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Old 15th August 2016, 05:03 PM   #90
ariel's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
Posts: 4,221

I hate to disagree with Buttin, but my gut is telling me that his dating was overly optimistic: I think that 17 or more likely 18 century at the latest would be more realistic. And again, finding even 16 century blade on a shashka does not mean that the entire "saber" was made as such in the 16 century.

Genoese colonies in Crimea and Abkhazia existed since 12-13 centuries. Documented import of blades was recorded in the 17-18 centuries.

What were the 17 century blades exported to Circassia used for? I do not know. And nobody does. Everybody would love to say " for shashkas", but there is not a single example of a shashka reliably or even tentatively attributed by the handle to anything earlier than the very end of 18 century. Caucasus was in the throes of uninterrupted wars for centuries; weapons were broken, lost, parts used and reused, combined and recombined.... One cannot find neither heads nor tails.
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