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Old 23rd February 2016, 11:46 AM   #31
ariel
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Ibrahiim,
Do you have any idea why would swordmakers in Iran call their brand of quality "Assadullah Isfaghani"? Did they just pick this moniker out of a thin air?


Usually, the titles of highest achievements carry names of remarkable individuals that were instrumental in financing the award ( Nobel Prize, Wolf Prize ) or themselves were examples of excellence in a relevant field ( Tchaikovsky or Chopin piano competitions, Lombardi Super Bowl trophy, Fields Award in mathematics , Olivier in acting etc.)
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Old 23rd February 2016, 01:20 PM   #32
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Asadula translated as " Lion of Allah " . This is not necessarily the person's name .
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Old 23rd February 2016, 03:45 PM   #33
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[QUOTE=ariel]Ibrahiim,
Do you have any idea why would swordmakers in Iran call their brand of quality "Assadullah Isfaghani"? Did they just pick this moniker out of a thin air?


Usually, the titles of highest achievements carry names of remarkable individuals that were instrumental in financing the award ( Nobel Prize, Wolf Prize ) or themselves were examples of excellence in a relevant field ( Tchaikovsky or Chopin piano competitions, Lombardi Super Bowl trophy, Fields Award in mathematics , Olivier in acting etc.)[/QUOTE

.................................................. .................................................. ....

Salaams Ariel, Yes I do. Assad Allah was a prominent folk hero in Persian lore whilst Ali known in Shi ite Iran as Assad Allah holds a position of paramount importance. Naturally both these names would be held in great esteem supporting the reasoned arguement..that these names were honorary or Iconic and allowed to create an illusion, some would say a mark of excellence...and my meaning is contained in both... on this signed blade story.
I have to say that I remain skeptical as to the actual possibility of a real person being at the sword making point faced with the mountain of evidence to the contrary..."Is it a mysterious smith or a mysterious myth" ?

Much of the above detail is drawn from http://auctionsimperial.com/om-the-...of-assad-allah/ which sets down a very comprehensive arguement in favour of the somewhat mythical aspect of the signatures on the blades.

Regards,
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.

Last edited by Ibrahiim al Balooshi : 23rd February 2016 at 04:03 PM.
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Old 23rd February 2016, 04:33 PM   #34
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Ibrahiim,
Yes, I know what Assadulla means and I have read Khorasani's book.
But why specifically Isfaghani? :-)
The very same name serving as a signature on Shah Abbas' swords, the very same name as in the "helmet" affair, the very same name mentioned as a father of Kalbeali...

My point is that there was such a real person, and after his death his name began to serve as a mark of quality and distinction. Nothing contradicting the later role, but somebody must have earned the original fame.
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Old 23rd February 2016, 07:17 PM   #35
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Isfahan was the capital of Persia. There is nothing surprising in the fact that the inscription "Isfahan" was put on the blades.

If we continue the analogy ... "Isfahan" could be the second part of the brand. How is that "Rolex" - the Swiss watch quality. It is unlikely that someone will buy watches "Rolex", if they are to be written, "Chinese quality"
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Old 23rd February 2016, 08:43 PM   #36
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mahratt - why not 'Omega or some other Swiss watch names'?

I find Ariels question quite resonable.
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Old 23rd February 2016, 08:54 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jens Nordlunde
mahratt - why not 'Omega or some other Swiss watch names'?

I find Ariels question quite resonable.


Jens, and what more iconic "brands" for the sword in the Islamic world than "The Lion of Allah", you can name?

In Spain, there were other "brands", except "Toledo", but if we talk about Spanish blades, it is the "Toledo" remember in the first place.

Last edited by mahratt : 23rd February 2016 at 09:49 PM.
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Old 24th February 2016, 09:50 AM   #38
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Default Assadullah

First, please do not forget that in the absence of irrefutable factual evidence, all our discussions are just speculations that can be very distant or very close to the historical truth.

