View Single Post
Old 2nd September 2021, 11:13 PM   #8
Jim McDougall
Arms Historian
Jim McDougall's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Route 66
Posts: 8,586

My initial thought in seeing this example, I thought perhaps this was a Sudanese kaskara blade mounted in a tulwar hilt. However, while the crudely drawn central triple fullers resemble those on the blades commonly seen on these, the blade fans out toward the hilt, while kaskara blades remain uniform.

A 'straight' blade 'tulwar' (Indo-Persian hilt) is known in Hindu as 'sukhela', and to the south in Deccan as 'dhup' (Marathi). ("The Indian Sword", P.Rawson, 1969, p.30,p.90).Trying to categorize these, just as with most ethnographic weapons, by term, is usually pure folly.

The straight blade on these swords seems to have been regarded in many cases as for representations of authority, court officials, and often soldiers or warriors of high esteem....apparently the variation had some significance.

It would seem this blade is a copied version of possibly the Sudanese kaskara blades, as far as fullering that is. Interestingly, I have seen Indian swords with 'kaskara or Sudanese' blades, or actually those of the form which were exported heavily into Sudan from Europe. In some cases these were with 'tulwar' hilts, some 'pata' etc.
That would suggest there was enough diffusion and interaction with trade between these spheres to bring about these kinds of circumstances.

Thus, a dhup/sukhela sword with probably Indian made approximation of either a Sudanese blade or its European counterpart. The 'firangi' term is used only collectively to describe any sword with a 'foreign' blade, regardless of overall sword form.
Jim McDougall is offline   Reply With Quote