19th century. Bronze, with full relief figure of Satan standing on intertwined striking snakes extending to form the quillons. Broad medially ridged spatulate blade with chamfered tip. The form of the hilt is familiar with at least two other examples known. Significantly, they were not cast from the same pattern, indicating a common inspiration, probably an illustration from a ritual manual. The others are mounted with iron blades. The form, the blade, and the metal used strongly suggest the conduction and application of heat. Demonic rituals of the period were known to involve drawing blood and application of heat, including burning and branding. This instrument was almost certainly made to burn an initiate or victim of a satanic ritual.

Stock Number: FNS6485

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