. The book does not only reference swords, but also armor, guns, crossbows and even canon. It is also interesting insofar as it shows how eclectic a collection could be, about 150 years ago.
La formation historique de l'armee belge (1830-1853). Les officiers etrangers au service de la Belgique

Author : Jacques-Robert Leconte
Book Type : History

Comment : Upon its independence, Belgium was in great need of capable officers, and these could not all be found among the Belgian population. Self-proclaimed officers included some capable men but were sometimes just prison bait or incompetent. It is therefore no surprise that French and Polish citizens were nominated in high office in the Belgian Army.

This book presents non only the context of these early years, but describes some of these men and their achievements.
La Legion d'honneur et les Corses, De sa creation au Second Empire

Author : Musee national de la famille Bonaparte, a Ajaccio
Book Type : Exposition Catalog
ISBN : 978-2-7118-5427-1

Comment : A well made, 80 pages long, catalog, which is both intersting and pleasing to the eye.

It certainly foccuses on the Legion of Honor and its Corsican recipients, but also contains a picture of General Jean-Jacques Abbatucci's saber and, my favourite, of Jacques-Pierre Abbatucci's court sword from his time as Minister of Justice for Napoleon III.
La manufacture d'armes blanches du Klingenthal

Author : Association pour la Sauvegarde du Klingenthal
Book Type : History
ISBN : 9782917909126

Comment : This book reviews the impact of the making of edged weapons in the village and valley of Klingenthal. It shows the buildings, describes the functioning of the manufacture, presents the tools of the trade and some of the key figures through the ages.

It is very nice little book and really made me want to go there and see it all. In particular, it contains a picture from the museum, showing steel blades of different, beautiful colors obtained by 'simply' heating the blades.
La premiere Manufacture Royale d'Armes Blanches en France

Author : Marc Adolf & l'Association pour la Sauvegarde du Klingenthal
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 9-782955-817018

Comment : This book does not focus on swords but on the manufacture itself, explaining the choice of location, the lay of the buildings, the techniques and output, be it swords, armor, farmer's tools or bayonets.

It contains both very specific technical indications and color pictures of beautiful swords, including incredibly detailed engraving by masters of the art.
Lames courbes dans le temps et dans l'espace

Author : Jean Lozes
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-270-300-432-5

Comment : An interesting and well documented study on similarities between edged weapons from all around the world. The approach is original and the result is a pleasing volume on sabres and daggers.
Le katana

Author : Gilles Bongrain
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 2-7030-0236-X

Comment : This book is really specific to the katana and barely mentions other japanese sword types. However, it treats just about everything I could think of about the katana itself. The context of its use, its making, handling, cleaning, testing, maintenance, ... all is there for the reader to reap, with beautiful color photographs showing the way.
Le musee Napoleon de la Pommerie, une collection familiale

Author : Baudoin-Napoleon de Witt
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 9-82912-671332

Comment : This is the catalog to the collection held in a small but qualititavely very impressive museum containing heirlooms of the Napoleon family and managed by the descendands themselves.

In terms of swords, as in other categories, the number of pieces is limited but the quality and association to napoleonic figures make the difference. In particular, the ivory-grip smallsword given to Jerome Napoleon in 1810 by Frederic I of Wurtemberg is amazing.
Les armes blanches - Encyclopedie illustree

Author : Jan Sach, traduction de Jean-Pierre Dauliac
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 2-7000-1847-8

Comment : A very nice picture book, with quality photography. The arms, taken from around 1450 to 1900 are arranged per period and the captions informative.
Les armes blanches de la Revolution

Author : Jean-Pierre Martin
Book Type : Reference

Comment : A comprehensive work on the subjet, the amount of information bellies its size. The text is very informative and supported by a large number of black and white photographs.

It describes the regulation swords of the period, but also shows an impressive number of swords which were variations made in a time where there was an urgent need of weapons to defend the frontiers of France and expedience was the order of the day. That most of these are intricate and beautiful is a wonder probably linked to choices in conservation.
Les armes de la royale

Author : D. Casanova, J.B. Bastie
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 2865510174

Comment : This book presents the weapons of the French marine, wether guns or edged weapons. The text and photographs, except 6 color pages, are all in blue and white. Among the numerous pistols and guns, you can find some information on sabres, dirks and swords.
Les armes de recompense aux veterans des armees de l'ouest

Author : Pierre Greau, Pierre Leroy
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 341-169-118-000-39

Comment : A book on a very specific subject, as it treats only of the giving by Louis XVIII of guns, smallswords and sabres to his most loyal subjects who fought for the monarchy agains the revolutionary forces between 1793 and 1800.

