Hello Geoff, I let my friend read the inscription on the blade (only the visible side). It says "shughul Majdal", meaning "work of Majdal" or in normal English "made in Majdal". This refutes the suggestion raised in an older thread (http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showt...ghlight=Majdali
) that the type with rounded, intricately decorated hilt and blade with grooves is made Damascus, not Majdal Shams. This type has been imitated by other production centers, like Damascus and this is probably what caused the confusion. I missed the date at first, but I see it in the pommel now (unususal place for inscription). 1944 is a good date for these daggers, as the majority of them were made later.
The older type has flatter hilt and heavy blade, the oldest dating to the end of the 19th c. Some members of the forum, in particular DaveA, own excellent and early examples of this type.