Second, while no oppinion, even from a most reputed researcher, can be considered as ultimate truth, it is simply more likely/probable that a guy who dedicated its entire life researching this subject is closer to the truth than an amateur who spent much less time researching the subject and mostly, had access to much less first-hand resources on the topic.

Third, there is some generally factual evidence pertaining this topic that is the presence pf Assadulah Isfahani cartouche on early 17th century shamshirs.

Now, how do we know that those swords were genuinely made in the 17th century or how do we know that signatures weren't added later?!

We don't know, but we can assume with a high degree of certainty that those swords were genuinely made in 17th century based on coroborating of more historical data (like knowing with certainty that some swords belonged to certain rulers of the period) assesing the general shape and style of the sword and last but not least dating the sword wih scientific lab methods like C14.

Now knowing that the signatures weren't added later is a little bit trickier but not necessarily based on guessing. For example the technique of doing the signatures, changed in time, the style of the signatures, and the wording also changed. But there are examples of swords that can be attributed with certainty to some famous rulers of the period and those can serve as a reference when assesing other similar swords and signatures. So we can asses a sword and a signature by comparing it with another sword of confirmed origin.

Now, regarding te meaning of the signature "Assadulah Isfahani" we can speculate ad nauseam as to whether it was the name of the swordsmith, the name of the owner, or purely a talismanic symbol, withot recahing a conclusion.

However, I believe that the asumption it represents the name of the original swordsmith as mostly probable. The mere presence of other signature-names, like Kalb-Ali or Zaman Isfahani, tend to dismiss the idea that the signatures have purely talismanic meaning. If they were purely talismanic, then why AFTER Assadulah appeared the other names-signatures? Then why te attribute "Isfahani" which clearly relates to the geographical location and it was a common attribute to many Persian names at the time?! To me it seems that adding a geographical locator to a purely talismanic text, doesn't make too much sense. Then what about the swords bearing the clear wording "work of Kalb-Ali?"

Last, I would like to draw an analogy with several other known examples in the field. The oldest and probably best known would be the case of the "Vlfberht" swords. While this example still stirrs much debate related to the meaning of the inscription, the case of "Tomas Ayale Toledo" is quite explicit as it can certainly be associated with the name of an original master swordsmith who was carried on by his followers, to the point where it became like a quality seal and become used by other, unrelated smiths as well. There are also many such examples in the field of Japanese swords where entire schools with activity spanning over a few centuries signed with the name of the original, founding master swordsmith.
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Old 24th February 2016, 10:15 AM   #39
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mariusgmioc, thank you for the interesting thoughts.

I have only one question. Do we have at least one evidence of the existence of master Assadula Isfahani of Persian manuscripts of the 17th century?
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Old 24th February 2016, 10:32 AM   #40
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~ it became like a quality seal and become used by other, unrelated smiths as well. There are also many such examples in the field of Japanese swords where entire schools with activity spanning over a few centuries signed with the name of the original, founding master swordsmith.[/QUOTE]

Salaams mariusgmioc The first half of your text dealt with the likelihood that the Persian Swords in question were signed by a real person of that signature...The rest outlined above goes the other way.? It does however nicely lay out the essence of a signature as a quality seal and the analogy with a Japanese masters seal going on beyond his death for centuries is also relevant ...It should be considered however that the Persian predicament was different to the Ulfbehrt and the reasons for having these Persian dignitaries as sword signatures does not mean they were actual people ... but were honoured in Persian history, thus, if we are looking for a quality seal we have it right here.

Regards,
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.

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Old 24th February 2016, 10:50 AM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Ibrahiim,
Yes, I know what Assadulla means and I have read Khorasani's book.
But why specifically Isfaghani? :-)
The very same name serving as a signature on Shah Abbas' swords, the very same name as in the "helmet" affair, the very same name mentioned as a father of Kalbeali...

