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Old 19th September 2017, 10:22 AM   #1
thinreadline
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Default 3 African daggers for ID

I assume these are Western Sahel or thereabouts .... shown to me by an old school friend and according to family tradition , brought back by an uncle
in the 1950s when he was in the merchant navy . The human faced dagger grip I have not encountered before. .... it appears to have been fashioned from an old carving knife . Your comments would be valued thank you.
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Old 19th September 2017, 10:53 AM   #2
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I would say Hawsa, central Sudan, but I'm not a specialist...

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Old 19th September 2017, 12:37 PM   #3
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The smaller pair are certainly Hausa, not sure about the other one.
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Old 20th September 2017, 12:42 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iain
The smaller pair are certainly Hausa, not sure about the other one.

thanks Iain
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Old 20th September 2017, 07:23 AM   #5
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The dagger with the carved face to the hilt is from the Sudan, probably made for selling to Europeans.
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Old 20th September 2017, 07:50 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colin henshaw
The dagger with the carved face to the hilt is from the Sudan, probably made for selling to Europeans.


thank you Colin,, how interesting , have you come across them before then ? Any idea of period?
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Old 20th September 2017, 07:59 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thinreadline
thank you Colin,, how interesting , have you come across them before then ? Any idea of period?


Yes, I've seen them before, sometimes in croc scabbards, sometimes with a group of three knives in one scabbard. They are often described as "Mahdist", but I suppose they must be early 20th century. There are quite a few types of enigmatic, non-practical weapons from the Sudan area, often described as from the Mahdist period, but probably later.
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Old 20th September 2017, 10:56 AM   #8
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Quote:
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thanks Iain


you're welcome!
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Old 20th September 2017, 01:38 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colin henshaw
Yes, I've seen them before, sometimes in croc scabbards, sometimes with a group of three knives in one scabbard. They are often described as "Mahdist", but I suppose they must be early 20th century. There are quite a few types of enigmatic, non-practical weapons from the Sudan area, often described as from the Mahdist period, but probably later.


yes I have heard about these though not knowingly seen any , thank you .
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Old 23rd September 2017, 11:04 AM   #10
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This example was on sale recently...
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Old 23rd September 2017, 08:16 PM   #11
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I would say re. the two smaller ones: Hausa, but not typical Nigerian Hausa , more to the North (or North-West ?). And as it was said re. the human head hilt - also in 50 ties there was staff made for tourists ...
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Old 23rd September 2017, 08:40 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Lubojacky
I would say re. the two smaller ones: Hausa, but not typical Nigerian Hausa , more to the North (or North-West ?).


Could be around Zinger or Katina?
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Old 25th September 2017, 12:03 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colin henshaw
This example was on sale recently...

this type I have seen and indeed own an example
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Old 25th September 2017, 12:05 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Lubojacky
I would say re. the two smaller ones: Hausa, but not typical Nigerian Hausa , more to the North (or North-West ?). And as it was said re. the human head hilt - also in 50 ties there was staff made for tourists ...


thanks Martin ... but what do you mean '50 ties' ?
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Old 25th September 2017, 08:09 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iain
Could be around Zinger or Katina?

I donīt know if Zinder and/or Katsina. This my guess was based on what I saw in Abuja during 4 years of work there,some time ago. It seems to me that it is more difficult to assign accurately such more or less conterporary African daggers from Sahel (and also East Africa regions), than the old daggers eg from Congo.... The local wendors usually say what one "wants to hear", or they donīt know ..., only very seldom they say something like "Yes, this knife was brought by man from (e.g.) Katsina". From this reason I always ask my friends travelling in Africa to make photos of peaple "carrying" the knife or dagger etc and to make remark where it was.

Re: "Fifties": I meant 1950s as you wrote
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Old 27th September 2017, 01:07 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Lubojacky
I donīt know if Zinder and/or Katsina. This my guess was based on what I saw in Abuja during 4 years of work there,some time ago. It seems to me that it is more difficult to assign accurately such more or less conterporary African daggers from Sahel (and also East Africa regions), than the old daggers eg from Congo.... The local wendors usually say what one "wants to hear", or they donīt know ..., only very seldom they say something like "Yes, this knife was brought by man from (e.g.) Katsina". From this reason I always ask my friends travelling in Africa to make photos of peaple "carrying" the knife or dagger etc and to make remark where it was.

Re: "Fifties": I meant 1950s as you wrote

Thank you Martin.
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