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Old 2nd July 2020, 03:52 PM   #1
shayde78
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Default Persian(?) blade and incongruent hilt

Hi everyone,

I wanted to seek comments on the item below. If pressed, I would have to classify this as a Persian blade. I know the exact naming can be a point of contention, so I will simply leave it at "blade" and let all of you weigh in on the correct nomenclature. Having never actually had one of these in hand before, I am surprised at the dimensions. Seeing pictures in books, they seem much smaller, but this size seems consistent with knives intended for serious purpose. This also has a thickened point that I tried to show in one of the pictures.

I won't even hazard a guess as to age, other than somewhere between 1-2020 CE. If you can narrow it down to somewhere in that 2000 year range, that would be appreciated

The hilt, however, seems poorly matched to this blade. It would seem the shoulders of the blade, as currently mounted, between the ricasso and the hilt, should rest inside the hilt itself lending an extra level of stability to the construction. This leads me to conclude the hilt is a much later addition and was crafted by someone not overly familiar with such knives. Of course, I could just be revealing my inexperience and be completely wrong.

The scabbard, despite its current coloration is steel/iron. It still has a ton of rust on it, but I wanted to specify it isn't brass. I am curious if it would have originally been lined with wood, but as of now, it is all metal. You'll notice it is missing the terminal finial.

As always, all comments are welcome!

Specifications:
Overall length - 17.5" (43.5cm)
Blade length - from tip to shoulder 12" (30.5cm)
Hilt length - 5" (13cm)
Blade width at shoulder - 2" (5.25cm)

Thanks everyone
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Old 2nd July 2020, 04:10 PM   #2
Bob A
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I'd be slightly inclined toward India as the origin, based entirely on the vegetal ornamentation - Persian blades are often seen with animal representation. Steel scabbard also seems Indian to me.

I agree the hilt is a replacement. Huge blade! I'd figure a date range in the last century or two.

I have no basis for any of the above; uninformed opinion.
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Old 2nd July 2020, 04:46 PM   #3
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This is a late Qajar period Persian dagger. The handle would have originally been just like the scabbard. Same type of decoration and would have been all steel as well. If you Google Persian Qajar all steel dagger you will see similar examples. Late 19th century for blade and scabbard and handle replaced at a later time.
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Old 2nd July 2020, 07:21 PM   #4
ariel
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I am with RSWORD: khanjar, late Qajar, replaced handle, original scabbard.
My only hesitation: some pics of the blade are suspicious for being wootz-y.
The blade is patinated and the issue can be resolved only by polishing and etching at least a decent size window.
If it is wootz, I would change my guess to "potentially Zand-eariler Qajar".
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Old 2nd July 2020, 07:24 PM   #5
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Indian!

Both, blade and hilt. 20th century.

I have yet to see a Persian khanjar with double concave fullers and reinforced tip!
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Old 2nd July 2020, 11:13 PM   #6
Battara
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Indian khanjars do not have a forte and scabbard chiseled like this. I'm with RSword on this one entirely.

Better pictures would be more helpful though.
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Old 4th July 2020, 11:24 PM   #7
shayde78
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Thank you everyone for the comments so far!
I'm glad to see there isn't a clear consensus as I enjoy the opportunity to learn from the knowledgeable back and forth.
Send like the sum of opinions is leaning towards Persian, late 19th, early 20th. Marius' thought has merit. I have seen examples with curved fullers being attributed to the 1800s. However, the thickened tip doesn't seem particularly useful if the knife is used in a clawing, slashing manner (like a karambet). However, this is not an area of expertise, and others may provide examples that challenge this. I know thickened tips are kind of pervasive on weapons from this region.
As for the suggestion of wootz, I thought the same thing viewing the auction photographs based on the pattern of oxidation. Upon close look, I don't think it is, but I may polish a section for a better view.

Once again, thank you, and I look forward to seeing additional thoughts.

Last edited by shayde78 : 4th July 2020 at 11:50 PM.
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Old 5th July 2020, 07:05 AM   #8
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Persian, 18th century and not wootz?!

I may agree with the Persian attribution but definitely not 18th century.
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Last edited by mariusgmioc : 5th July 2020 at 05:49 PM.
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