The sabres, in particular, which are 'refurbished' mousquetaire's sabres from the Restauration period, are just gorgeous.
Les baionnettes reglementaires francaises

Author : J.P. Pitous
Book Type : Reference

Comment : Not my cup of tea, but a good reference book on French bayonets, full of clear diagrams and a few photographs.
Les Canons de l'Elegance

Author : Musee de l'Armee - Invalides
Book Type : Exposition Catalog
ISBN : 978-2-87844-271-7

Comment : A beautiful catalogue for the eponymous exhibition, including extremely well made photographs of some of the most exceptional pieces in the museum's great collection
Les epees portees en France des origines a nos jours

Author : Jean Lhoste
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-2865510351

Comment : A great reference book on all French swords. A mammoth work spanning an impressive number of swords, types and periods.
Les hussards et la France

Author : Musee de l'armee, Paris
Book Type : Exhibition catalogue
ISBN : 2-87027-500-5

Comment : The hussards have an important aura in French military history. This book explains how such a corps came to be created and how it influenced the French campaign, whether royal, imperial or republican.

A review of their different uniforms is also offered, but there is very little information on edged weapons (6 pages in total).
Les poignards de marine

Author : Jean Lhoste, Patrick Resek, Jean Tonnerre
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 2-86551-054-9

Comment : 60 pages on French marine dirks and about 60 more on marine dirks from the rest of the world, all organised by country first, then per shape. A very good source to identify an unknown dirk.
Les Sabres des Hussards. L'histoire des sabres des hussards de Louis XIV a nos jours.

Author : Michel Petard
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 2-912430-19-9

Comment : Michel Petard is known for his precise drawings, but this book is full of both period drawings and color photographs. Although the color balance of some pictures is just wrong, most pictures show off these impressive sabres quite well.

We are talking serious steel, here,but there are also some very decorated officer's sabres on display.
Les Sabres portes par l'armee francaise

Author : Jean Lhoste
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-2865510481

Comment : A very nice reference book on French swords presenting a huge number of different items.
Les soldats de Leopold Ier et Leopold II

Author : Guy Derie, John Pacco
Book Type : Reference

Comment : There are so few books on the Belgian army that any such book deserves my attention. This tome is mostly aimed at uniformology enthusiasts, but some little information on the attribution of swords and sabers can be gleaned along the way.

The drawings are beautifully executed and you can but be both impressed and amazed at the colors and complexity of 19th century uniforms.
Maces, war-hammers and topors from Hungarian collections

Author : Tibor S. Kovacs
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 978-963-9987-16-6

Comment : ?? What's a topor ?? This is one of the things this book will teach you.

Spoiler alert: It's a combination weapon war axe + firearm + (eventually) a knife.

Outstanding pieces from both the Hungarian National Museum and private collections are beautifully photographed and described in details. The book focuses on maces, but presents quite a few war hammers and a series of surprising topors.

And the book is in English, giving us, poor non-Hungarian speaking sword enthusiasts a peek into this area of expertise.
Masterpieces of European Arms and Armour in the Wallace Collection Complete Digital Catalogue + Book

Author : Tobias Capwell, David Edge & Jeremy Warren
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 978 0 900785 93 1

Comment : WOW !!
This book is simply stunning, with great pictures and quality text. It is a thing of beauty in itself, but it takes an additional dimension when you take in the riches of the contents of the USB stick. Items in the collection are richly documented and described through myriad pictures and the corresponding quotes from the different collection catalogs, starting from 1909.

Given the scope and quality of the collection itself, this is a book you will never regret buying.
Meisterwerke der Hofjagd- un Rustkammer

Author : Christian Beaufort-Spontin, Matthias Pfaffenbichler, Sabine Haag
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 9-783990-200483

Comment : A small-format book of 270 pages, part of an impressive collection of a dozen books on some of the masterpieces of the Kunsthistorische museum of Vienna, it foccuses on arms and armor.

The presentation and photography are both superb, the text precise and informative.

I can only dream that such an effort be made to illustrate the whole collection as this is but the top of the iceberg.
Menschen und Klingen: Geschichte und Geschichten

Author : Hanns U. Haedeke
Book Type :
ISBN : 3-9803196-0-2

Comment : The title of this book is a play on words linking history & stories.

