Sword, France (possibly made) Switzerland (possibly made), ca. 1760, V Swords were worn with civilian clothes as ‘small swords’, for self-defence and denoting status for the well-dressed gentleman. Small swords were items of male jewellery. By the 1750s, their elaborate gold and silver hilts, mounted with precious stones and fine enamelling, were the products of the goldsmith and jeweller rather than the swordsmith. They made fitting rewards for distinguished military and naval service.