The origins of the sword which hangs over the large Restoration era fireplace in the study of Charles St. Cyprian’s Cheyne Walk home are an enigma. Rather than the Norman longsword more commonly found in such places of honour in well-to-do English households–or, if the household in question is further north, the claidheamh mor or ‘claymore’–the blade instead resembles a xiphos

The sword is an heirloom of the St. Cyprian family, having been passed down from one generation to the next since the first member of the family set foot on ancient, fog-shrouded Albion, supposedly in the company of Brutus of Troy and the giant-killer, Corineus. Whether there is any truth to such stories, especially given the suspect nature of Geoffrey of Monmouth’s accounts of Britain’s early history, no one can say, or if they can, haven’t.

What powers, if any, that the sword may contain are equally mysterious. Some claim that the blade is legendary Caledfwlch itself, but St. Cyprian has been quick to quash these rumours, noting that his sword, while being in remarkably good condition, is simply a sword and nothing more. That said, the blade has seen off more than one supernatural entity in its time at Cheyne Walk.

Given its age, and status as a family heirloom, St. Cyprian only wields the sword rarely, and only when his home is invaded, such as its most recent use against the Yuletide terror of the Krampus.

Advertisements