My point is that there was such a real person, and after his death his name began to serve as a mark of quality and distinction. Nothing contradicting the later role, but somebody must have earned the original fame.



Salaams Ariel. I never querried if you knew Assad Allahs name nor did I ask if you had read Khorasanis book...nor would I since your knowledge in this field is respected ...Why would I ask that?...

The discussion is whether or not these people were real sword smiths...or associated with the making of the swords?...

Other than the actual signatures there is no proof so far. I don't think there was any question of anyone being tricked or fooled by this since it was simply a badge of distinction and quality only. Further more if there was such a person or persons and they were prolific in churning out swords where is the historic evidence...anecdotal proof, facts or anything to point to real time people ...not Icons of the Persian Psyche...

I quote from LA Mayer who quipped Quote "The number of swords bearing the name Assad Allah is legion, so much so that it is difficult to resist the temptation to say that of the 300 swords of which he could have made during his lifetime at least 500 have found their way to Western collections alone". Unquote.

Regards,
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.
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Old 24th February 2016, 10:58 AM   #42
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Mariusgmioc,
Very cogent exposition of the problem. It constructs a logical ( albeit indirect) basis of a true existence of Assadullah as a famous swordmaker. The incident of a helmet naming him by name strongly supports the reality of his existence.

Multiple old writers living much closer to the Abbas' era refer to Assadullah as a living person. It is only recently that the trend of deconstructing him has begun.

Interestingly, the proponents of a "purely talismanic" hypothesis cannot provide a single evidence to the contrary: such as, for example , a testimony of a contemporary witness unequivocally stating that Assadullah Isfaghani was purely a legend. Instead, they construct complicated and convoluted stratagems invoking the meaning of his name, it's cognomens, ancient personalities using it as a honorary title etc, but not a single direct argument.

Occam Rule always wins: the simplest explanation is usually the correct one. But when it is supported by a direct reference ( the helmet), it becomes virtually unbeatable:-)
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Old 24th February 2016, 11:24 AM   #43
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Ibrahiim,
I did not mean you personally re. the meaning of Assadullah and my reading Khorasani's book. No offence meant or taken. BTW , my own name, Ariel, - has the same meaning in Hebrew as Assadullah in Farsi:-)))

No doubt later masters used Assadullah's name for purely pecuniary purposes. The same is true about paintings by Rembrandt, watches by Cartier, and leather bags by Versace. It does not mean that Rembrandt, Versace and Cartier did not physically exist. On the contrary, it it they and their names that gave rise to the legendary fame of the brands.
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Old 24th February 2016, 12:05 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Multiple old writers living much closer to the Abbas' era refer to Assadullah as a living person. It is only recently that the trend of deconstructing him has begun.

Interestingly, the proponents of a "purely talismanic" hypothesis cannot provide a single evidence to the contrary: such as, for example , a testimony of a contemporary witness unequivocally stating that Assadullah Isfaghani was purely a legend. Instead, they construct complicated and convoluted stratagems invoking the meaning of his name, it's cognomens, ancient personalities using it as a honorary title etc, but not a single direct argument.

Occam Rule always wins: the simplest explanation is usually the correct one. But when it is supported by a direct reference ( the helmet), it becomes virtually unbeatable:-)


I hope, will not be difficult to name those writers who say that Assadula - this is a man (sword master). And to clarify, when these authors lived. It would have been very convincing.
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Old 24th February 2016, 12:22 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mahratt
mariusgmioc, thank you for the interesting thoughts.

I have only one question. Do we have at least one evidence of the existence of master Assadula Isfahani of Persian manuscripts of the 17th century?


I do not know whether there are any contemporary documents mentioning Assadullah as being a swordsmith of the period.
But that doesn't mean that
1. such documents do not exist, or,
2. that Assadulah never existed in reality.

