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Old 12th November 2008, 08:35 PM   #1
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Default Turkish Pala with european ? blade

This Pala has a high quality,very sharp, non-damascus blade, which rolls perfectly into scabbard. It was definitely born this way, with this blade.
The blade seems european, does anyone recognise this mark?
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Old 12th November 2008, 11:34 PM   #2
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Try here ... nothing to loose.

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Old 12th November 2008, 11:51 PM   #3
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I bow to the greater expierience of others but it looks like a combined English Crown & broad arrow army property stamp to me.

I cant recall an upside down arrow before though. Thats very strange to my eye.

ill have a look through my references over the next few days though.

Skennertons is worth a shot.

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Old 14th November 2008, 05:08 AM   #4
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While I dont have access to Skennerton ("The Broad Arrow", 2001), I'm with Spiral, I don't recall seeing the 'broad arrow' combined with the crown, which appears indeed a British government view mark. The blade on this appears to be the M1796 British light cavalry blade, so the marking seems well placed. Prior to 1855 the broad arrow mark was used, but most equipment marked BO(board of ordnance) with the arrow.
Brian Robson ("Swords of the British Army" London, 1975) notes on p.191, that from 1796 onwards swords from whatever source were inspected at the Tower, and view marks began initially as a crown over a number. He states further that "...on many pattern 1796 swords, the view marks are not readily discernable: but whether this is because they were never stamped on or because they have disappeared with cleaning or refurbishing is not easy to determine".
By 1820, these markings were faithfully marked and procedures well set, but perhaps this M1796 blade was one of the earlier stamped issues and with the combined crown and venerable broad arrow (used on British ordnance since the time of Henry VIII).

The hilt and mounts on this weapon are certainly Ottoman, and if I am correct, correspond to Egyptian furbished swords of mid to latter 19th century ( from the sharply peaked faceted form on the guard and scabbard ring mounts). It is tempting to consider that the blade was in Egypt earlier in the 19th century during the British campaigns, however these blades remained around as surplus in colonial regions through the century and into the 20th. It is interesting to note also that British and French officers so favored the Mamluk sabres of this form in the Egyptian campaigns, they often adopted these hilts as fighting sabres. In 1831, the British initiated the M1831 mameluke hilt sabre for general officers in this style, though the hilts were ivory.

In these mounts, and with this potentially early marked M1796, a most interesting sabre, though not technically a pala.

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