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Old 22nd December 2018, 01:45 PM   #31
Kubur
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Quote:
Originally Posted by motan
Hello all,
I agree with some of Kubur's and A.alnakkas' comments, but disagree with Montagnard's dagger is a late 20th c. or Early 21st c. dagger made exclusively for the souvenir market.
As for Majdali daggers, it is true that early pieces are generally of better quality, but this is certainly not 1:1 relationship.


Hi Motan,
I was waiting for your comment.
Of course I agree with alnakas and you and all your comments.
I disagree with you about the date, I think you're unfair, it's not a late 20th c.
Look at the scabbard it doesnt look like a 2 thick brass pieces but more like a wooden one with brass sheat.
I also disagree with myself and my comment about engraved or acid etched, old ones are also acid etched...
Motan you were looking for a very good and old majdali and i was looking for the same thing. I think i found one and i didnt find anything similar on the web. But I found some Ottoman knives 18th c. with the same design. What I found is not from the 18th c. but its a very strange bird and most probably from the 19th c...
Kubur
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Old 22nd December 2018, 02:53 PM   #32
motan
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Hi Kubur,
Thanks for your reply, and please show me what you found. I know some things these daggers, but not nearly enough to draw a general picture on their development.
As I see it, you already have a very early example - if what you showed in your 2016 post on this thread is from your collection. The sign of old ones are the copper plates on the hilt with decoration and writing. This type developed into the general family of broad, heavy blade daggers with etching near the hilt. The other type, with fullers, like the one in my previous post, came a bit later. Both type were made in Majdal Shams, but perhaps in other places too. There are several types of Syrian daggers that share some characteristics with Majdali-type, but are distinct (see pics for 2 examples). The oldest dates on Majdalis are from 1900, but they do not appear to be the oldest ones. So, the Majdali type probably developed in the late 19th c., based on similar types already made in Syria
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Old 22nd December 2018, 04:31 PM   #33
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As it happens, I have the example from Artzi's site and Motan's post above.
Two pics to show otherwise unseen features:
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Last edited by Bob A : 22nd December 2018 at 04:43 PM.
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Old 22nd December 2018, 06:18 PM   #34
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Default Back to the future.............

Here is a thread from 10 years ago relating to a straight bladed Syrian? dagger I once owned. http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=6959
Thought it worth to throw this one in to the mix again.
Stu
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Old 22nd December 2018, 06:48 PM   #35
colin henshaw
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Here is a nice example I had a few years back.
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Old 22nd December 2018, 08:24 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kahnjar1
Here is a thread from 10 years ago relating to a straight bladed Syrian? dagger I once owned. http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=6959
Thought it worth to throw this one in to the mix again.
Stu


Hi Stu,
One of the best that i saw on this forum.
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Old 22nd December 2018, 08:32 PM   #37
Kubur
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Quote:
Originally Posted by motan
Hi Kubur,
Thanks for your reply, and please show me what you found.


I will, it's always nice to tchat with open mind forum members, ready to exchange and share experiences. After all it should be always like that on this forum if we have a common interest or shared passion...
I think that you are too pessimistic with a late 19th c.date. In Buttin you have some from the late 19th c. and I'm sure that you can find some even earlier, but I agree with you not before the 19th c.
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Old 23rd December 2018, 03:20 PM   #38
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Default Engraved inscription???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubur
I disagree with you about the date, I think you're unfair, it's not a late 20th c.
Look at the scabbard it doesnt look like a 2 thick brass pieces but more like a wooden one with brass sheat.
I also disagree with myself and my comment about engraved or acid etched, old ones are also acid etched...
Kubur


Hi Kubur,

your assumption is correct: it is a wooden scabbard with brass sheat.
I conclude that you stick to your earlier statement, that "it is a Syrian Magdali or Majdali, probably 1930-40, during the French mandate" - right?

Also: Do you know what the engraved inscription means?