It presents specific objects (either weapons or pieces of cutlery) and links them to a specific person or period in time, giving them context and helping the reader to better understand their specificities.

Subjects include early pieces of cutlery, kingly presents and the famous 'running wolf' mark.
Militaria Belgica, Annales d'uniformologie et d'histoire militaire

Author :
Book Type : Periodical

Comment : This is one number of this journal, which is still being issued today and which presents very specialized articles on subject ranging from fortifications to specific gun amunition types, via swords, armored cars, decorations, uniforms and biographies. This 1999-2000 issues contains a very precise article by Freddy Piron on Belgian regulation cavalry swords.
Monographies de l'arme blanche (1789-1870) et de l'arme a feu portatives (1718-1900) des armees francaises de terre et de mer

Author : Maurice Bottet
Book Type : Reference

Comment : This book dates from 1959 and, while it offers nothing in terms of photography, is enriched with fold out pages full of detailed drawings of the regulation swords and guns it describes in detail.

A seminal text in the study of French arms.
Naval Swords. British and American Edged Weapons 1660-1815

Author : P.G.W.Annis
Book Type : Reference

Comment : A small book with a good overview of the subject, including some Lloyd's Patriotic Fund swords and the odd smallsword.
Nicolas Boutet et la Manufacture de Versailles

Author : Capitaine Maurice Bottet
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 9-782733-900918

Comment : This is a reprint of a 1903 book presenting the reasons for the foundation of the famed Manufacture, its output, and its great director, Nicolas-Noel Boutet who is thought of as one of the best French swordmaker ever.

The color and black and white plates present a series of exclusive swords created for the most important figures of the Revolution and Empire and as princely, imperial or royal gifts.
Officer Swords of the German Navy 1806-1945

Author : Claus P Stefanski, Dirk Stefanski
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 0-7643-1674-5

Comment : This is a very complete book on this specific subject. It mixes period pictures with extensive item descriptions and photographs.

Photographic quality is quite good, with a few unfortunate exceptions.
Parade: Klingen und Uniformen fur den grossen Auftritt

Author : Deutsche Klingenmuseum Solingen
Book Type : Exhibition Catalogue
ISBN : 978-3-930315-37

Comment : The guide to a daring exhibition, linking key edged weapons from the collection to art school drawings of imaginary uniforms.
Polska Bron

Author : Andrzej Nadolski
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 83-04-00865-3

Comment : This is the original Polish version of this book, which has since been translated to English under the title 'Polish Arms - Side Arms'.

I really should buy the English version. Lacking any knowledge of Polish, the extensive text is lost on me, but the illustrations themselves are numerous and the few color pictures show some very beautiful Polish sabers.
Prunkwaffen, waffen und rustungen aus dem historischen museum Dresden

Author : Johannes Schobel
Book Type : Collection Catalogue

Comment : This book presents pieces of armor, edged weapons, hunting swords and guns from the Dresden museum. The full page photographs are a big plus, some of them being in color. The description are completed by a introductory text for each section of the book.

The 99 edged weapons, most of them swords, are magnificent.
Ragyog as aranytol, voros a vertol

Author : Szathmary Tibor
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 978-615-01-0571-0

Comment : Outside of an introduction regarding origin of this magnificent collection and the plunder of cultural goods from Hungary by different conquerors, this book is totally in Hungarian.

So, unless you can read it or want to spend more time than his healthy with a translator app, you will be left with a series of excellent pictures of exceptional firearm, maps, and edged weapons, but bereft of the context information which seems to have been thoughtfully provided for quite a few of these pieces.

Time to learn a new language ?
Rapiers : An Illustrated Reference Guide to the Rapiers of the 16th and 17th Centuries and their Companions

Author : Eric Valentine
Book Type : Reference

Comment : This book presents 42 rapiers and several left-hand daggers, all at one time part of the author's collection. The black and white illustrations focus on the hilts and pommels. Both approximate dates and detailed measurements are given for each item.
Russian Swords ... Collections Catalogue

Author : Janusz Jaroslawski
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 978-83-937680-8-0

Comment : This book presents part of Janusz Jaroslawski sword collection. The 31 swords and 6 bayonets are all Russian. Again, the author wrote this with the counsel of an edged weapons expert (Wlodzimierz Kwasniewics). This is clearly presented as a collection catalog and is not meant to be an overview of Russian swords through the ages.

