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A Stunning Colonial Walking Stick of Carved and Turned Horn

A heavy quality stick of most attractive form and fine quality. Every other portrait of a Georgian, Victorian, or Edwardian gentleman, shows some nattily dressed fellow with a walking stick pegged jauntily into the ground or a slim baton negligently tucked under the elbow. The dress cane was the quintessential mark of the dandy for three centuries, part fashion accessory, part aid to communication, part weapon, and of course, a walking aid. A dandy, historically, is a man who places particular importance upon physical appearance, refined language, and leisurely hobbies, pursued with the appearance of nonchalance in a cult of self. A dandy could be a self-made man who strove to imitate an aristocratic lifestyle despite coming from a middle-class background, especially in late 18th- and early 19th-century Britain.

Previous manifestations of the petit-maitre (French for "small master") and the Muscadin have been noted by John C. Prevost, but the modern practice of dandyism first appeared in the revolutionary 1790s, both in London and in Paris. The dandy cultivated cynical reserve, yet to such extremes that novelist George Meredith, himself no dandy, once defined cynicism as "intellectual dandyism". Some took a more benign view; Thomas Carlyle wrote in Sartor Resartus that a dandy was no more than "a clothes-wearing man". Honore De Balzac introduced the perfectly worldly and unmoved Henri de Marsay in La fille aux yeux d'or (1835), a part of La Comedie Humaine, who fulfils at first the model of a perfect dandy, until an obsessive love-pursuit unravels him in passionate and murderous jealousy.

Charles Baudelaire defined the dandy, in the later "metaphysical" phase of dandyism, as one who elevates esthetics to a living religion, that the dandy's mere existence reproaches the responsible citizen of the middle class: "Dandyism in certain respects comes close to spirituality and to stoicism" and "These beings have no other status, but that of cultivating the idea of beauty in their own persons, of satisfying their passions, of feeling and thinking Dandyism is a form of Romanticism. Contrary to what many thoughtless people seem to believe, dandyism is not even an excessive delight in clothes and material elegance. For the perfect dandy, these things are no more than the symbol of the aristocratic superiority of mind."

The linkage of clothing with political protest had become a particularly English characteristic during the 18th century. Given these connotations, dandyism can be seen as a political protest against the levelling effect of egalitarian principles, often including nostalgic adherence to feudal or pre-industrial values, such as the ideals of "the perfect gentleman" or "the autonomous aristocrat". Paradoxically, the dandy required an audience, as Susann Schmid observed in examining the "successfully marketed lives" of Oscar Wilde and Lord Byron, who exemplify the dandy's roles in the public sphere, both as writers and as personae providing sources of gossip and scandal. Nigel Rodgers in The Dandy: Peacock or Enigma? Questions Wilde's status as a genuine dandy, seeing him as someone who only assumed a dandified stance in passing, not a man dedicated to the exacting ideals of dandyism.

Code: 15659

235.00 GBP


Shortlist item
A 500 Year Old Samurai Sword Signed Bizen Osafune Sukesada

Dated 8th month 2nd year of Eisho [1504/5] Eisho 2 nen 8 gatsu hi. Original brown Edo period lacquer saya, plain iron fushi kashira, pierced iron sukashi tsuba with small copper inlays. Blue silk wrap. The blade has a typical koto period, notare hamon that continues along the whole length of the blade. The blade has an old thinning opening on one side of the kissaki. The skill of the ancient samurai swordsmith was unsurpassed in the world and could take up to 30 years or more for a smith to fully master.
This samurai sword, like all true and original samurai swords, would have been the prize possession of every samurai that owned it. It would most likely have cost more than his home, and would certainly have been more important.
This is just one reason why fine Japanese sword steel, even of this tremendous age, is in such good state of preservation. When a katana such as this has been, for its entire existence, so highly revered, treasured and appreciated, it will have been cared for most sensitively and treated with the utmost respect during its entire life. In many regards it will have represented the only thing that stood between its samurai owner, of which there may have been 30 or more during this swords great history, and his ultimate downfall in a combat situation. The late Muromachi period was a time of continuous upheaval and war. The demand for swords was high and they needed to have excellent cutting ability. As such, Sukesada swords from this time that have survived to this day can be fine pieces.

