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Old 10th April 2006, 04:22 AM   #1
ariel
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Default Another Yataghan

This one was sold by a Forum member and I can only admire his honesty in describing this Yataghan.
http://cgi.ebay.com/INTERESTING-GREE...QQcmdZViewItem
Questions:
1.Why would somebody manufacture a Yataghan in 1907, other than for some ceremonial purposes?
2. In general, inscriptions on blades are of religious character, a signature/ownership or an inspirational motto. This one is sugary, sentimental and wimpy. I quote from the description:
"Hand inscribed in the blade, except for a couple of words which were etched, is the phrase in Greek "Even if the waves of the sea don't want to, I will not be afraid to love you, My little bird" and on the opposite side of the blade "You were born in this world to wound hearts, you know the cure but you keep it secret".
It is totally incongruous on a weapon. What is the reason behind this kitsch? Perhaps, our Greek Forumites can explain .
3. We have discussed a Yataghan with similar features some time ago
http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showth...light=yataghan
and could not agree on it's origin.
Perhaps, this one, with unequivocal evidence of origin, can teach us something interesting about Greek Yataghans.
A silver lining, of sorts.....
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Old 10th April 2006, 07:14 AM   #2
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i have seen a recently made 12" greek bichaq with similar inscription, was made for cutting the cake at a wedding.....silver cased scabbard et al. could this have been made as, to be fanciful, maybe the last production of an aging smith for his grand-daughter's wedding?
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Old 10th April 2006, 08:18 AM   #3
Yannis
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First, it is not a cake knife. It is a serious weapon.

I have seen this yataghan and I was also thinking the late date. In a lot of villages around Greece it was a tradition to wear knifes in the belt till 50s or in some remote areas even later. I have my grandfather’s last bitchaq and as I told it was the smaller one of the pieces he used to wear. So as we go back in time knifes were bigger and more fancy.

Also in 1907 Greece was half of today’s size. The north part and lot of islands were under Ottoman rule. So there were a lot of rebels (or freedom fighters from our point of view). These rebels did used swords as a backup weapon. Their rifles had usually one shot. Actually we have proofs that even Greek partisans in WWII used swords in battle!

I believe that the piece is fully authentic and it was belonging to a Greek sailor, maybe involved with rebels. The man was in desperate love so he asked someone to write the two poems on the blade and he added the date. The sword was possibly already old fashion.

The poems are very interesting. They use old types of grammar and they have spelling mistakes, showing low education. But as meanings they carry a tragedy that now days sound like soap opera.
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Old 10th April 2006, 02:13 PM   #4
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Did not mean to sound condescending.
Still , rather mawkish ...
Yannis, do you think that the brass-cast handles and cross or flower-in-the-circle decoration motive are traditional Greek?
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Old 10th April 2006, 02:15 PM   #5
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ooo-ps. Pushed the button twice.
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Old 10th April 2006, 02:46 PM   #6
Yannis
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Ariel
From 16th to 19th century there are only few styles of decoration that we can say they are defiently Greek. You see, a lot of invaders and a lot of cultures passed from this country. If it was not the description I could put this yataghan somewhere in Balkans. So generally.

Round ears is Greek sign. Brass hilt and scabbard was used more by Bulgarians. Flowers used everywhere. I am still learning Greek and Ottoman weapons so it is very possible I miss something.

It is only one reason I didnt bid on this yataghan. Greek or not it is ugly!
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