Photography by the author is extremely good, varied and coherent as a set. The text is very detailed and will be useful to collectors. It includes a list of marks found on Zlatoust weapons during the 1820-1946 period.
Sabres francais 1830-1870. Du coq a l'aigle Tome 1

Author : Jean Ondry
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-2-703004-49-3

Comment : The sequel of Jean Ondry's Restauration opus is split into two tomes, presenting both regulation and non regulation sabres of the 1830-1870 period. Again, not only is the text clear and precise but the sabers shown are real beauties !

As for the Restauration book, both sabres created within the timeframe and those still in use at the time are presented, which make for some repetition when read one after the other, but allows each of them to stand on its own.
Sabres francais 1830-1870. Du coq a l'aigle Tome 2

Author : Jean Ondry
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-2-703004-56-1

Comment : The sequel of Jean Ondry's Restauration opus is split into two tomes, presenting both regulation and non regulation sabres of the 1830-1870 period. Again, not only is the text clear and precise but the sabers shown are real beauties !

As for the Restauration book, both sabres created within the timeframe and those still in use at the time are presented, which make for some repetition when read one after the other, but allows each of them to stand on its own.
Sabres francais de la Restauration 1814-1830

Author : Jean Ondry
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-2-703004-40-0

Comment : This lavishly illustrated details all the regulation sabres introduced during the French Restauration or introduced earlier but still in use at the time.

The author's knowledge and the research effort are both impressive.
Sabres Francais de la Troisieme Republique

Author : Jean Ondry
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 979-1028300814

Comment : This is a very recent book (Oct 2015), which focuses on a subject which was not yet successfully treated. The book is well structured and very detailed, with lots of beautiful color pictures of swords, mixed with period pictures.

As an aside, the author also uses this book to get even with some institutions which did not live up to his expectations.
Schweizer Griffwaffen des 18. und 19. Jahrhunderts

Author : Schweizerischen Landesmuseum
Book Type : Collection Catalogue

Comment : A small booklet of only 30 pages, including 16 pages of text, this gives a limited but welcome insight into the world of Swiss swords.
Scottish Swords from the Battlefield at Culloden

Author : Lord Archibald Campbell, edited and annotated by E. Andrew Mowbray
Book Type : Essay
ISBN : 0917218043, 978-0917218040

Comment : It is difficult to find a more specific subject than that treated in this book. The author is solely concerned by a series of sword blades from a specific 18th century battle.

The manner in which these sword blades came to be studied is a savory story in itself.
Slave sveta

Author : Wojciech Zablocki
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-80-87057-27-8

Comment : Bought during a trip to Tchekia, this is actually the translation of a Polish book on sabres 'from around the world'. In fact, it presents black and white drawings of 155 sabres, of which 97 are of Polish origin.

The good news is that these representation include the name of the museum where they can be found along with measurements and blade profiles.
Small-Swords and Military Swords, their development and dating, from the middle of the seventeenth century to the early nineteenth century

Author : A.V.B. Norman
Book Type : Reference

Comment : A twenty-four pages booklet, it nevertheless contains a text which is very dense in terms of information, along with a beautiful series of large black and white plates. The quality of both text and references is impressive.
Solinger Handwerkszeichen - Die Zeichen der Messermacher-Rolle von 1684 und ihre Besitzfolge bis 1875

Author : Erika Schlesinger
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 3-87096-144-9

Comment : A compilation of Solingen craftsmen marks linked to knife making.
Sous l'egide de Mars, armures des princes d'Europe

Author : Musee de l'Armee, Paris
Book Type : Exhibition catalogue
ISBN : 9-782350-391069

Comment : This exposition foccused on the art of French armour makers and presents numerous period pieces along with preliminary drawings and drawrings which have been a source of inspiration to these craftsmen.
The photograpy, like the pieces themselves, are splendid and the text is very informative. There are but a few swords in this book, but they are stunning!
Splendeur de l'armurerie hongroise

Author : Europalia 99 Hungaria
Book Type : Exhibition catalogue
ISBN : 2-503-50930-4

Comment : It's all in the title. The objects shown in this exhibition are splendid works in steel, silver and gold. The full-page color pictures do them justice and the descriptions are extremely precise. There is not much text in the manner of introduction but turning each page is a pleasure.
Stahl, Glanz, Gold, Zlatouster prunk-klingen aus der zarenzeit

Author : Alexander Korolkow, Juri A. Miller
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 3-87023-166-1

Comment : My German being almost inexistant, yet better than my Russian, I was thrilled to find this translation. If you are not afraid of bling, this is a book for you. It presents Zlatoust-made swords from the Ermitage collection.