Sukesada is a name forever synonymous with the Bizen region. The name spans over 60 generations. 24.25 inch blade overall in saya 35.5 inches long.

Code: 20232

4750.00 GBP


Shortlist item
Very Rare, London Published, 1616 Coryate's Traveller for the English Wits

An incredible book for the seasoned explorer-traveller. Written by the first Englishman [and Elizabethan] to do so, simply for the joy of travelling to unvisited parts, and first published in 1616. Tom Coryate is known as only the second Englishman to visit India, and the first ever traveller of the so called Grand Tour. The man, that history accredits, who introduced dinner forks to the English speaking world. This superb tome is entitled 'Greeting from the court of the Great Moghul, and resident in Asmere a town in Eastern India'. By Tom Coliate. A seemingly small book, composed of numerous letters, sent in the early 1600's to his English friends, from India. They were various gentleman of note and standing, including the Master of the Rolles in Chancery Lane and to the "Fraternity of Sireniacal Gentlemen" at the Mermaid Inn. Coriates Traveller for the English Wits; Greetings from the court of the most mighty monarch, the Great Moghul. Publ London 1616. Very rare, original, early 18th century copy. It has many border annotations and quotes, made by an owner, some in ancient Greek, and additions affixed on the inside cover including old bookseller advertisements. The original and first 1616 printing is now so rare that we do not know of another coming on to the market in the last ten years, and today, if one was to appear it would be not unreasonable to attract a likely price of ?20,000. In 1912 another of his published books the earlier Cortyate's Crudities sold for the princely sum of ?45, the equivalent today of the paid employment of a household of servants for one year. Thomas Coriate traveller for the English wits, greeting: from the court of the Great Mogul, resident at the Towne of Asmere, in Easterne India ([London]: 1616), p.27. The remarkable and eccentric Coryate (1577-1617) was only the second Englishman to visit India simply out of curiosity, a journey of some 3,300 miles, most of which he accomplished on foot. In a letter to his mother in England Coryates writes, 'I have rid upon an elephant since I came to this Court, determining one day (by Gods leave) to have my picture expressed in my next Booke, sitting upon an elephant' (p.26). Coryat was born in Crewkerne, Somerset, and lived most of his life in the Somerset village of Odcombe. He was a son of George Coryate (d. 1607). He was educated at Winchester College from 1591, and at Gloucester Hall, Oxford from 1596 to 1599. He was employed by Prince Henry, eldest son of James I as a sort of "court jester" from 1603 to 1607, alongside Ben Jonson, John Donne and Inigo Jones.

From May to October 1608 he undertook a tour of Europe, somewhat less than half of which he walked. He travelled through France and Italy to Venice, and returned via Switzerland, Germany and the Netherlands. He published his memoirs of the events in a volume entitled Coryat's Crudities hastily gobbled up in Five Months Travels in France, Italy, &c' (1611). In 1611 he published a second volume of travel writings, this one entitled Coryats Crambe, or his Coleworte twice Sodden. Coryat's letters from this time refer to the famous Mermaid Tavern in London, and mention Ben Jonson, John Donne and other members of a drinking club "Fraternity of Sireniacal Gentlemen" that met there.

Ever restless, he set out once again in 1612, this time on a journey that would ultimately lead to Asia, visiting Greece, the eastern Mediterranean including Constantinople by 1614, and walking through Turkey, Persia and eventually Moghul India by 1615, visiting the Emperor Jahangir's court in Ajmer, Rajasthan. From Agra and elsewhere he sent letters describing his experiences; this very book his Greetings from the Court of the Great Mogul was published in London in 1616, and a similar volume of his letters home appeared posthumously in 1618. In September 1617, at the invitation of Sir Thomas Roe, he visited the imperial court at Mandu, Madhya Pradesh. In November 1617 he left for Surat; he died of dysentery there in December of that year, his demise hastened by the consumption of sack. Though his planned account of the journey was never to be, some of his unorganized travel notes have survived and found their way back to England. These were published in the 1625 edition of Samuel Purchas's Hakluytus Posthumus or Purchas his Pilgrimes, contayning a History of the World in Sea Voyages and Lande Travells, by Englishmen and others.

