Next week, German militaria specialists Hermann Historica are offering an exceptional auction, or really a series of militaria auctions which includes a range of edged weapons including fine gilt swords and rapiers.
In particular a group of edged weapons is on offer which has been accumulated over generations by an illustrious Spanish ducal family.
Whereas for centuries the weapons of this core collection were part of these larger family possessions, during the Spanish Civil War they were for safety reasons securely shipped and stored abroad.
Fortunately, the complete collection has survived since then, being now set aside for auction for the first time.
When perusing the catalogue connoisseurs will see a series of Mediterranean chiselled weapons, the quality of which has not been offered in this richness since 1945, particularly not as such a slowly developed complex.
It is extremely rare that collectors are given the opportunity to select items out of the panoply of such a historic arsenal, thus being in a unique position to enrich their collections by such exquisite additions.
These weapons have never appeared on the market before, which in itself is a sensation.
Two of the highlights are exceptionally fine rapiers: Firstly, there is a magnificent German/Dutch gilt rapier from circa 1610-20.
Flatly ridged, with a double-edged blade and the ricasso marked on both sides, the sword boasts a fine gilt iron hilt with three-fold openwork ends, segmented by girdles and with double intermediate parts. There is also a later-added iron wire grip with Turk's heads.
The extraordinary pommel is made with crown-shaped openwork and gilt tang on the inside. In all the weapon is expected to slice its way through to €25,000 ($34,500).
Slightly earlier, but similar in quality and style is a German gold-plated rapier from circa 1580.
The double-edged thrusting blade has a flattened hexagonal section and both sides are signed "CLEMENS STAM" within the double fullers and struck with six marks on the ricasso.
The gold plated hilt ends with disc-shaped terminals and a striking double openwork pommel. The sword still has its original leather grip and Turk's heads of copper, with a full length of 128.5cm. All parts of the elegant weapon are original, with a Solingen blade, and it is expected that this will propel it to €16,000 ($22,100).
The auction takes place in Munich on October 24.