Stock Ref: AST 1966

An unusual Fraternity or Society sword to the Knights of Pythias in good condition - named.

72cm (28”) straight double edged blade with needle point. The blade is etched with a gilt finish for 2/3 of its length on both sides with scrolling foliate designs. On one side is the owners name J H Dressner and the legend Knights of Pythias on the other scrolling designs and a standing knight.

Cast metal heavily decorated cross guard and a central brass cartouche emblazoned with a knight on a horse surmounted by an eagle killing a snake. with a plant motif and an oak leaf and olive leaf surround. To the rear a brass disc with the date 2 January 1878, leather covered wooden grip with brass wire and a pommel in the design of a helmet surmounted by a bird.

Maker: Not known

Dated: 1878

Plain steel scabbard with two loose rings. Decorated chape.

The sword and scabbard are generally in very good condition. The sword blade has staining giving it a grey patina, however, the etchings remain clear, and the steel remains flexible. The guard is in good condition although the original chain guard is missing, and is firm on the tang. The leather grip has wear commensurate with use, the wire bindings are in very good condition. The scabbard has some dents and crease marks but the seam remains good and the chape and rings are intact.

The Knights of Pythias is a fraternal organization and secret society founded in Washington, D.C., on 19 February 1864.

The Knights of Pythias was the first fraternal organization to receive a charter under an act of the United States Congress. It was founded by Justus H. Rathbone, who had been inspired by a play by the Irish poet John Banim about the legend of Damon and Pythias. This legend illustrates the ideals of loyalty, honour, and friendship that are the centre of the order.

The order has over 2,000 lodges in the United States and around the world, and had a membership of over 200,000 in 2003.

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