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Old 17th October 2017, 10:37 AM   #1
eftihis
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Default Ottoman silver sword with european blade

Hello, thiw extremely long sword with an ottoman silver repousse scabbard, has a european blade which looks like a French blade of the Napoleonic date. On the back of the blade there is a date which look to me like 1823. MAybe is 1843?
Do you know what is the type and origin of the blade?
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Old 17th October 2017, 01:49 PM   #2
Norman McCormick
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Hi Eftihis,
Blade profile looks to me like the French 1822 Pattern Light Cavalry Sabre for Troopers/Officers. I see the date as 1823. There probably should be more script before the date giving the armoury where the blade was manufactured and possibly inspectors stamps at or near the ricasso.
Regards,
Norman.
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Old 17th October 2017, 08:07 PM   #3
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Hi
I'm very jealous you have always beautiful pistols and swords!
Norman is right, so is it a sword from the uprising?
Best,
Kubur
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Old 17th October 2017, 08:28 PM   #4
Jim McDougall
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Perfectly spotted Norman!!! I agree.
Kubur, which uprising?
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Old 17th October 2017, 10:33 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
Perfectly spotted Norman!!! I agree.
Kubur, which uprising?



Hi Jim,
The Greek Uprising also known as the Greek War of Independence 1821/29
Regards,
Norman.
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Old 18th October 2017, 06:38 AM   #6
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Hi Jim, as Norman said, I suspect Eftihis to be Greek and to collect Greek weapons...
Eftihis please look at Morea expedition, you will have the list of the French regiments sent to help the Greeks.
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Old 18th October 2017, 08:13 AM   #7
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Ηello, thanks for your input! I am Greek but i do not collect only Greek items, and this sword i do not describe it as "Greek". I was wondering how this european blade ended up with this ottoman silver scabbard. A possibility could be for the blade to be a trophy from a battle and dressed like that by the new owner so that to treasure his booty. Another possibility is that these blades became "trade blades" at some time and for some reason was prefered by the owner of this sword. But is an intentional, well thought choice, because the owner spend a lot to dress this blade with such a nice and long silver scabbard.
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Old 18th October 2017, 04:12 PM   #8
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Eftihi,

I have a Ottoman shamshir with the identical blade. I'll try to post pictures later. Different scabbard though.
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Old 18th October 2017, 05:16 PM   #9
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Norman and Kubur, thank you so much for those explanations. It is interesting to see weapons which may be related to that conflict which brought in diverse international participation. In realizing this was the Greek War for Independence, I am reminded of a friend in Greece who was seeking some of the 'rat tail' pistols, many of which were of that period.

It seems these French blades were very much sought in colonial contexts and were typically acquired through native interactions with forces or of course sometimes diplomatic situations. I do not believe they were ever a part of the trade blade circumstances which were typically German, with lesser instances of Spanish or Italian prior to their dominance.

Actually the Ottomans were in degree already beginning their interest in 'westernization' which culminated in very notable changes in styling of their weaponry such as the Ottoman pistol type hilts with knuckleguard sabres.

It is always tempting to think of these incongruent combinations of blade and mounts as having been the blade captured in battle. These may have been spoils of pitched combat and picked up later, or weapons either left in emplacements or abandoned. In less combative circumstances such as in France's colonial occupation in North Africa, troops are believed to have 'traded' their weapons in 'recreational' activities and claimed them lost. This well known but apocryphal lore is of course known with forces of many countries, and simply may be one of many possibilities.

Whatever the case, the result is a most attractive and exotic sabre probably worn proudly by an officer, who very well might have been French. As we know, they were quite enamored by Ottoman style hilts after the Napoleonic Egyptian campaigns and the Mamluks, and their officers often wore these style sabres.
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Old 18th October 2017, 06:21 PM   #10
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Remember also that there was a French presence in the Ionian islands and the Western coast of mainland Greece during the Napoleonic era. In fact, after the British captured the Ionian islands from the French they raised two regiments of Greek troops ("Duke of York's Royal Greek Light Infantry') and assaulted the French in what is now the Island of Lefkada (then "Santa Maura"). These Greek troops also participated in Lord Bentinck's Sicilian and Genoese campaign of 1814.
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Old 18th October 2017, 09:47 PM   #11
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Well, i have also another sword which i believe saw use during the Greek revolution. It is a "pala type" handle sword with a british cavalry blade of 1898. How this British blade ended here is also unknown!
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Old 18th October 2017, 10:07 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by digenis
Remember also that there was a French presence in the Ionian islands and the Western coast of mainland Greece during the Napoleonic era. In fact, after the British captured the Ionian islands from the French they raised two regiments of Greek troops ("Duke of York's Royal Greek Light Infantry') and assaulted the French in what is now the Island of Lefkada (then "Santa Maura"). These Greek troops also participated in Lord Bentinck's Sicilian and Genoese campaign of 1814.


Yes but the blade is from 1823, post Napoleonic...
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Old 18th October 2017, 10:16 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
N

It is always tempting to think of these incongruent combinations of blade and mounts as having been the blade captured in battle.

Whatever the case, the result is a most attractive and exotic sabre probably worn proudly by an officer, who very well might have been French.

As we know, they were quite enamored by Ottoman style hilts after the Napoleonic Egyptian campaigns and the Mamluks, and their officers often wore these style sabres.


Like Jim I don't believe here that the blade was a trophee or captured.

I think that the French blade comes from the Morea expedition.
About the French expedition

" A transport fleet protected by warships was organised; sixty ships sailed in all. Equipment, victuals, munitions and 1,300 horses had to be brought over, as well as arms, munitions and money for the Greek provisional government of John Capodistria."

The French came with arms, maybe guns maybe swords...

I don't believe that the sword was made for a French officier.
Because the French and the Brits liked Mamluk blades like those brought from Egypt.
And its very unlikely that French or Brits will use their own blades with Ottoman mounts, scabbard and hilts.
For me it's a Greek sword "a la turc" with a French blade.
Just look at Elgood's book to see that Greek swords were similar to the Ottoman Turkish ones...
Hopefully I was clear enough this time...
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Old 19th October 2017, 02:51 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubur
Yes but the blade is from 1823, post Napoleonic...


True assuming the blade ID is correct.
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Old 19th October 2017, 11:38 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by digenis
True assuming the blade ID is correct.


Looks right to me
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