Cutlass I

Early daggers (c. 1000-1150) seem to have been knives, very similar in shape to a modern kitchen knife. They were called 'cultellus' from which cutlass is derived. The word cutlass now refers to a short thick curved sword used especially by sailors some centuries ago.

This type of blade was clearly illustrated by the painter Jacques-Louis David in 1784 in 'The Oath of the Horatii', a classical style painting which expressed the ideals and ambitions of the French Revolutionists.

The natural beautiful colours of the woods used serve to enhance the austere perfection of line and form of the blade.


blade type; cutlass
blade length; 50 cm., 20 inches
overall length; 67 cm., 26 inches

Woods used:

blade; jarrah
cross-guard; red beech type; 7*
pommel; rimu type; B (modified by artist)*


The Sword in the Age of Chivalry, R. Ewart Oakeshott F.S.A.
Arms and Armour Press, Revised Edit. 1981

A Knight and His Weapons, R. Ewart Oakeshott F.S.A.
Lutterworth Press, 1964