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Old 10th August 2010, 01:47 PM   #12
Dmitry
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This is what a japanned small-sword hilt looks like. It's a French sergeants hanger from the mid-1700s.
No officer or otherwise a person of means would have a sword like this, as Jim writes, the darkened appearance of the hilt was done by other, way more expensive means than the asphaltum-based paint [i.e. japanning] - blueing and russeting.
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