"Ballinderry Ulfberht sword, steel hilt, viking sword, functional blunt
Ballinderry Ulfberht sword, viking scabbard sword, 9th c. - steel handle
This beautiful one-handed sword from the Viking Age is modeled after a bog find dating back to the Middle Ages. 9th century and classified as type "K" according to Petersen's typology of Viking swords. The original, exceptionally well-preserved piece was found in Ballinderry (Ireland) in 1928 and is now on display in the National Museum of Ireland in Dublin. Its overall construction and appearance, the materials used and other artefacts found with it clearly indicate that Ballinderry's sword was a high status weapon. It is believed to have belonged to a wealthy Irishman - perhaps a prosperous farmer or chieftain - but it is not known how the sword ended up in the hands of its Irish owner.
In terms of form, this one-handed sword is a classic example of a Norse weapon and has the typical characteristics of a traditional Dark Age sword. Or some of its characteristics reveal a more complex history: while the handle is undoubtedly Scandinavian, the blade appears to be of Frankish origin. It is marked with the name of its maker, ULFBERHT, a Rhine blacksmith's workshop believed to be one of the first "brands" of swords - with around 170 swords dating from the 9th to the 11th century bearing the same inscription +VLFBERHT+ and found all over Europe (even to western Russia). So, in the case of this particular weapon, the findings suggest that the blade imported from Germany was made into a sword by a Norse craftsman before it finally arrived (probably through battle, or more likely through trade) in Ballinderry.
The battle ready replica we offer here has a blade made of spring reinforced 5160 high carbon steel hardened to a Rockwell hardness of approx. 48-52 HRC. As on the archaeological specimen, the double-edged blade with a broad tip bears the inscription +ULFBERHT+. The entire top is sewn on apple, but the blunt 2 mm thick edges and rounded top make this excellent reproduction ideal for fight reconstruction, stage or sparring.
The short guard and distinctive multi-lobed apple are made of steel and both closely recreate the scroll and vine-like scroll motifs of the original artifact. Like many original examples from this period, the apple consists of several parts joined together with rivets. The wooden handle of the core is tightly wrapped with a brown leather cord.
- Blade material: high carbon steel 5160, hardened
- Rockwell hardness: approx. 48-52 HRC
- Handle material: wood covered with leather, steel apple and guard
- Total length: approx. 94 cm
- Blade length: approx. 79 cm
- Handle length: approx. 15 cm (grip eye 10.5 cm)
- Blade width on guard: approx. 5 cm
- Blade thickness: approx. 4 mm (cutting edges approx. 2 mm)
- Balance point: approx. 17 cm from the guard
- Weight without shell: approx. 1.1 kg
- Weight with peel: approx. 1.5 kg
- Weight with scabbard and hanger: approx. 1.7 kg
- Incl. wooden scabbard with real leather upholstery, leather carrying loops and bronze fittings