Do we have at least one evidence DENYING the existence of master Assadula Isfahani in Persian manuscripts of the 17th century?! (just to add a twist to your question)

Do we have any evidence that the cartouche signature appeared just like that, from thin air, for purely talismanic purposes?!

If it were purely for talismanic purposes, why don't we see it on other objects, like ceramics, armour, etc?!

You are stating that none of the 17th century pieces you saw in certain museums bear the signature cartouche. At the same time you admit that many pieces even in famous museums are wrongfully classified/dated. Then how can you be sure that the pieces you saw are accurately dated?! What if the pieces you saw are earlier pieces, prior to the apparition of Assadullah? What if they are contemporay with Assadullah but were made by diferent smiths, from different locations? What if the pieces you are referring to, were made after Assadullah but by a different workshop in a different city?

So, in the end I am restating it again: we can only SPECULATE about the subject, but some speculations seem much more probable than others.

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Old 24th February 2016, 12:41 PM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mariusgmioc
I do not know whether there are any contemporary documents mentioning Assadullah as being a swordsmith of the period.
But that doesn't mean that
1. such documents do not exist, or,
2. that Assadulah never existed in reality.

Do we have at least one evidence DENYING the existence of master Assadula Isfahani in Persian manuscripts of the 17th century?! (just to add a twist to your question)

Do we have any evidence that the cartouche signature appeared just like that, from thin air, for purely talismanic purposes?!

If it were purely for talismanic purposes, why don't we see it on other objects, like ceramics, armour, etc?!

You are stating that none of the 17th century pieces you saw in certain museums bear the signature cartouche. At the same time you admit that many pieces even in famous museums are wrongfully classified/dated. Then how can you be sure that the pieces you saw are accurately dated?! What if the pieces you saw are earlier pieces, prior to the apparition of Assadullah? What if they are contemporay with Assadullah but were made by diferent smiths, from different locations? What if the pieces you are referring to, were made after Assadullah but by a different workshop in a different city?

So, in the end I am restating it again: we can only SPECULATE about the subject, but some speculations seem much more probable than others.




It's simple, it seems to me If Asadula - a well-known person (sword master), it must be mentioned in the writings of the time when he lived (17 century). But no one can give an example of such a manuscript .... If we see this manuscript, of course I'll be the first to say that Assadula was a real person. So far, unfortunately, there are no such data.
In the absence of this evidence, all other arguments are (I think) - just "mind games"

There are real Persian sword of the 17th century. Such swords save some, but they are. And know exactly where they are stored. Neither one of them no has a cartouche "Assadula". Moreover, as I have said before, the Persian sword of the 17th century are not similar to those sabers, which we used to call "Persian Shamshir" and wherein the blade has a cartouche "Asadula".

Draw conclusions* *
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Old 24th February 2016, 02:13 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mahratt
Dear Ariel. I've done better - show the authentic record Anosov 1841, where he writes that received a wootz "Kara-Khorasan" and wootz "Taban". And you (unlike the majority of the forum) can not only read my bad translation, and real publication.

I thought, for researcher it enough

I have shown in another topic a few Shashka of Bukhara with three rivets. And I think that this is enough. Now you insist that I show Bukhara shashkas with large rivets. Perhaps you began to doubt that the shashkas, which you have shown (with small rivets) from Bukhara?
Do not worry. This is a good shashkas. I even a little jealous of you


I do not understand your point. Neither do I understand the point of inserting a photo with the grips of three different blades.

As with regards to the terms Kara Khorasan and Kara Taban, there is not a single clear description that would allow their unambiguous identification and differentiation. It is most likely they are refering to the same type of wootz steel, dark, with high contrast and large strips of of watering patterns. More exactly Kara Taban means "black base" and "Kara Khorasan" means "black Khorasan" where the first tries to describe the steel in terms of its aspect, and the second attempts to describe in terms of aspect and origin (black from Khorasan).
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Old 24th February 2016, 03:36 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mariusgmioc
First, please do not forget that in the absence of irrefutable factual evidence, all our discussions are just speculations that can be very distant or very close to the historical truth.