Although there are some more common pieces, most sabres are incredibly rich and detailed. The color pictures are gorgeous and well worth buying the book by themselves.
Steel and Heart: A thousand years of weaponry.

Author : Csorge Csaba -Fekete Gyorgy - Strohner Ferenc
Book Type : Exhibition Catalogue
ISBN : 978-963-9398-10-8

Comment : The text of this book is printed in both Hungarian and English and as such, makes this an excellent way to promote Hungarian arms abroad.

The catalogue includes 450 pieces, mostly edged weapons, which were presented in a 2019 exhibition at the Hungarian National Museum. Descriptions are short but to the point, lengths are included. The introduction focuses on the importance of collecting artifacts and on the plunder of said artifacts from Hungary during different stages of its convoluted history.
Steel and Magic, Edged Weapons of the Malay Archipelago

Author : Udo Kloubert
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-3947313068

Comment : This books does a great job of showing the diversity of edged weapons originating from this region, including pieces from Brunei, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines.

There is real beauty in some of these blades and loads of knowledge within those pages. I am no expert in this domain but would warmly recommend this as a great book to start any serious study on the subject as it is well structured and has so much to offer.
Storia Dell'Arma Bianca Italiana, da Waterloo al nuovo millennio

Author : Cesare Calamandrei
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-88-253-0199-1

Comment : A mammoth work which includes not only sabres, daggers and swords, but treats both military and civilian arms. The photographs and drawings are numerous and well presented in a way that avoids the simple repetition of so many other specialist books.
Swedish Weaponry Since 1630

Author : Bengt M. Holmquist and Birger Gripstad
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 9138071754, 978-9138071755

Comment : This is not only a reference book on weapons of the Swedish Army (including swords, guns, cannon and others), but it also relates the evolution of the Swedish army in relation to political evolution of the land.

It is very complete and an interesting read.
Swhwert, Degen, Sabel

Author : Gerhard Seifert
Book Type : Reference

Comment : As can be seen right away from both the scope of this book and its format (80 A5 pages) this is a brief intoduction to the world of swords. One black and white photo and half a page of text per sword type is all you get,

The chronological overview of all types of swords on four pages is a bold but interesting exercise.
Sword, Lance and Bayonet

Author : Charles ffoulkes, E.C. Hopkinson
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : Library of Congress 67-18415

Comment : This 1938 book is a knowledgeable account of edged weapons production and use in Great-Britain. Given the date of its publishing, no-one will be surprised at the lack of photographs, 40 models being presented on two middle-sized pages.
Swords and Daggers

Author : Frederick Wilkinson, Richard Clay
Book Type : Reference

Comment : A small book with a huge number of black and white photographs, spanning the entire history of swords and daggers, but written by a connoisseur as an introduction to collectors.
Swords and Sabers of the United States Army, 1867-1918

Author : Dusan P. Farrington
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 1931464707, 978-1931464703

Comment : I was both surprised and very impressed by this book.

If you pay a bit more attention than I did, you will expect this 300+ pages book, being true to its full title, to present not hundreds, but dozens of swords and sabers in incredible detail (incl. b&w photos). This is clearly a scholar's work and the amount of information from primary sources contained in this book is simply amazing. Watch out, the only color pictures are those on the book's front and back covers.
Swords and Sword Makers of England and Scotland

Author : Richard H. Bezdek
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 1581606737, 978-1581606737

Comment : This is really a reference book and was, never meant to be read from cover to cover. It contains alphabetically ordered lists of sword makers, cutlers, dealers, merchants, outfitters, armourers and even rulers from both Britain and Scotland. Early swordmaking communities are described as are maker's marks. The book also offers a huge photo section of more than 450 black and white hilt and sword pictures. As a bonus, it includes several pages from Matthew Boulton's Soho factory pattern book (ca. 1762).

