Depiction of a “Reverse Edge” Falchion on a Late XIIIth Century Painted Ceiling in South Central France

I am beginning work on a descriptive article of this wonderful late XIIIth century depiction of a sword and buckler vs. falchion and buckler duel which may push back the documented appearance of the “reverse edge” falchion (Elmslie Type 2) by a few decades. It appears on the fully painted ceiling of a well documented and studied medieval structure, the Doyenné de Brioude, in central France. The ceiling was restored in 2018, with scaffolding that allowed me to examine the iconography in great detail.

The building is the subject of a detailed pre-renovation archaeological and architectural report, covering the medieval trough modern periods. The ceiling itself is also the object of a thorough heraldic analysis, giving convincing dating arguments. Finally, two dendrochronological analyses of the ceiling allow dating of the depiction to within two years.[1]The second study dates the ceiling to within 2 months. However, there is some question as to the methodology of the second dendrochronology. The paper will address this.

There is still a lot of work to do before I can assert anything. Stay tuned!

Notes & References

1 The second study dates the ceiling to within 2 months. However, there is some question as to the methodology of the second dendrochronology. The paper will address this.

Anthony Rischard

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