Second, while no oppinion, even from a most reputed researcher, can be considered as ultimate truth, it is simply more likely/probable that a guy who dedicated its entire life researching this subject is closer to the truth than an amateur who spent much less time researching the subject and mostly, had access to much less first-hand resources on the topic.

Third, there is some generally factual evidence pertaining this topic that is the presence pf Assadulah Isfahani cartouche on early 17th century shamshirs.

Now, how do we know that those swords were genuinely made in the 17th century or how do we know that signatures weren't added later?!

We don't know, but we can assume with a high degree of certainty that those swords were genuinely made in 17th century based on coroborating of more historical data (like knowing with certainty that some swords belonged to certain rulers of the period) assesing the general shape and style of the sword and last but not least dating the sword wih scientific lab methods like C14.

Now knowing that the signatures weren't added later is a little bit trickier but not necessarily based on guessing. For example the technique of doing the signatures, changed in time, the style of the signatures, and the wording also changed. But there are examples of swords that can be attributed with certainty to some famous rulers of the period and those can serve as a reference when assesing other similar swords and signatures. So we can asses a sword and a signature by comparing it with another sword of confirmed origin.

Now, regarding te meaning of the signature "Assadulah Isfahani" we can speculate ad nauseam as to whether it was the name of the swordsmith, the name of the owner, or purely a talismanic symbol, withot recahing a conclusion.

However, I believe that the asumption it represents the name of the original swordsmith as mostly probable. The mere presence of other signature-names, like Kalb-Ali or Zaman Isfahani, tend to dismiss the idea that the signatures have purely talismanic meaning. If they were purely talismanic, then why AFTER Assadulah appeared the other names-signatures? Then why te attribute "Isfahani" which clearly relates to the geographical location and it was a common attribute to many Persian names at the time?! To me it seems that adding a geographical locator to a purely talismanic text, doesn't make too much sense. Then what about the swords bearing the clear wording "work of Kalb-Ali?"

Last, I would like to draw an analogy with several other known examples in the field. The oldest and probably best known would be the case of the "Vlfberht" swords. While this example still stirrs much debate related to the meaning of the inscription, the case of "Tomas Ayale Toledo" is quite explicit as it can certainly be associated with the name of an original master swordsmith who was carried on by his followers, to the point where it became like a quality seal and become used by other, unrelated smiths as well. There are also many such examples in the field of Japanese swords where entire schools with activity spanning over a few centuries signed with the name of the original, founding master swordsmith.



These are most interesting postulations, and nicely thought out.
While I am far from any authority on the subject of these fine Islamic swords, I have gained good working understanding of many factors about them through the years. It has been my understanding that the early penchant for the naming of Islamic swords typically would allude to either where the sword was made'; the master who made it; sometimes even the place from which the steel came with occasionally the owner.

It seems this may have been a factor in the addition of the name Isfahani in the inscriptions.
To look at this in accord with the well placed analogy concerning the well known cases regarding Ulfberth and Ayala of Toledo, I think that the case of the famed ANDREA FERARA blades are probably the most descriptive of this 'brand name' phenomenon.
While there is no doubt Ayala and his son existed, the case for Ulfberth is more clouded as this may be a term possibly related to a sobriquet for a warrior, but remains debatable.
With Andrea Ferara, much more mystery in involved, and the myths perpetuated remain disputed as to whether this was a real person or not, just as with Assad Allah. The blades with this name, just as with Assad Allah, cover lifetimes in the same way, thus could not have been produced by one man. There is no supportable evidence whether in guilds, genealogical or other records, and as related in research by DeCosson , where buildings and other iconographic details are found supporting the existence of for example, the Missaglia's, none is found for Ferara.

