Exceptionally Long English Plug Bayonet, ca. 1700


1 in stock

SKU: SD1922 Category:


Of very large proportions and made for a high caliber musket, the bayonet features brass
guard with short acorn-shaped finials; fluted cylindrical pommel. Long turned dark wood
grip with brass trellis work ferrule at the base. Double-edged 21 3/4″ flattened diamond-
section blade with central fuller. Broadening toward the point. Blade with age staining.
Overall length 30″.

Though probably originating around 1550, the plug bayonet had a relatively short span of
use from around 1650-1720 (except in Spain where they were used into the 19th C). Their
rise in popularity largely paralleled the development of standing armies in Europe, which
were realizing the importance of the musketeer, while at the same time not wanting to
wholly abandon the pike. In this sense the plug bayonet can be considered a transitional
weapon. However, despite its use as a dagger on its own, it was soon found to be
impractical since it’s use prevented the musket from being fired. Countless soldiers also
found great difficulties in removing a stuck plug bayonet from the muzzle, rendering the
musket useless as a firearm. Many were damaged while being removed and as a result
relatively few survive. For these reasons it was soon superseded by the socket bayonet,
which did not affect the musket’s ability to fire and could much more easily be removed.