In total, a huge compilation of data particularly useful in dating swords.
Swords and Swordsmen

Author : Mikes Loades
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-1-52670-646-1

Comment : Using specific swords as a means to present both sword evolution and the corres-ponding historical period, this book has an edge on most other edged weapons books: it does not read like a lecture or a catalogue!
Swords from Public Collections in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania: With New Information Regarding Swordmakers of the Philadelphia Area

Author : Bruce S. Bazelon
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 0917218264, 978-0917218262

Comment : This book is based on the fact that institutions sometimes hold in storage some of their most beautiful pieces and therefore presents 63 exceptional swords, mostly American presentation swords, from Pennsylvanian museums, including pieces that are not presently on display. It also includes information on recipients.

A specific section foccusses on swordmakers and, when possible, exemplifies their production with a given piece.
Swords of the British army. The regulation patterns 1788 to 1914. Revised edition.

Author : Brian Robson
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 1-845749-17-0

Comment : An detailed overview of all regulation British swords of the period, with several pictures per chapter, all but 6 in black and white. This book also contains information of sword marks.
Szabel nam nie zabraknie...Bron biala zolnierza polskiego z XVIII-XX wieku opis ksiazki

Author : Pawel Komorowski
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 8393251834, 9788393251834

Comment : A very good presentation of sabers used by the Polish army since the 18th century. This includes Polish, but also English, French, Austrian, Prussian and Russian sabers. It also contains a lot of period pictures of soldiers wearing sabers.
This book is often referenced as being paperback and in Polish, but the one I have, sporting the second ISBN, is hardback and, more importantly, contains a translation to English of the whole text !! Given my non-existent Polish, this is a real treat. Thank you, Mr Komorowski and Malgorzata Mozdzynska-Nawotka.
The American eagle-pommel sword, the early years 1794-1830

Author : E. Andrew Mowbray
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 0-917218-74-4

Comment : An impressive compilation of different models of this iconic swords, from the most basic examples to the more complex realisations. An eye-opener for me as I never thought there was such variety to be found within this very specific group of swords.

The numerous pictures are, unfortunatelly, all in black and white, jacket excepted.
The American fraternal sword, an illustrated reference guide

Author : John D. Hamilton, Joseph Marino and James Kaplan
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 1-931464-38-3

Comment : An illustrated guide, indeed. Aside from a comprehensive text on the historical background, different associations, manufacturers and techniques, we are offered pages after pages of illustrations (900+) of the various swords.

An eye-opener to the diversity of these swords and a great resource for identifying them!
The American Sword 1775-1945

Author : Harold Leslie Peterson, Stephen V. Grancsay
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 9-781258-507213

Comment : This is a reprint of a 1953 book. It contains 186 swords descriptions, each with a single small fuzy picture. It spans enlisted men's, officer's, presentation & silver hilted swords.
The Ames sword company catalog

Author : introduction by Stuart C. Mowbray
Book Type : Commercial catalogue
ISBN : 1-931464-06-5

Comment : A reprint of an original 19th century catalog, including 541 swords with description and period prices. This relativelly small format book does not show as much detail as the WKC catalog reprints, but the impressive number of swords and other articles are nevertheless clearly recognisable.
THE BRITISH CAVALRY SWORD 1788 1912, Some New Perspectives

Author : Richard Dellar
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-0-9926449-0-1

Comment : A gorgeous book which covers the subject impeccably. Mr. Dellar's book presents an impressive amount of research in a way that is both rigorous and, sometimes, entertaining. A must have for any British sword enthusiast and a wonderful read even for people like me, whose interest lie elsewhere.

From a photographer's point of view, perfection lies just a few corrections away.
THE BRITISH CAVALRY SWORD 1788 1912 Companion Volume

Author : Richard Dellar
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-0-9926449-1-8

Comment : A light appendix to the impressive volume Richard Dellar wrote in 2013, it contains updates and extension on the same subject. The mix between technical data and biographical information is very pleasing.

Some pictures, again, could do with a better color balance.
The Noble Art of the Sword ... Fashion and Fencing in Renaissance Europe 1520-1630

Author : Tobias Capwell & Al
Book Type : Essays
ISBN : 978 0 900785 43 6

Comment : Again, a beautiful book by Tobias Capwell, with essays from seven other authors. This volume focuses on the sword as fashion accessory and on fencing technique, books and masters. The swords shown in this book are simply exceptional.