It is far too compelling without that substantiation, the consider the possibility that Andrea (of Ferara, the Italian city) might have been an eponym for a sword of good iron/steel. That the name Andrea (Andrew) was also linked to true/good was an archaic instance of such associations.
Thus the 'name' in essence was a brand/term for good steel.
It is curious that as far as known Italian swords there are so few that are so marked, possibly only several exist.

It was not until Solingen picked up use of the name for is blades destined for Scotland, that the name became legion.

The closest thing we have to establishing Assad Allah to an actual personage is the apocryphal tale in Persian lore of the helmet, which has been mentioned here and is well noted in the article by Oliver Pinchot.

We know that Assad Allah (Lion of God) was often used to refer to Ali, and of course would be a term of the highest honor as applied in the beautifully poetic similes and metaphors of Persian lore.

As has been noted, the debate and discussion on whether or not Assad Allah was a real person or an honorific title or brand will remain elusive, just as will likely the Andrea Ferara mystery.
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Old 24th February 2016, 05:57 PM   #49
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I propose to return to the "Asadula". As I understand it, there is no Persian manuscript of the 17th century, where they write that Assadula - a real person? Do I understand correctly? Maybe I missed some new articles on this topic?
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Old 24th February 2016, 06:10 PM   #50
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And here's a Persian sword of the 17th century. Not very much like a Shamshir familiar to us, does not it?

Sorry for the bad quality of the photo. But I think - the blade shape is clearly visible.
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Old 24th February 2016, 07:16 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mahratt
I propose to return to the "Asadula". As I understand it, there is no Persian manuscript of the 17th century, where they write that Assadula - a real person? Do I understand correctly? Maybe I missed some new articles on this topic?


I very much agree! and I think anyone here who is seriously interested in further understanding of the dilemma with the case of the Assad Allah blades should definitely read:
"On the Persian Shamshir and the Signature of Assad Allah"
Arms Collecting, Vol 40 #1, Feb. 2002
as linked by Ibrahiim here in previous post or can be found online.

In this outstanding and thoroughly researched article, Oliver notes that there are no specific tests for the actual work as far as original blades attributed to him in the literature as most descriptions are lyrical and not necessarily sufficient to be supportable. It is noted that the signature on later blades seems likely the use of the name by numerous makers as quality inference. Many examples later using name and considerably inferior are clearly forgeries.

He also cites the single historical reference which though seemingly apocryphal (in my own opinion at this point) notes:
"...Shah Abbas is said to have received a helmet from the Ottoman sultan who offered a sum of money to whoever could break the helmet with a sword. No one was able to do this until a certain Asad-a sword maker nade a sword with which he cut through the helmet".
Islamic Society in Persia
A.K.S. Lambton, London , 1954
*as cited and footnoted in Oliver's paper.

It should be noted that the time of Shah Abbas was c. 1587-1628

As has been noted, dated examples of 17th century Persian swords seem quite uncommon, but generally they seem identifiable by their characteristic heavier blades. Perhaps most of these are like the example posted by Mahratt on the example with heavier blade with wide blade near tip rather than the thinner, sweeping radius of the shamshirs we are discussing.

This would seem to lend credence to the note suggesting that most of blades signed with Assad Allah and these variations seem post Shah Abbas reign.

Still, this does not eliminate the possibility the actual existence of a distinguished sword maker named Asad, as implied by the story on the helmet event, which might have been the origin of a long standing tradition which suggests reasons for the use and perpetuation of the name on swords.
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Old 24th February 2016, 07:24 PM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mahratt
I propose to return to the "Asadula". As I understand it, there is no Persian manuscript of the 17th century, where they write that Assadula - a real person? Do I understand correctly? Maybe I missed some new articles on this topic?



As I said earlier, the fact there are no documented Persian references from 17th century to a swordsmith called "Assdullah" has little if any relevance to the fact whether he existed or not.

