Our offering today is for an identified Navy Officer’s Sword from a very specialized Kaiserliche Marine branch. His name was Theodor Schneider, and he was born 22 February 1887. He became an officer in April 1905. He served in the Navy during WW I and retired from active service on 31 May 1920. Schneider was a Navy official who held the position of Marine=Zahlmeister. A Zahlmeister was a paymaster. [In the Imperial German Army, the regimental officer assigned to duty as a Zahlmeister wore a pickelhaube/kugelhelm with different fittings that differentiated his rank, (a point to remember)]. Schneider’s career was centered around ships that laid mines. He served as the paymaster for a single ship as well as a Flotilla.
This sword that once belonged to Schneider is in remarkable condition. One of the first things that you will notice in the photos attached to our description is that the sword’s back-strap is SILVER, unlike the brass used on the rest of the sword. [Indeed, most naval swords display all-brass fittings]. The silver trim extends from the Lionshead down the back-strap’s length. The grip that protrudes from the Lionshead’s mouth is all-brass, as is the rest of the sword’s furniture. The handle appears to be either bone or (possibly) ivory. [Its toning leads us to guess that it is ivory]. The handle’s wrap is made of gold-toned wire. The Lionshead’s eyes are the traditional naval green and red glass, replicating a ship’s port and starboard red and green running lights.
A lock-down plate that secures the sword in its scabbard extends down from the sword’s guard. Theodor Schneider’s name appears on the latter piece. The scabbard is made of leather (in fine condition) with three different brass fittings. Mounted on two of them are the rings by which the sword was hung from the sword-belt’s hangers. The sword blade is engraved on both sides with naval motifs.
Imperial German Navy swords are obviously much scarcer than those from the Imperial German Army, due to Army’s larger numbers. One for so specialized a rank increases its rarity. This is an extremely lovely, unusual, and rare sword that would make a fine addition to any naval collection. We are including a photocopy of naval Rangliste research about Schneider.