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Old 13th October 2005, 09:51 PM   #21
Aqtai's Avatar
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Merseyside, UK
Posts: 222

Originally Posted by Mark Bowditch
Tony supports his N. African provenance theory with a number of features from a number of pieces, so its not really unsupported in terms or argument (he gave a very interesting talk on it at the EEWRS dinner a couple years back). His position is, as Ariel points out, the subject of debate, and certainly based on empirical observation and deduction rather than historical or local information.

There are some ways to reconcile the two, for example taking into account that Ottoman troops may have brought it with them to places like Egypt during the Ottoman Empire period, or influence going the other way via trade or population movement. I think one unanswered question is how far back the style goes, which is always an interesting question to me, as it can open up possiblities of cross-cultural influence, or exclude others that would have post-dated the earliest appearance of the style (for example in this case, if it predates Ottoman presence in N. Africa).

This makes sense to me. Many of the best Ottoman troops in the 18th and early 19th century were "irregular" units who used their own traditional weapons and clothing. I wouldn't be surbrised if Laz units were stationed in Egypt or North Africa. After all Muhammad Ali Pasha who was Ottoman Governer of Egypt in the early 19th century and went on to become virtual dictator of Egypt, started his career as an officer in an Albanian "irregular" Unit, and he relied heavily on his fellow "Arna'ut" during his rise to power. On a another completetly unrelated (and slightly daft) side issue, that sword does bear a striking resemblence to the Ancient Egyptian khopesh...
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