Are there any Persian 17th century documents referring to other swordsmiths?! Sure there must have been many master swordsmiths in 17th century Persia but the fact their names are not mentioned in any document, doesn't mean they didn't exist.

As with respect to the photo you posted, it is simply one of the varieties of shapes that was used in 17th century Persia. However, this was not a typical shape for that period, since the archetypal Shamshir with its ample curvature and triangular cross-section was mostly prevalent.

On page 162 of "Arms and Armour from Iran," Mr. Khorasani gives several examples of 17th century shamshirs bearing the Assadullah name. There is even an example attributed to Shah Abbas dated 1583.

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Old 24th February 2016, 09:23 PM   #53
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Originally Posted by mariusgmioc
As I said earlier, the fact there are no documented Persian references from 17th century to a swordsmith called "Assdullah" has little if any relevance to the fact whether he existed or not.

Are there any Persian 17th century documents referring to other swordsmiths?! Sure there must have been many master swordsmiths in 17th century Persia but the fact their names are not mentioned in any document, doesn't mean they didn't exist.

As with respect to the photo you posted, it is simply one of the varieties of shapes that was used in 17th century Persia. However, this was not a typical shape for that period, since the archetypal Shamshir with its ample curvature and triangular cross-section was mostly prevalent.

On page 162 of "Arms and Armour from Iran," Mr. Khorasani gives several examples of 17th century shamshirs bearing the Assadullah name. There is even an example attributed to Shah Abbas dated 1583.


Asadula (if it was a real person) - this is not a simple wizard. If Assadula - a real person, a great master of the sword. This wizard necessarily had to fall into the manuscripts. But no manuscripts, where his name is mentioned.
Now Shamshir from the book "Arms and Armour from Iran," Mr. Khorasani . They have no 100% provenance. What Shamshir from the book "Arms and Armour from Iran," Mr. Khorasani are in the museum in Tehran - not guarantee that they are the 17th century. If I take wootz Shamshir 19th century, and write on it, "Shah Abbas", it becomes Shamshir 17th century? We do not know when and who wrote the inscription on the Shamshir from the book "Arms and Armour from Iran," Mr. Khorasani. But we know that the brand "Assadula" has generated a lot of fakes. Is not it?

Those Persian saber, which I say (and that shows in the pictures) - 100% 17 th century.
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Old 24th February 2016, 10:54 PM   #54
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Just spent some time going through a long text of one of Manouchers articles on the Assadollah blades and markings, and he explains that he thinks the Assadollah as well as Kalb Ali are titles used by the seyyeds to describe association to descendants of the Prophet Mohammed, and or devotion to Ali and mastery of the craft.
He cites references to this in his book (2006, pp.148-167), which I do not have, but wanted to add these notes.

It seems that the word 'shamshir' of course is a general Persian word for sword which predates the actual appearance of these lighter blade sabres being discussed. This as always makes it difficult when looking into early sources for references.
It does seem the sabre shown by Mahratt in the post with its scabbard has an indeed heavy blade which seems more like Central Asia type sabres of the 17th c. Naturally these were likely contemporary to these light bladed forms now visually associated with the term 'shamshir'.

It certainly seems to me , the more I read through these things that the cartouches as well as dates and allusions including what may be honorific titles must be added in a commemorative or traditional sense on these blades. Thus many of these are not of course 'fakes but genuinely quality blades with these inscriptions which have a certain talismanic imbuement .
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Old 25th February 2016, 01:42 AM   #55
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Well, we seem to have different opinions. Since neither can be supported by a direct evidence, both are equally plausible.

I tend to go along with the simpler one: there was an exceptionally good swordmaker named Assadullah at the time of Shah Abbas who had a son named Kalbali, also a famous master.
Later Persian swordmakers signed their works with these two names either at the request of a vane customer, as the talismanic mark of exceptional quality or just for pecuniary reasons.


Other people may think differently, but there is no way we can convince each other.

