18th-early 19th century. Gilt hilt with radially reeded pommel and acorn form quillons. Ebony grip inlaid with chiseled iron plates both sides and edges. Genuine rapier blade of about 1650, 27 ½” length, deeply fullered at the forte. Indecipherable inscription both sides, appears to be THOMAS AYALA IN TOLEDO. This is a family (heirloom) blade plated and remounted for this sword, a custom among nobles selected for this high Papal honor. Papal Chamberlains, technically, Chamberlain of the Sword and Cape, were appointed from the nobility and high ranking clergy. Some were hereditary, spanning centuries of service by families close to the papacy while others were conferred in recognition of devotion and service to the Pope. It was among the highest honor conferred by the Papacy.
Item ID: A9806

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