Magisterial Sword of the City Judge of Graz 1547

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Civic Legal Power

In the Middle Ages, a city judge was first responsible for the administration of the city. He carried this sword, the hilt and sheath of which are coated with blue velvet, as a token of his dignity and as a symbol of jurisdiction. 14 silver buckles are wrapped around the sheath, with the names and periods of office of the city judges and mayors of Graz engraved. The office of the mayor was introduced as late as in the 15th century, when the administrative efforts increased with the growing size of the city. Together with the judge and the council, he formed the municipal authorities.

Steel, velvet, silver
122,5 × 28,5 cm
Graz Museum / Photo: Arno Friebes