Basket hilt

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Protective wire-mesh (or curved plates) surrounding the hand when it grips a rattan sword. Basket-hilts are a much more popular method of protecting the hands of armored combatants than full gauntlets, due, in part, because of the improved grip and handling available when your hand is in direct contact with the rattan.

Heated arguments erupt when comparing these advantages against the loss of authenticity. Like many things within the SCA time period, if one looks hard enough, examples can be found supporting both sides of this argument. Swords sporting fully enclosed metal hilts did exist, but much more often a gauntlet or bare hand would have been used to wield a weapon.

Basket hilts come in a variety of materials, including steel, leather, iron, and most recently, rubber.

See half-gauntlet.

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