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Old 5th October 2020, 07:25 PM   #1
Gonzoadler
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Default Help with translation - Kard with jade hilt

Hello,
I have this ottoman Kard since some years, it was my first bigger "investment" for an edged weapon and I'm still proud to own it. Unfortunately I'm not able to decypher the text on the wootz blade. Maybe someone could help me?
It would be very interesting for me.
I'm not sure if there is a year/date in the text but I estimate the age about 1800.
The velvet scabbard has nice silver mountings. Especially the hilt is interesting. It is made of double-coloured jade.

Length overall: 35cm
Without scabbard: 31cm
Blade: 18.5cm

Regards,
Robin
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Old 6th October 2020, 03:05 AM   #2
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I think there is 1010 in the middle of the inscription and “Allah” at the end.
Kwiatek to the rescue!

Why do you think it is Ottoman? I would guess North Indian: there are quite a lot of those with gold-koftgari ferrules.
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Old 6th October 2020, 08:36 AM   #3
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Looks North Indian Mughal work. Hopefully someone can translate.
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Old 6th October 2020, 10:15 AM   #4
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Yep, North Indian and at least the blade from late 18th to early 19th century.

It definitely would benefit from some cleaning and etching.

Very nice piece!

PS: While the cartouche may look somehow Ottoman, it has to be remembered that this type of cartouches were common for the whole Ottoman-Persian-Mughal area. Also the cartouche, as well as the scabbard may be later works.

However, like Ariel has noticed, the front bolster with koftgari is rather typical Indian and gives a very good indication about the origins of the knife.
Also the fine watering pattern of the blade may be an indication of its Indian origin but that would become clearer with new etching.
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Old 6th October 2020, 02:12 PM   #5
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Hello,
thank you for your answers.
For me it is an ottoman Kard because of the shape (like a kitchen knife) and ottoman hallmarks on the silver mountings. One looks like a Tughra of an ottoman sultan. In my opinion the Koftgari is not especially indian. Furthermore there are some decoration elements, like a shell at the tip of the ferrule, which I often seen at ottoman daggers.
I don't think that the scabbard is much younger than the other parts of the dagger.

But the most important question is: What says the inscription?
Thank you ariel for your first advice.

I add some more photos of the inscription, the hallmarks and other details of the dagger. I hope they are helpful and nice to see.

Regards
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Old 6th October 2020, 02:13 PM   #6
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More photos:
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Old 6th October 2020, 02:15 PM   #7
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and more :
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Old 6th October 2020, 08:41 PM   #8
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Hmm, because of ariels hint I see that the inscription is turned upside down.
I add one more photo...
Any comments are welcome
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Old 7th October 2020, 07:37 AM   #9
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Thank you for the additional photos!

You are right. The scabbard appears to have the Turgha mark which makes it quite certainly Ottoman.

Also the wootz patterning, with longer streaks (see photo) does not look like the typical Indian (which tends to have finer and more uniform watering pattern) but Persian, so the knife might indeed be Ottoman (since many Ottoman weapons were made using Persian blades).

Yet, the front bolster looks so much Indian...
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Last edited by mariusgmioc : 7th October 2020 at 09:59 AM.
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Old 8th October 2020, 12:10 PM   #10
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I have completed some missing parts of the Koftgari. I hope that helps. Now I'm not sure if there is a year in the text.
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Old 10th October 2020, 08:49 PM   #11
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The inscription on the blade is in Arabic and reads

لا اله الا الله

"There is no god but God“

The stamps are an Ottoman sultanic tughra as well as a sahh (“true, correct”) mark, both of which were used as assay marks for silver. With a very detailed close-up I might be able to read the tughra
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Old 11th October 2020, 09:11 PM   #12
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Thank you very much, kwiatek!
I really appreciate that.
Here are some close ups of the Tughra. The hallmark isn't very sharp and my pictures too (cheap camera) but maybe you can read something.
The better mark is on the mouth plate, there is one more on the ferule.

Regards
Robin
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Old 11th October 2020, 09:19 PM   #13
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Not so close:
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Old 10th November 2020, 08:30 PM   #14
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Thanks for the extra photos. Unfortunately they are too worn to read from the photos - I would need a magnifying glass and Garo Kürkman’s book on Ottoman silver marks to identify them. They are for sure 19th-c. though
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Old 13th November 2020, 11:23 AM   #15
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Hello kwiatek,

yes, the hallmark is really hard to read.
Thanks for your help.
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