Original German WWII Army Heer Officer's Lion Head Sword with Monogrammed Crossguard
Original Item: Only One Available. This is a beautiful classic Lionhead German WWII Officer sword, bearing the owner's monogram on the rear cross guard, complete with a its original scabbard. The all brass hilt consists of a finely detailed lion head cat with an engraved backstrap and "P" guard. The Lion is fitted with blood red faceted "jewel" eyes. There is nice detail throughout his whiskers, chin, and muzzle. The handwork is beautifully rendered throughout this brass. The backstrap consists of raised serrated leaf designs, with the minimized side tabs having a similar motif. The "P" guard has a lovely raised out oak leaf and acorns, as well as a Reichsadler, while the ferrule has the standard Oak Leaves and Acorns around the circumference.
The crossguard has a spread winged eagle which looks to the viewer's left. The breast area of this eagle, as well as the wings, have been hand-enhanced. The hilt has a lovely aged brass patina, which is only achieved through the decades passing. The reverse has a small plate where where a very nice intertwined WW monogram has been added. The grip is an outstanding black celluloid-over-wood base. It is wrapped with four brass wires, with the middle two twisted together. The hilt and all components are tight to the blade, with no wobble we can see.
The scabbard of this example still has good original factory black enamel, it is retained at 90% with no dents we can see. The enamel is missing on part of the drag on both sides, which has now rusted a bit. The rest of the scabbard has some areas of light oxidation and crazing, but nothing major.
The 31 3/4 inch blade of this example is in very good condition, though there is significant denting on the unsharpened factory edge. It is possible that it was used in some type of sword play during or after the war, but there is no way to be sure what caused the damage. Aside from that, the nickel-plating is just shy of complete, with just light light scratching in places. The ricasso on either side of the blade does not bear any maker marks, but this is not uncommon. The large blade makers would often make just unmarked blades, which were purchased by retailers and artisans, who them built them into officer's swords. As this one has an engraved monogram, not having a maker is definitely not unusual.
Overall an very good condition monogrammed German Army Officer's sword from WWII, ready to display!
The German Army (German: Heer, was the land forces component of the Wehrmacht, the German armed forces, from 1935 to 1945. The Wehrmacht also included the Kriegsmarine (Navy) and the Luftwaffe (Air Force). During World War II, a total of about 15 million soldiers served in the German Army, of whom about seven million became casualties. Separate from the army, the Waffen-SS (Armed SS) was a multi-ethnic and multi-national military force of the Third Reich. Growing from three regiments to over 38 divisions during World War II, it served alongside the army but was never formally part of it.
Only 17 months after Hitler announced publicly the rearmament program, the Army reached its projected goal of 36 divisions. During the autumn of 1937, two more corps were formed. In 1938, four additional corps were formed with the inclusion of the five divisions of the Austrian Army after the Anschluss in March. During the period of its expansion by Adolf Hitler, the German Army continued to develop concepts pioneered during World War I, combining ground (Heer) and air (Luftwaffe) assets into combined arms teams. Coupled with operational and tactical methods such as encirclements and the "battle of annihilation", the German military managed quick victories in the two initial years of World War II, prompting the use of the word Blitzkrieg (literally lightning war, meaning lightning-fast war) for the techniques used.
The German Army entered the war with a majority of its infantry formations relying on the horse for transportation. The infantry remained foot soldiers throughout the war; artillery also remained primarily horse-drawn. The motorized formations received much attention in the world press in the opening years of the war, and were cited as the main reason for the success of the German invasions of Poland (September 1939), Norway and Denmark (April 1940), Belgium, France and Netherlands (May 1940), Yugoslavia (April 1941) and the early campaigns in the Soviet Union (June 1941). However their motorized and tank formations accounted for only 20% of the Heer's capacity at their peak strength.
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