The gladius, the primary weapon of the Roman legionaries from the 3rd c. BC to the 3rd c. AD, was used in many variations over the centuries. Primarily designed as a thrusting/stabbing weapon, it was also quite effective at cutting or slashing. Eventually, this highly feared short sword was gradually superseded by the longer spatha during the mid/late Roman Empire.
This Roman shortsword is a reconstruction of a classically styled 1st c. Fulham (or Mainz-Fulham) type gladius, named after an archaeological find from the early 1st c. AD recovered from the Thames in Fulham (London) in 1883. The remains of the original - the iron blade with a broken tang and without hilt and the sheath, of which only the frame, chape and two bronze plates survived - are on display at the British Museum in London.
With its parallel, straight (or sometimes slightly "waisted") edges and long point, the Fulham pattern is believed to be a transitional type between the Mainz and the later Pompeii types. However, as the Mainz and the Fulham gladii were concurrently used during the first half of the 1st c., some historians rather consider the Fulham as a mere variation within the Mainz group.
The broad, straight double-edged blade of the Roman sword we offer here is forged out of EN45 spring steel (not tempered, not hardened). It has a flat diamond cross-section and a long, sharply pointed tip. The edges are not sharpened and the blade's full tang is screwed to the pommel (brass top nut). The hilt is crafted from wood and features an inset guard plate made of brass.
This one-handed Fulham style gladius comes complete with a brown wood-and-leather scabbard with protective brass fittings (a throat band, three crossbands and a frame or side gutters extending top to bottom and terminating in a finial). The two upper bands are equipped with cast brass suspension rings which allow the bearer to carry his gladius in true Roman fashion.
Please note that this sword is not a battle ready weapon. It is designed as a collector's or decoration/display piece and is not suited for combat reenactment. Besides its quality as a collectible, it is also perfectly suited as a prop, e.g. to complete your costume.
- Material: EN45 spring steel blade (high carbon steel, not stainless), wooden hilt with brass pommel nut and guard inlay.
- Overall length: approx. 71 cm.
- Blade length: approx. 52 cm.
- Blade thickness: approx. 4 mm / 3 mm (cutting edges approx. 1 mm).
- Hilt length: approx. 19 cm (grip approx. 9.5 cm).
- Max. blade width: approx. 5 cm.
- Point of balance: approx. 11 cm from the guard.
- Incl. wooden scabbard with genuine leather cover and brass fittings.
- Weight without scabbard: approx. 0.65 kg.
- Weight with scabbard: approx. 1.1 kg.
Shipping time: 7 to 14 Days.