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The 15th-century warlord sword digitized more than 500 years after his death in the battle

connectVideo15th-century warlord sword digitized more than 500 years after his death in the battle

An ornate sword that was ever used by the 15th-century warlord Ali Atar has been brought into the digital age, digitized in a 3-D animation model. Ali Atar was a military commander in the service of King Boabdil, the last sultan of Granada. Made by Spain’s Universitat Politècnica de València and 3-D specialist Ingheritag3D, the interactive animation allows viewers to run a digital version of the sword from the hilt and take a look at the extensive artifact.

An ornate sword that belonged to a 15th-century warlord in Muslim Spain has been digitized in stunning 3-D.

The sword, which is covered with gold, ivory and precious metals, which was used by Ali Atar, a military commander in the service of King Boabdil, the last sultan of Granada. Atar has died at the age of 90 in a failed attempt of Boabdil the troops for the capture of the city of Lucena of Christian forces. Boabdil, also known as Muhammad XII of Granada, was captured in the battle.

Experts of the Spanish Universitat Politècnica de València (UPV) and 3-D specialist Ingheritag3D created a digital version of the sword that was in the Toledo Army Museum in the centre of Spain.

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In the first instance, the weapon was photographed from a number of different angles using a technique called photogrammetry. The images were then overlapped and combined with careful drawings of the sword’s filigree grip of the 3-D model.

The sword was digitized in the workshops of the Toledo Army Museum in Spain. (IngHeritag3D)

The experts published their research in the Virtual Archaeology Review.

“These techniques offer the possibility to the valuation of the relevant documents within and outside of museums, since three-dimensional modelling, prepared for the specialists-who can manipulate the piece virtually, and the shared public and interactive through the Internet,” says Margot Gil-Melitón, the study co-author, in a statement.

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The interactive 3-D animation lets viewers rotate a digital version of the sword from the hilt and take a look at the extensive artifact.

Mohammed XII. Abu Abdallah, known as Boabdil, the Emir of Granada.
(Photo by: Carl Simon/United Archives/UIG via Getty Images)

Researchers in Spain have shed new light on other aspects of the turbulent period in the history of the country.

Last year, for instance, experts announced that a secret 500-year-old letters sent by King Ferdinand II of Aragon, on one of his military commanders have finally deciphered. Ferdinand sent the letters to Gonzalo Fernández de Córdoba known as the Great Captain, during a military campaign in Italy in the beginning of the 16th century.

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Spain’s Army Museum called in experts from the Spanish intelligence service, the Centro Nacional de Inteligencia (CNI), to assist in the deciphering of the mysterious documents. The letters, which use a combination of 237 letter codes and 88 symbols, had baffled historians.

A photogrammetric image of the sword. (InHeritag3D)

The king, known as Ferdinand the Catholic, is an important historical figure. He played an important role in the “Reconquista” or “Reconquest”, which ended centuries of Islamic domination of the Iberian Peninsula. Ferdinand, with his wife Queen Isabella I of Castile, also sponsored the voyage of Christopher Columbus to the New World in 1492.

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The princes also laid the foundations for the unification of Spain as their two kingdoms were combined in the 15th century. Thanks to his marriage, became King Ferdinand of Castile, following Isabelle’s coronation as Queen of Castile in 1474. He was also King of Aragon on the death of his father in 1479.

Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

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