EAA Research Consultant
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Route 66
It certainly looks like the standard British M1796 to me, though the tip of the blade does not have the characteristic hatchet point.
I wonder what this was doing in Angola?
Fernando, you mention a Portuguese version of 1806 of the British light cavalry M1796. Did Portugal actually produce these?
I recall earlier discussions where it was noted that British small arms were shipped to Portugal from latter 18th century into the 19th.
I did some checking in "The Portuguese Army of the Napoleonic Wars"(Rene Chartrand and William Younghusband, 2000, p.18 ) and it is noted that the British army sent a force to Portugal in 1808 to expel French from Lisbon, and they remained for about 6 years.
It also is noted that the cavalry was badly armed and in June 1809, about 6000 swords were received from England along with other equipment. The swords were M1796 for both light and heavy cavalry.
The corrosion on this example does seem dramatic, but as noted, much depends on the environment in which it is encased.
It is definitely hard to tell the British M1796 light cavalry sabre from the Blucher sabre M1811 of Germany.....any key hints out there on telling the difference?