Coryat's writings were hugely popular at the time. His accounts of inscriptions, many of which are now lost, were valuable; and his accounts of Italian customs and manners?including the use of the table fork?were influential in England at a time when other aspects of Italian culture, such as the madrigal, had already been in vogue for more than twenty years. He is considered by many to have been the first Briton to do a Grand Tour of Europe; a practice which became a mainstay of the education of upper class Englishmen in the 18th century.

Code: 20700

1950.00 GBP


Shortlist item
German Third Reich Officer's Sabre. Nickel Plated Dress Scabbard

Made by Horster of Solingen. Lion's head pommel with synthetic ruby eyes. Oak leaf pattern cast knuckle bow. Excellent bright steel blade, near mint condition. Wire bound black celluloid grip. The German Army (German: Heer, was the land forces component of the Wehrmacht, the German armed forces, from 1935 to 1945. The Wehrmacht also included the Kriegsmarine (Navy) and the Luftwaffe (Air Force). During World War II, a total of about 15 million soldiers served in the German Army, of whom about seven million became casualties. Separate from the army, the Waffen-SS (Armed SS) was a multi-ethnic and multi-national military force of the Third Reich. Growing from three regiments to over 38 divisions during World War II, it served alongside the army but was never formally part of it.

Only 17 months after Hitler announced publicly the rearmament program, the Army reached its projected goal of 36 divisions. During the autumn of 1937, two more corps were formed. In 1938, four additional corps were formed with the inclusion of the five divisions of the Austrian Army after the Anschluss in March. During the period of its expansion by Adolf Hitler, the German Army continued to develop concepts pioneered during World War I, combining ground (Heer) and air (Luftwaffe) assets into combined arms teams. Coupled with operational and tactical methods such as encirclements and the "battle of annihilation", the German military managed quick victories in the two initial years of World War II, prompting the use of the word Blitzkrieg (literally lightning war, meaning lightning-fast war) for the techniques used.

The German Army entered the war with a majority of its infantry formations relying on the horse for transportation. The infantry remained foot soldiers throughout the war; artillery also remained primarily horse-drawn. The motorized formations received much attention in the world press in the opening years of the war, and were cited as the main reason for the success of the German invasions of Poland (September 1939), Norway and Denmark (April 1940), Belgium, France and Netherlands (May 1940), Yugoslavia (April 1941) and the early campaigns in the Soviet Union (June 1941). However their motorized and tank formations accounted for only 20% of the Heer's capacity at their peak strength.

Code: 19428

645.00 GBP


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A Wonderful Napoleonic Wars Crown Stamped Military Issue Jäger Rifle, As Used by the 60th Rifle Regt. Before The 95th's Baker Rifle