Thx,
Montagnard
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Old 23rd December 2018, 08:02 PM   #39
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Hello again,
Yes Kubur. I agree with you. It is very possible that production started earlier, I just don't have proof. It is rare to see Majdali type daggers in a book. Can you produce a larger picture? Dates on old Majdalis is quite common, but consistently start at around 1900. See first picture - clearly 1318 Hijri - 1900 Gregorian.
Bob A, this is indeed the very same dagger. Artzi says in his site that they are all from Majdal Shams. What I think is that the ones he sells are indeed all from there, but other production sites do exist. Good ones are becoming rare, so a good purchase.
Colin, yours is a good and old example of the heavy blade - oval hilt type, but the decoration style is slightly different from most, with many vertical elements on the hilt. I have seen several and they may be from one workshop. I have no idea what it says about their origin. A similar style in pic 2
Stuart, yours is indeed a unique example, probably made on special order. Very high quality work and an a-typical but very good scabbard in Ottoman style. Straight blades are known, but rare. I know you don't have it anymore, but do you happen to have a good picture of the back of the hilt? It is signed by the maker and I think I know who he is - Iskander. This workshop made top-notch pieces in the round handle/fullered blade style. I recognize the decorative element in the middle of the hilt. I have seen several signed examples - see pictures
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Old 24th December 2018, 03:34 PM   #40
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I'm not an Arabic speaker but I think it is the Shihada
Top - la illahu illa allah - There is no God but Allah
Bottom - Muhamad rasool Allah - Mohammed is the prophet of Allah
Regards
Richard
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Old 24th December 2018, 06:04 PM   #41
motan
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Yes Richard, you are right. It is a very common inscription on blades and the writing is so clear that even I can read it.
As for the age of the dagger, it is hard to be sure, but it is safe to assume it is later than 1950.
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Old 30th December 2018, 08:46 PM   #42
Kubur
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Quote:
Originally Posted by motan
Hello again,
Yes Kubur. I agree with you. It is very possible that production started earlier, I just don't have proof. It is rare to see Majdali type daggers in a book. Can you produce a larger picture? Dates on old Majdalis is quite common, but consistently start at around 1900. See first picture - clearly 1318 Hijri - 1900 Gregorian.

Stuart, yours is indeed a unique example, probably made on special order. Very high quality work and an a-typical but very good scabbard in Ottoman style. Straight blades are known, but rare. I know you don't have it anymore, but do you happen to have a good picture of the back of the hilt? It is signed by the maker and I think I know who he is - Iskander. This workshop made top-notch pieces in the round handle/fullered blade style. I recognize the decorative element in the middle of the hilt. I have seen several signed examples - see pictures


Hi Motan,

Here is the beast, despite many 19th c. features i think this jambiya majdali is from the 20th c. (1900-1914) maybe from your iskander... same fabric on the scabbard...
with nice Ottoman emboidery, amazing blade,and amazing enameled hilt with pictures of al aqsa and the dome of the rock... Is it possible that your Iskander was from Jerusalem?

Enjoy
Kubur
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Old 3rd January 2019, 10:24 AM   #43
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This one should be added to the discussion...
http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=10838
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Old 5th January 2019, 08:59 AM   #44
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Hi Kubur,
Surely a unique find. The hilt with beads is an Ottoman feature known from small daggers, where the the beads are either from stone/amber inlaid with gold, or with emaille decoration. This style has been imitated in Syrian and North African daggers.
As for the dagger itself, I think it is another one made on special order. I tend to think it is bit later than very early 20th c., maybe the 1920's. The use of white metal in the hilt is new to me - always brass in other daggers.
The blade is of excellent quality for this type of daggers, but I think that the fuller is engraved, not forged. The scabbard is in Ottoman style, but the zig-zag decoration is very Syrian/Palestinian.
As for the maker, you may very well be right. The precise and polished finish of the horn and bone parts are typical of Iskander (Skandar) and we know he made special pieces of the rounded hilt style, probably to specific customers. I looked at an earlier thread where Stuart's dagger was introduced and saw his signature on the hilt.
As I mentioned before, Skandar, the Arab version of Alexander, is a name given mostly to Christians. We know that some of the important dagger makers in Majdal Shams were Christians, but they gradually moved to other part of Syria following the great Druze revolt in 1925-1927 and probably kept making daggers elsewhere.
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