If so, it's probably not the weapon that Blackbeard would have primarily used in combat (likely not even in his final duel with Captain Maynard). Pirates and the like preferred blades with more protection for the handle. However the conspicuous hole in the hilt suggests a chain guard. Whatever the case might be however, it is a rich and handsome weapon: just the sort that one could imagine being carried by Blackbeard.
National Geographic's website has more photos of this sword handle. I'm wondering if it'll go on display in Raleigh anytime soon. If so, I'll have to go check it out :-)