Fine walnut full stock, in great polish, with King George IIIrd crown stamp on the reverse side butt. Sighted barrel, with numerous regimental stamps, fitted with rear leaf sight with 600, 500 & 400, yards bevelled lock with brass bank, swinging safety and stamped with its number across the tail, the butt with traditional wooden Jägers patch box, regulation brass mounts, all steel cupped rifle ramrod. An original Napoleonic wars military issue rifle, the 60th Regiment's predecessor to the world renown Baker Rifle later issued to the 95th. Another remarkable thing about this rifle is that is a little more than half the cost today of it's equivalent more well known successor, a regulation issue Baker Rifle. This is due to the fact it does not quite have the fame as associated with the Baker of the 95th Rifles. “De Rottenburg organized his new battalion entirely for the special duties of ‘Riflemen.’ They were to be the ‘eyes of the army.’ He instituted a perfect system of drill for riflemen, and out-post duties; this system he printed in a book, which was afterwards embodied in the book of ‘Field Exercise and Evolutions of the Army,’ with a complimentary order by the Duke of York, then Commander-in-Chief. This rifle was used prior to and during the Napoleonic Wars, the Peninsular War, the War of 1812 in America, and in the period of War of the 100 Days at Waterloo. The men in Hompesch’s British rifle corps were of all nations, [except English and French] and four hundred of the ‘Mounted Riflemen’ formed the nucleus of the new battalion, but they were chiefly Germans, and in Germany Rottenberg placed recruiting officers for the purpose of raising men for Britain's 60th.". "The battalion thus formed was the original of those battalions now so well known, and so distinguished in every sense of the word, as ‘Riflemen.’ The men were dressed and equipped as Jägers. They were armed with rifles, and carried what were called ‘rifle bags’ made of leather, instead of knapsacks; they grew the moustache, and they were dressed in green. In this particular they claim priority, in time, to all other battalions in the British army….” A superbly effective rifle, and a super and fine historical example, with the traditional German style patch box in wood as opposed to the Baker's brass version. A very fine walnut stock, brass furniture, including large ramrod pipes, heavy steel ramrod. Superb tight and crisp action. 28.75 inch rifled octagonal barrel, 44 inches long overall. “The men in Hompesch’s British rifle corps were of all nations, except English and French and four hundred of the ‘Mounted Riflemen’ formed the nucleus of the new battalion, but they were chiefly Germans, and in Germany De Rottenberg placed recruiting officers for the purpose of raising men for Britain's 60th.". "The battalion thus formed was the original of those battalions now so well known, and so distinguished in every sense of the word, as ‘Riflemen.’ The men were dressed and equipped as Jägers. They were armed with rifles, and carried what were called ‘rifle bags’ made of leather, instead of knapsacks; they grew the moustache, and they were dressed in green. In this particular they claim priority, in time, to all other battalions in the British army….” On our previous example, we had a few years ago, it still had inside the patch box, its original hand written label circa 1800, in part English and German, that gave what we believed to be the name of the rifleman 'Kluge' that used it, it's calibre, the gun's number 157, promise right of supply, and notes on it's accuracy at 100 ,150, 200, 250, 300, 400, 500, 600 & 700. [We can enclose with our compliments a copy photo of that list, in our previous Jager rifle of the 60th, just to show to the new owner of this rifle, what it once may also have had stuck within the patch box lid]. Before the standard Baker rifle, which was a near direct copy of this Jäger rifle, replaced the Jäger rifles, this was the rifle acquired by England from Prussia, by the British ordnance, and was issued to the earliest British rifle regiment the 60th, formed in the late 18th century. They were then used in America and Ireland, and then in Spain, Portugal & France in the Napoleonic Wars. These rifles are referred to in British Military Firearms 1650 to 1850 by Howard Blackmore. The story of the earliest British rifle regiment goes as follows; at the end of 1797 - the year in which the Duke of York became colonel in-chief -of the 60th, it was decided to increase British forces in America, and an Act of Parliament was passed authorizing the Crown "to augment His Majesty's 60th Regiment of Infantry by the addition of a Fifth Battalion," to serve in America only, and to consist of foreigners. This battalion, the first green-coated rifle battalion in the Army, was organized under the command of Lieut-Colonel Baron de Rottenburg, of Hompesch's Corps. It was formed of 17 officers and 300 men from Hompesch's Chasseurs, and was dressed in bottle-green cut-away coats with scarlet facings, white waistcoats, blue pantaloons, with black leather helmets and black belts. They were armed, at first, with inferior 'contract' rifles imported from Germany, but after those were rejected this better type and this is one of the ones that was chosen. This fifth or "Jager" battalion served in Ireland in 1798 during the Rebellion, and then proceeded to the West Indies, where, in June, 1799, it received 33 officers and 600 men from Lowenstein's Chasseurs, another regiment of foreigners, at the capture of Surinam in 1791 and afterwards in South and North America. In 1804 an Act was passed authorizing 10,000 foreign troops to serve in England, and the 5th Battalion was brought home in consequence in 1806. It went to Portugal in June, 1808, and from the opening skirmish at Obidos, on 15th August, two days before the battle of Roleia or Rolica down to the end of the war, took part in Wellington's campaigns in Portugal, Spain and the South of France. After the peace, this battalion was disbanded. This rifle is a superb piece and all the metal is in great condition too. In the last picture in the gallery there is a picture of a 60th Rifleman next to a 95th in the Peninsular War. Note the 60th Rifleman's patch box on his Jäger Rifle. The stock has an old service repair to the stock underneath the site. And we noticed inside the patchbox lid another, but feint, [GR] crown military inspection stamp. As with all our antique guns no license is required as they are all unrestricted antique collectables

