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Old 19th January 2017, 11:15 AM   #1
CutlassCollector
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Default French Système 1833

This French boarding axe is on display at the Marine Museum in Paris, it is the only one I have ever seen which is fully government marked with Châtellerault engraving and poinçons. The poinçons date it to between 1836 and 1837.

The 1833 Système of naval weapons introduced a revised AN IX cutlass, a pistol, a pike, a boarding knife and this model of axe. The first cutlasses were produced in 1835 and the first boarding knife in 1837.

The anchor mark that is often seen is the acceptance stamp of the French Navy presumably for axes made by contractors. It is not known how many axes were produced by Châtellerault. So I would be interested to know if anyone has ever seen a French boarding axe with these markings or the remains of them. It is doubtful that the engraving would have survived long in 'the wild' but I would think that the indentations of the poinçons would remain visible much longer.

Regards CC
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Old 23rd January 2017, 03:43 PM   #2
Terry K
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I've looked at a few boarding axes and usually have a hard time finding any markings
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Old 26th January 2017, 04:04 PM   #3
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Hi Terry,

Yes that is often the case, even the anchor mark is relatively rare and that's why this axe seemed so unusual.
I think this axe may have been a prototype or kept as a 'pattern' but I have no supporting evidence for this, only the lack of any others that show they were made at Châtellerault.

Regards, CC
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