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Old 27th April 2020, 05:40 PM   #1
GrozaB
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Default Weird Mameluke sword

Picked up very strange Mameluke sword. Hilt is ivory with steel cross guard, I think is British mid 19th. But blade... Blade is straight, 33" long, 1.4" wide and 1/4" thick. Blade was brutally cleaned and I can see some small forging flaws, so I can assume it is hand forged, not machine made. Another thing is scabbards. It fits the blade perfectly and I'm pretty sure it is original to the blade. Scabbard looks 100% British to me. But I can't remember any 19th century British sword with such blade! At first I was thinking it is Swedish, they love this form, but all Swedish blades I know is diamond shaped and this one is convex...
Sword itself is most likely later compilation, but what is the blade origin? Maybe Scottish? Аny thoughts? Comments?
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Old 27th April 2020, 08:02 PM   #2
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Found another one, kind of similar, clearly based on Scottish blade
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Old 27th April 2020, 08:09 PM   #3
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The blade is a dead ringer for a circa 1840s U.S. militia officer's sword in my collection. The Ames-made blade is convex, the single central fuller appears to be the same length and breadth, and the drag on the scabbard seems to be identical. Yours lacks etching, but otherwise it seems a good fit.
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Old 27th April 2020, 08:33 PM   #4
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Hm... You can be right on it. But all militia sword I saw had way smaller blades - usually 25-29" long, about 1-1.25" wide and twice lighter. This one is pretty massive and heavy - 2lbs without scabbard. Also scabbards on militia sword usually bit different - leather or brass with 3 rings.
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Old 27th April 2020, 08:43 PM   #5
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I believe the shorter militia swords with leather scabbards are generally for NCOs. Hotspur knows these very well, so perhaps he can address them.

The officer's sword I posted has a 31 inch blade that is 1 inch wide at the ricasso. The narrow central fuller is about 12 inches long.

Both this example and another "full size" US militia officer's sword in my collection have all-metal scabbards.

Here's an ACW-vintage shot of Lt. Col. Charles Norton wearing the same sword.
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Old 27th April 2020, 09:01 PM   #6
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Again, you probably right on blade origin. The central fuller on my blade is bit under 9". And whole sword handles like cutting, not thrusting weapon. Of course you can thrust with this one, but it is bit heavy and slow for the job. In handles more like palash or backsword.
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Old 27th April 2020, 11:01 PM   #7
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This style of blade was common om British 1798 pattern basket hilt swords and 1796 heavy cavalry officer dress swords. I haven't come across one mounted on a mameluke hilt before.
Cheers,
Bryce
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Old 27th April 2020, 11:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryce
This style of blade was common om British 1798 pattern basket hilt swords and 1796 heavy cavalry officer dress swords. I haven't come across one mounted on a mameluke hilt before.
Cheers,
Bryce

You nailed it!
I completely forgot it was two different 1796 Heavy Calvary swords...
Quick google search and I found bunch with very similar blades(31-34" long) and absolutely the same scabbard. Mystery solved, thank you very much!
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Old 28th April 2020, 07:36 AM   #9
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Yes, the 1796 HC dress swords. In turn copied by the US almost entirely as our 1832-1833 general officer sword with left overs in turn adopted by centurion pommel militia officer swords with a short ricasso and fuller. Not to be confused with lesser militia swords (which became quite skinny after the 1860s), Another common denominator of the slim fullered broadsword blade of the 1796 HC dress lineage were the pistol grip US militia swords and some eagle head pommel swords. My own eagle baby broadsword blade is slimmer still and no fuller but with a short ricasso.

Cheers
GC
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Old 29th April 2020, 12:01 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotspur
Yes, the 1796 HC dress swords. In turn copied by the US almost entirely as our 1832-1833 general officer sword with left overs in turn adopted by centurion pommel militia officer swords with a short ricasso and fuller. Not to be confused with lesser militia swords (which became quite skinny after the 1860s), Another common denominator of the slim fullered broadsword blade of the 1796 HC dress lineage were the pistol grip US militia swords and some eagle head pommel swords. My own eagle baby broadsword blade is slimmer still and no fuller but with a short ricasso.

Cheers
GC

So, what is your opinion - my sword has British, US roots or it is just some later compilation?
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Old 29th April 2020, 05:30 AM   #11
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I wouldn't necessarily claim the blade from the 1796 era (possibly earlier) but the assembly (imo) was more likely to be English or European in unification.

Cheers
GC
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Old 29th April 2020, 09:44 AM   #12
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That 'one ringed' scabbard, if that is what it is, would be exceedingly rare, if not unknown, with a British sword.
Regards
Richard
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Old 29th April 2020, 02:01 PM   #13
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It's just a missing ring
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