Code: 23383

6975.00 GBP


Shortlist item
A Super 1862 Colt 'Police' .36 Calibre Fluted Cylinder Revolver

Colt 1862 .36 caliber pistol was originally made for the New York Metropolitan Police Dept. President Abraham Lincoln often chose the Colt Police as a presentation pistol. It was very popular with police and others as its size was compact but it packed a powerful punch. Fine example with traditional .36 cal fluted cylinder, and fine walnut grips. New York Address to the barrel. Serial number with "E" suffix Manufactured in 1863. The top of the barrel is marked with one line block letter New York address and has a pin front sight. The cylinder is stamped "PAT. SEPT. 10th 1850" inside one of the flutes, the frame is stamped "COLTS/PATENT" on the left side, the trigger guard is marked "36 CAL". A rare British proofed London export revolver. Fitted with a smooth one piece varnished walnut grip. The '62 Police is regarded by many as one of the most streamlined production arms to leave the Colt factory during the Percussion Era.

Code: 21778

2100.00 GBP


Shortlist item
Medieval ‘Crusader’s’ Christian Cross ✝️ Pierced Bearded, Battle-Axe/War-Hammer 12th -15th century AD

A substantial and beautiful iron battle-axe/war-hammer, likely of a ‘Warrior of Christ’, such as a Knight of St John of Jerusalem. It is pierced in the body with a superb, large open work Christian ‘bottonee or budded’ cross, sometimes known as part of the Apostles cross. A cross with three circles or discs on each end in a Christian context represents the Holy Trinity but was probably also copied from earlier Celtic Druidry, where the circles or rings represent the three dominions of earth, sky and sea. It has a D-section tubular socket, blade with straight upper edge and bearded profile, 'loophole' void at the neck, square-section hammer to the rear. After the fall of the Kingdom of Jerusalem in 1291 (the city of Jerusalem had fallen in 1187), the Knights were confined to the County of Tripoli and, when Acre was captured in 1291, the order sought refuge in the Kingdom of Cyprus. Finding themselves becoming enmeshed in Cypriot politics, their Master, Guillaume de Villaret, created a plan of acquiring their own temporal domain, selecting Rhodes to be their new home, part of the Byzantine empire. His successor, Foulques de Villaret, executed the plan, and on 15 August 1310, after more than four years of campaigning, the city of Rhodes surrendered to the knights. They also gained control of a number of neighboring islands and the Anatolian port of Halicarnassus and the island of Kastellorizo.
Pope Clement V dissolved the Hospitallers' rival order, the Knights Templar, in 1312 with a series of papal bulls, including the Ad providam bull that turned over much of their property to the Hospitallers.

The holdings were organised into eight "Tongues" or Langues, one each in Crown of Aragon, Auvergne, Crown of Castile, Kingdom of England, France, Holy Roman Empire, Italy and Provence. Each was administered by a Prior or, if there was more than one priory in the langue, by a Grand Prior.

At Rhodes, and later Malta, the resident knights of each langue were headed by a baili. The English Grand Prior at the time was Philip De Thame, who acquired the estates allocated to the English langue from 1330 to 1358. In 1334, the Knights of Rhodes defeated Andronicus and his Turkish auxiliaries. In the 14th century, there were several other battles in which they fought.

