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Old 6th April 2009, 11:01 PM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 187
Default Shasqua

Hi all, Jim and Gav have been encouraging me to post more items from my collection, although I have nothing specially great. Certainly nothing to match recent postings by other members!
I haven't seen any shasqua's posted in the last months, so here is mine and I hope that Jim will post a learned discourse on Russian weapons.
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Old 7th April 2009, 03:12 PM   #2
Jim McDougall
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Route 66
Posts: 6,698

Hi Brian,
Thank you for continuing to post your swords, and for the kind words. I appreciate your confidence
This sabre is a WWII period Cossack shaska (the USSR symbol at back of pommel cap) . These I always thought were intriguing as they typically had the bayonet for the Moison-Nagant rifle scabbard mounted.
The stamps and markings are issue and proof markings, which I'm sure are catalogued somewhere, but not as far as I know in the west. The Russian resources may have some detail, but of course in Cyrillic. The only person I know around here who is well versed in the Russian language is Ariel, and he is also knowledgeable on shashkas, so I hope he might respond here.

The Russians, after the conquest of Caucasian regions during the Murid Wars at mid 19th century, began adopting some of the weaponry of these outstanding warriors, in particular the shashka, the guardless sabre used fiercely by them. In time, many men from Caucasian regions were recruited into the Cossack units, and were permitted certain latitude in use of thier native sabres. As can be seen here, Russia adopted military versions of these sabres.

If memory serves, the best reference describing the development of these regulation patterns is "Russian Military Swords 1801-1917" by Eugene Mollo, Historical Research Unit, 1969. While out of print for some time, they have appeared recently on ebay, and did not command high price.

Very interesting example, and nice to see it complete with scabbard and bayonet as well, too many of these have become damaged and those components lost. I have always thought it interesting to see just how late cavalry with swords, and in the case of the Polish, even lances, were used into WWII.

All best regards,
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