Iron basket hilt of Oakeshott type 2. Bronze pommel with concentric stud motif. Side-seamed leather grip. Fine 32 7/8” double-edged blade engraved with bunched foliage over a cross with large cabalistic inscription below and maker’s mark to the reverse. Cabalistic inscriptions are not uncommon on blades of 17th century but seldom occupy more than a small panel among the decoration. swords. On this blade, the inscription is the dominant feature. Comprised of a mystical alphabet, such inscriptions were intended to draw strength from religion and sorcery, believed at the time to have common elements. The alphabet in this instance is Old Church Slavonic with disassociated elements of the characters combined. As the schiavona traces its roots to Slavonic mercenaries, who formed the body guard of the Doge of Venice, this blade, likely a family heirloom blade, originally from an earlier broadsword, may be dated among the earliest.