I am looking forward to more of this kind of work from The Wallace Collection.
The price guide to antique edged weapons

Author : Leslie Southwick
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 0-90202894-4

Comment : Apart from a lexicon, this is just as announced: a compendium of photographs with succint descriptions and an indication of prices as seen in 1982. The scope of the book is huge and the prices would make any collector dream to golden times!
The Rapier and Small-Sword 1460-1820

Author : A.V.B. Norman
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-1-905074-99-0

Comment : You will find this book referenced by all serious, and sometimes less serious, works on the subject. The copy I have is a re-print by the A.V.B. Norman Research Trust and the paperback cover leaves a little to be desired. The contents, on the other hand, are really impressive. I would think that you could find anything you want on small-swords in this book, provided you are not interested in examples dating from after 1820, like I am ;-)

The book offers lots of clues on dating swords based on pommels, guards and hilts and a whole chapter on decoration techniques.
The Small-sword in England, its History, its Forms, its Makers, and its Masters

Author : J.D. Aylward
Book Type : Reference

Comment : This book not only contains a good section on sword identification, including the presentation of silver hilt characteristics to date a sword, it also focuses on the people who made, sold and used swords, thus giving us indications on the context of the creation and use of these beautiful objects.
The Turkish Chamber: Oriental Splendour in the Dresden Armoury

Author : Staaatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 978-3-422-6914-5

Comment : Some masterpieces from the incredibly rich collection at Dresden. A pleasure to read given the level of the pieces shown, the pictures, and the text, which goes beyond description.
Tony North: Arms and Armour, A memorial volume of his collected articles

Author : D. Williams and E. Turner
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-1-907417-62-7

Comment : Several detailed articles on subjects pertaining to arms and armours by an institution (Anthony North) within an institution (The Victoria and Albert Museum), including one on a cut-steel sword thought to have been made in Woodstock.
Treasures from the Tower of London

Author : A.V.B. Norman and G.M. Wilson
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 0 946009 00 7, 0 946009 01 5

Comment : This is the catalogue from an exhibition of items from the tower of London. The exhibition was held in London, Ontario and Cincinnati and features a larger panel of different items.

The catalogue includes 23 color pictures, 111 black and white pictures, all of great quality. On top of this, you will find extensive and qualitative captions, along with a few pages on the Armouries's history and on the history of arms and armour.
Tsuba, la collection des gardes de sabres japonais des musees royaux d'art et d'histoire

Author : Musees royaux d'art et d'histoire, Bruxelles
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : D1994-0550-20

Comment : A small booklet showing about 150 tsuba guards from the beautiful collection held at the royal museum of art and history in Brussels.
Victoria and Albert Museum: Swords and Daggers

Author : Johan Hayward
Book Type : Collection Catalogue
ISBN : 11-290077-1

Comment : This small booklet contains 11 pages of text and 45 black and white plates, mostly of rapiers and smallswords chosen for the high level of crafstmanship required for their realisation.
Weyersberg Kirschbaum & Cie., Solingen : Catalogue of 1892

Author : Weyersberg Kirschbaum & Cie
Book Type : Commercial catalogue
ISBN : 0-046696-26-8

Comment : This is the reprint of an original WKC catalogue from 1892 or 1893. This iconic fabric was founded in 1883 and still exists today. The prints are wonderfully executed and the scope of the items available from the company impressive.

WKC was creating and shipping swords the world over, so this catalog is not limited to German items and neither is it limited to swords, but to a variety of edged weapons and instruments including knives, axes, pickaxes, machetes, ...
Weyersberg Kirschbaum & Cie., Solingen : Catalogue of around 1900

Author : Weyersberg Kirschbaum & Cie
Book Type : Commercial catalogue

Comment : This is the reprint of an original WKC catalogue from around 1900. Its more than 250 beautiful drawings show the swords, cutlasses and bayonets produced by the company for use in Germany at the time. The majority of these weapons are military models, some were meant for firefighters or members of the administration. Some drawings represent blade etching with beautiful detail.

The large format is perfect for this book, but the printing, though precise, does not do justice to the original drawings.
With drawn sword, Austro-Hungarian edged weapons 1848 - 1918

Author : Dr. M. Christian Ortner, Erich Artlieb
Book Type : Reference
ISBN : 978-3-9501642-3-7

Comment : A very good reference book on Austro-Hungarian swords, including an impressive number of pictures and lots of facts about the swords themselves, but also about the corresponding historical period in Austro-Hungarian history.

An impressive volume and a beautiful object.