This is an excellent example of a sword as carried by a cuirassier of the Thirty Years' War, representing the many principalities which later united to form Germany. Essentially the heavy cavalry of the period, they were armed with pistols and swords and protected by breastplate, back plate and helmet. In battle, pistols were fired as deemed effective, then the conflict reverted to swords in a melee which littered the field with corpses of men and horses. So devastating were the results of such battles that the structure changed but little for the next two hundred years and included Waterloo and Gettysburg. As with many weapons of the period, this example probably served again in the English Civil Wars of 1642-51, to which service it owes its survival. 25 3/4" length blade.