Black Knight Medieval Sword
When people from around the world think of knights in shining armor, they often envision similar pictures – a mounted warrior in bright shining armor carrying a sword or lance, often with a colorful shield emblazoned with medieval symbols. The symbols on a knight’s shield were his heraldry, a complex set of designs (also called armory or armorial bearings) that detailed his origins and allegiance. Knights would wear the healdric devices of their lords and so represent them – in battle, in the tournament, and abroad in war or crusade. The wearing of heraldry on one’s shield is strongly associated with a knight’s honor and chivalric virtue.
By contrast, a Black Knight is someone who does not display heraldry. For reasons of his or her own, the Black Knight adopts a set of unmarked arms (by literary tradition, typically blacked armor, tunic, and shield at least) and refuses to disclose their identity. In many pieces of classical and modern fiction the Black Knight is therefore a villainous character, unwilling to stand behind their actions but defiantly standing in the path of the hero.
While some historical figures (notably Scottish knight James Stewart) took the title of “The Black Knight,” the trope itself may have originated with Arthurian legend. In Sir Thomas Malory’s unparalleled 15th-century classic, Le Morte d’Arthur, the character of the Black Knight appears and faces Sir
Gareth. Gareth, nephew of King Arthur and Knight of the Round Table, has the story of his journey to become a knight detailed in Le Morte d’Arthur – during which time he defeats the Black Knight as well as several other villainous knights on his journey. Sir Gareth remains a major character in the story until his death at the hands of Sir Lancelot during Lancelot’s brief rebellion against King Arthur, though the story of Gareth overcoming his foes (including the Black Knight) remains a major feature of the book.
Several other Black Knights appear in different versions of Arthurian legend, and we would be remiss if we did not include the most famous version here. In 1975 comedy film Monty Python and the Holy Grail, King Arthur (played by Graham Chapman) faces a fearsome Black Knight (played by John Cleese) guarding a “bridge” (played by a short wooden plank). The ensuing swordfight is famous even among those who do not typically enjoy the British comedy troupe’s humor, as King Arthur cuts off the Black Knight’s limbs one by one while the Black Knight comically refuses to acknowledge the severity of his wounds. The scene must be seen to be appreciated, so we have linked it here will all respect to the filmmakers and encourage everyone reading to purchase or rent a copy of the film.
Structurally, the Black Knight Sword is built to our usual standards of strength and resilience. The sword’s blade is responsive, well balanced, tough yet flexible. The sword’s light weight and balance make this medieval sword a potent thrusting weapon. The dual tempered 5160 steel blade is solid and extends though the grip with a full tang. Classically styled with the typically close quarter blades of the 14th and 15th C, the Black Knight is similar to many swords that would have been carried by mounted noble-born warriors. What sets it apart beyond the stylistic guard is the richly decorated pommel, which crowns an equally embellished leather wrapped handle.
Inspiring an essence of strength and heroism, the Black Knight sword is a must even for the most discriminating collector.
Blade: 5160 High Carbon Steel. Dual Tempered HRc 60
48-50 at the core
Total length: 35″
Blade length: 28″
Blade width at base: 2″
Weight: 2.6 lbs