We should just keep our own opinions and stop the senseless argument until new evidences becomes available.
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Old 25th February 2016, 03:10 AM   #56
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Guys, I do not understand why we are arguing. Make easier. Someone can show the Persian sword of the 17th century, which has a 100% provenance (a gift of the king, a diplomatic gift, which has a 17th century historical documents confirmation) with cartouche "Assadula"?
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Old 25th February 2016, 04:05 AM   #57
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Actually I don't believe we are in an argument here, but in a discussion expressing opinions and presenting any evidence we can to examine all aspects possible.
In a similar case mentioned before, that of Andrea Ferara with the fabled Scottish swords. There seems a good degree of evidence which establishes him and his brother Donato in Belluno in the mid 16th century, but as yet this is not compellingly proven.
What seems most interesting is that his name seems almost tailor made to the Scottish circumstance, as 'Andrew' was synonymous in parlance with good/true, not to mention that St. Andrew was the patron Saint of Scotland, and aligned with 'ferara (Lat. = iron). Is there evidence that this Andrea Ferara actually went to Scotland to teach the Scots the forging of swords ? Not as far as I have known, but it can not ever really be eliminated entirely.

So it must be with the Assad Allah case, and it seems there are several other instances which support an actual person in manuscripts, but all refer to him as Assad, not Assadollah and only one includes the name Esfahani (according to the M. Khorasani article). Could this name have become a tailored eponym used in a talismanic or invocative placement on blades over time in similar manner, I should think so .

In my view, it is not a matter of who is right or wrong, but I think all aspects and observations should be included in discussion. We all hold our own opinions, but for me, I am inclined to go toward whatever evidence is most compelling, and admittedly often times it is not my own. It is about learning, and that is the positive side to 'discussions'.......not debates, which are inherently usually counterproductive.
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Old 25th February 2016, 05:29 AM   #58
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Jim, of course, you - right. What I'm talking about - this is only version. But note that in my version, there are two questions to which none of the supporters version "Assadula - a real person," no answer.
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Old 25th February 2016, 09:29 AM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mahratt
Jim, of course, you - right. What I'm talking about - this is only version. But note that in my version, there are two questions to which none of the supporters version "Assadula - a real person," no answer.


To me it seems that you are not interested in the debate but are interested only in having your view accepted as the ultimate truth, and of course having the last word.

Why?

Well, first you asked about a documented mentionig of Assadullah as a real person but completely ignored the answers (the answer regarding the existence of such a mentioning related to the split helmet story, and my answers relating to the relevance of such a question).

Second, while we all agree that without irrefutable evidence, all our discussions are pure speculations, you akeep trying to press for your hypothesis as being the ultimate one.

Well, be it your way! You are right, absolutely right! And when I am saying that, I am referring also to your answer to my present comment, as I am not going to sink further into this "debate."
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Old 25th February 2016, 10:16 AM   #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mariusgmioc
To me it seems that you are not interested in the debate but are interested only in having your view accepted as the ultimate truth, and of course having the last word.

Why?

Well, first you asked about a documented mentionig of Assadullah as a real person but completely ignored the answers (the answer regarding the existence of such a mentioning related to the split helmet story, and my answers relating to the relevance of such a question).


I prefer to stick to the facts. Do you think that "the legend of the helmet, which cut the sword" in the retelling of 1954 - this is a serious argument? Did you read A.K.S. Lambton Islamic society in Persia? I will be very grateful, if you say, on a which manuscript makes reference Lambton.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mariusgmioc
Second, while we all agree that without irrefutable evidence, all our discussions are pure speculations, you akeep trying to press for your hypothesis as being the ultimate one.


Now about the irrefutable evidence and their absence. Can you give examples of Persian swords of the 17th century (which have 100% provenance, vindicated by historical documents) which has a cartouche "Assadula"? I can not remember such Persian swords. If you know of such a Persian sword, please tell me about it. I will be grateful.
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