C.1630. iron hilt with deeply dished shell guards pierced in a matrix of small circles. Straight cross guard and curved knuckle bow. The pommel, knuckle bow and cross guard terminals all of mushroom form. The side guards and knuckle bow each with addorsed swells of the same form. Pommel and cross guard, each with remains of thick fire gilt which would have covered the entire hilt originally. Fine silver wire wrapped grip. 29 5/8" rapier blade, the fuller pierced with alternate diamond and superimposed rectangles motifs. Fine glossy gray/brown patina throughout. Extraordinary preservation allowing a glimpse at how these swords appeared when made-a dazzling gold and silver hilt with a proud thrusting blade. Sweden entered the Thirty Years War supporting Protestant forces against the Holy Roman Empire. Her military success resulted in a rise as an important military power and territorial expansion which lasted for a century.