When you're going into battle, a fancy weapon may not make you any tougher, but it sure is a confidence booster. And while many artisans have been tasked with creating bejeweled implements for monarchs and high-ranking leaders throughout history, not all beautiful ancient weapons were purely ornamental.
It's a little easier to admire the craftsmanship of such historical weapons now that they're housed in museums - and not actively being used in battle. In contrast to the practical and sometimes ugly weapons of the modern era, check out the following artifacts whose art overshadows their aim.
Flintlock Pistols Of Russian Empress Catherine The Great (c. 1786)39215Lethal beauty?
A Partisan Carried By The Bodyguard Of Louis XIV (c. 1678–1709 AD)32012Lethal beauty?
French Coronation Sword, 'La Joyeuse' (c. 13th Century AD)29414Lethal beauty?
Iranian Or Turkish Dagger (c. 1496-1497 AD)28715Lethal beauty?