In 1374, the Knights took over the defence of Smyrna, conquered by a crusade in 1344. They held it until it was besieged and taken by Timur in 1402.

On Rhodes the Hospitallers, by then also referred to as the Knights of Rhodes, were forced to become a more militarized force, fighting especially with the Barbary pirates. They withstood two invasions in the 15th century, one by the Sultan of Egypt in 1444 and another by the Ottoman Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror in 1480 who, after capturing Constantinople and defeating the Byzantine Empire in 1453, made the Knights a priority target. 1.1 kg, 25cm (9 3/4"). Fine condition. Photos To be added early next week, after the surface has been conserved. See Sedov, B.B., Finno-Ugri i Balti v Epokhi Srednevekovija, Moscow, 1987, plate CXXIV, item 4, for type.

Code: 23405

Price
on
Request


A Fabulous 1796 Napoleonic Wars British Dragoon Officer's Sword

By Tatham, Sword Cutler To His Majesty, Charing Cross, London. Deeply curved crescentric blade, beautifully engraved with a dismounted light dragoon officer wearing his Tarlton helmet. Mercurial gilt hilt cast with acanthus leaf decor across the knucklebow guard etc. In 1796 a new form of sabre was designed by a brave and serving officer, Le Marchant. Le Marchant commanded the cavalry squadron during the Flanders campaign against the French (1793-94). Taking notice of comments made to him by an Austrian Officer describing British Troopers swordplay as "reminiscent of a farmer chopping wood", he designed a new light cavalry sword to improve the British cavalryman's success. It was adopted by the Army in 1797 and was used for 20 years. Le Marchant was highly praised by many for his superb design and he further developed special training and exercise regimes. King George IIIrd was especially impressed and learnt them all by heart and encouraged their use throughout the cavalry corps. For a reward Le Marchant was promoted to Lt Colonel and given command of the 7th Light Dragoons. The mounted swordsmanship training of the British emphasised the cut, at the face for maiming or killing, or at the arms to disable. This left masses of mutilated or disabled troops; the French, in contrast, favoured the thrust, which gave cleaner kills. A cut with the 1796 LC sabre was, however, perfectly capable of killing outright, as was recorded by George Farmer of the 11th Regiment of Light Dragoons, who was involved in a skirmish on the Guadiana River in 1811, during the Peninsular War:
"Just then a French officer stooping over the body of one of his countrymen, who dropped the instant on his horse's neck, delivered a thrust at poor Harry Wilson's body; and delivered it effectually. I firmly believe that Wilson died on the instant yet, though he felt the sword in its progress, he, with characteristic self-command, kept his eye on the enemy in his front; and, raising himself in his stirrups, let fall upon the Frenchman's head such a blow, that brass and skull parted before it, and the man's head was cloven asunder to the chin. It was the most tremendous blow I ever beheld struck; and both he who gave, and his opponent who received it, dropped dead together. The brass helmet was afterwards examined by order of a French officer, who, as well as myself, was astonished at the exploit; and the cut was found to be as clean as if the sword had gone through a turnip, not so much as a dint being left on either side of it" The blade is remembered today as one of the best of its time and has been described as the finest cutting sword ever manufactured in quantity. Leather original scabbard good condition overall for age, small service repair to leather.

Code: 23403

1900.00 GBP


Shortlist item
Medievil 13th Century Bronze and Iron Flail Mace, Henry IIIrd & Edward Ist Period

