Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Upstate New York, USA
Need to collect a few more nail trimmings
Dom, I appreciate your courage in stepping forward! Your conclusion of "Indo-Persian, even more Indo than Persian" is exactly what I had come to think about this axe, and like you, I was not really very comfortable with that attribution.
In due course I had consigned it in my mind as "eccentric Indian Raj-era souvenir." Of course, the considerable weight would be the opposite of what one would expect from this attribution and the decoration might also be a bit too restrained. And, of course, the very plain wooden handle would also not fit this scenario. Dull would be consistent, however.
I had also wondered about it being made as an executioner's axe - the mass would be good for that - but then dull becomes a big problem. And, of course, with the help of your translations, such a purpose would appear to be inconsistent with the inscriptions.
Needless to say, I suppose, is that the museum's attribution for their very similar axe is "none of those above." I am still waiting to hear back from them as to any information they might have on the provenance of their example and I will use that as an excuse to see if any other forum members develop the courage to put a fingernail forth...