15th century. Fine example of the short swords carried by commoners in defiance of the laws against that class carrying weapons. Made by swordsmiths to the same standard as the knightly swords of the period, they were likely the most valuable possession of their respective owners. These short swords are distinguished from working knives in several ways. They are generally longer and designed to move the percussion point toward the hilt, allowing for better control and maneuverability. Work knives of this size were intended for heavy service and made of wrought iron with a hardened steel edge forge welded on. Additionally, when encountered, these do not show the edge loss to sharpening seen on working knives. This example is 15 5/8” length with slab side blade, with broad beveled edge. The right side has a long acutely beveled false edge. The integral tang retains two grip rivets and the base of the side lug guard which circumvented the prohibition of cross guards on blades of this size. Professionally stabilized condition. An affordable true Gothic sword.