Medieval Flail Head with Chain 13th Century used until the 15th century.
A bronze flail head formed around a central pin with short neck, circular loop and domed terminal; suspended from a chain comprised of a single round-section hoop and a series of 'figure of eight' style links; the flail head is broadly spherical with seven vertically arranged faces divided horizontally into quarters, creating twenty eight facetted faces in total. From the period of the 8th Crusade and the Wars in Scotland against Sir William Wallace by the Edward I (17/18 June 1239 – 7 July 1307), also known as Edward Longshanks and the Hammer of the Scots (Latin: Malleus Scotorum), was King of England from 1272 to 1307 . The last major crusade aimed at the Holy Land, and an failure that well symbolises the end of the crusades. In the previous twenty years, the remaining crusader states had become increasingly powerless pawns while tides of Mongol and then Mameluke conquests swept across the area. Louis IX of France, in an attempt to restore the situation, decided to go back on crusade after nearly twenty years, but mislead by the idea that the Bey of Tunis could be converted to Christianity, he decided to land first in Tunisia, then march across Egypt to the Holy Land. However, once he arrived in Tunisia, it was clear that this was not the case, and he had to besiege Tunis. Louis then died in an epidemic, to be replaced by his brother Charles of Anjou, king of Sicily, and a reluctant crusader, who negotiated terms with the Bey, who paid tribute to him and France, after which the crusade ended. After the crusade was over, the future Edward I of England arrived, and finding the crusade over, journeyed on himself to the Holy Land, where the powerful crusader fortress of Krak had just been captured by Baibars, where he campaigned until 1272, when the death of his father Henry III forced him to return to England. The crusading era in the Holy Land ended in 1291, with the fall of Acre, the last crusader base in Palestine. This type of European flail is a shorter weapon consisting of a wooden haft connected by a chain, with a bronze faceted orb striking end. Modern works variously refer to this particular weapon as a "military flail," "mace-and-chain" or "chain mace," and sometimes erroneously label them as simply a "mace" or morning star, terms which technically apply only to rigid weapons. Some historians refer to this weapon as a kettenmorgenstern ("chain morning star") to distinguish it from the rigid weapon. We show in the gallery early manuscript paintings of knights with chain flails but the illustrated size of the mace head, as usual even today, are exaggerated. 355 grams, 74cm (29"). Fine condition, conserved.

Code: 23404

1995.00 GBP


Shortlist item
A Superb Victorian British General's Mameluke Sabre, With a Rare Damascus Pattern Blade, 1831 Pattern

Ivory grip General's mameluke, with a mint gilt bronze hilt, superb blade in near mint condition, magnificently emblazoned with the emblem of a General of the British Army, a Field Marshal's baton crossed with a sabre, VR cypher of Queen Victoria with the crown, and on an amazing Damascus style ground combine with mirror bright polished highlights. Gold and crimson bullion general's sword knot. The same type of sword as used by Lords Cardigan or Raglan, and used by one of their contemporaries. Fully deluxe etched with the cypher of Queen Victoria. Brass scabbard with 3 usage creases. This magnificent sabre would have seen many decades of service as it has the early form of brass scabbard that was determined for use during the reign of Queen Victoria. The Pattern 1831 sabre for General Officers is a British army pattern sword prescribed for the use of officers of the rank of major-general and above. It has been in continuous use from 1831 to the present. It is an example of a type of sword described as a mameluke sabre. Both French and British army officers encountered kilij and shamshir sabres as a result of Napoleon's expedition to Egypt (1798–1801). Termed 'mameluke sabres' after the Mamluk warrior caste of Egypt, they became a fashionable accessory for officers, particularly senior officers. Similar swords were also found in India, and these probably influenced British officers also. Mameluke swords, both Middle Eastern and copies made in Europe, were adopted, unofficially, by officers of light cavalry regiments in the first decade of the 19th century, some were used as 'walking out swords' (for ornamental wear on social occasions on foot) but others were employed on active campaign. They are prominent in images of officers of the British Hussar regiments painted by Robert Dighton jr. in 1807. As officially regulated dress or levée swords they first appear in 1822 for lancer regiments. Soon, other light cavalry and some heavy cavalry regiments also adopted similar patterns.

In 1822 generals and staff officers adopted a variant of the 1822 infantry officer's sword (often referred to as the 'Gothic hilt sabre'). It differed only in minor decorative elements of the guard and in the decoration of the blade. The decision to introduce a mameluke sword as the official regulation sword for officers of the rank of major-general and above is generally ascribed to the Duke of Wellington who is known to have favoured this type of sword himself One ivory grip plate with small chip near quillon.

Code: 23402

1395.00 GBP


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