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Old 9th November 2012, 07:42 AM   #1
longfellow
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Default Yataghan and markings - ID and comments, please

Good evening,

While cleaning house at the folks, I ran across a wooden wall decoration that has been hanging there, in a corner, for years - and had 3 swords in it. I always thought they were merely decoration until I took it down to clean. Much to my surprise, the swords look real but, for the life of me, I can't find an example of any of the three.

This is the yataghan(?) and the markings on it. It is 35" long, has copper decorations and a copper band up one side and down the other (sorry I forgot the photo of that). And a guard - not used to seeing those on one.

Any help or comments or identification would be appreciated!
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Old 9th November 2012, 01:00 PM   #2
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I agree, it looks "real", i.e. not just wall decoration. The blade shows some Ottoman insignia and coat of arms (and could be european trade blade, such as Zolingen. Any stamps at the base by forte?). The hilt is retrofitted Karabella-styled, also Ottoman type hilt. The later crossguard of that form is not unusual, although not common. It is impossible to determine without seeing it complete, can wee see the whole sword, and how about other two swords?:-)

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Old 9th November 2012, 03:04 PM   #3
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Hi Alex,

Thank you for the info. No, no other markings that I can see.

Here's a photo of the three. I should note that the change in color on the blades is probably because they were hanging near the fireplace (but not too near) in a wooden carving of a shield with a family crest and had been there since the 70's.

The middle one has a stamped (?) copper grip and pommel and a note on a small string tag saying '3rd crusade'. Length is 42" , the guard is a hair over 6", grip and pommel about 5 3/4" long.

The bottom sword may well be 'decorative'. About 39" in length, looks like a cast grip and guard that a magnetic sticks to, guard 6 1/4" across and grip about 7 1/4" long.

It looks like my dad used something of each of the first 3 decades he had been actively collecting - bottom acquired 1958, middle acquired 1975 and top acquired 1965
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Old 9th November 2012, 06:42 PM   #4
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Smile Yatagan

Dear Member,
The picture you have submitted is not of a yatagan but is of a heinz 57 variety,
First of all Yatagans we know of do not have cross guards and are not as broad
and straight ( with the exception of some sırbian produce ).The blade is a typical european manufactured ( most possibly Hungarian) commercial blade supplıed to the Turkish/Ottoman market.The hilt is a sword hilt common in 18/19 centuries.The cross guard does not belong to the hilt as you will see it was made for a different type cross guard(pls note the bedding for the tang on the hilt)and its a later reproduction of 16 century Ottoman type cross guard.
But it is an old sword probably around 200 years old.Enjoy it.
Regards
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Old 9th November 2012, 07:11 PM   #5
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Not to derail the thread but the middle sword is a kaskara - a Sudanese sword. Likely a 19th or early 20th century piece. Looks quite nice and might just deserve a thread of its own.
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Old 9th November 2012, 07:57 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YataganMan
Dear Member,
The picture you have submitted is not of a yatagan but is of a heinz 57 variety...
Not exactly. This is a variety of yataghan! As I mentioned, these variations with karabella-like crossquards and hits are rare. Here's one with shamshir cross: http://www.oriental-arms.com/item.php?id=2866
The blade was made in yat form and for yat. This form is also known on Polish yats and used by the Hungarian mountaneers of late 18th Century (Pandours).
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Old 9th November 2012, 08:31 PM   #7
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Smile yatagan ID

Dear Alex ,
Thank you for your valuable contribution in re above but the picture you supplied (oriental arms )does confirm the point I made where it just says Yatagan STYLE Turkish Sword and furher in 18oo's some european nations supplıed their military rifles with yatagan bayonets ,can we consider both of these Yatagans ?İf an edged weapon lacks the typical characsteristics of(recurve blades,eared handles small or big and hilts without guards ) it can not be classed as yatagans.Just resemblence of one part ie the blade does not qualify it being a yatagan.The original post named that sword Yatagan and I only wanted to correct the terminology and the concept.
Best regards
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Old 9th November 2012, 09:33 PM   #8
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Such yataghans are well represented in Elgood's book on Balkan weaponry: Greek naval yataghan.
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Old 10th November 2012, 03:07 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YataganMan
Dear Alex ,
Thank you for your valuable contribution in re above but the picture you supplied (oriental arms )does confirm the point I made where it just says Yatagan STYLE Turkish Sword and furher in 18oo's some european nations supplıed their military rifles with yatagan bayonets ,can we consider both of these Yatagans ?İf an edged weapon lacks the typical characsteristics of(recurve blades,eared handles small or big and hilts without guards ) it can not be classed as yatagans.Just resemblence of one part ie the blade does not qualify it being a yatagan.The original post named that sword Yatagan and I only wanted to correct the terminology and the concept.
Best regards

YataghanMan,
Thank you for your observations about this not being a 'true form' yataghan in the traditional sense of the original term. I shoulld like to point out, though, that a Rolls Royce is a car though it is a far cry its ancestor the Model A or its contemporary the Volt. However, that is beside the point. If you will notice in my OP, there is a question mark after the word 'Yataghan'. I did not name the sword a yataghan, I was, in essence, asking if it was. I do appreciate your input and, as I said, your observations.
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Old 10th November 2012, 03:14 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ALEX
Not exactly. This is a variety of yataghan! As I mentioned, these variations with karabella-like crossquards and hits are rare. Here's one with shamshir cross: http://www.oriental-arms.com/item.php?id=2866
The blade was made in yat form and for yat. This form is also known on Polish yats and used by the Hungarian mountaneers of late 18th Century (Pandours).

Hello Alex,

Thank you for the information and the sources that you have shared. I know just enough about edged weapons to be, well, I guess, dangerous - to myself, that is. I know a bit more than a little, but very far from enough. I hadn't even begun to begin to think about something other than Turkish. I only wish I had the time to study so many more things than I'm already trying to. Again, thank you.
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Old 10th November 2012, 03:20 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iain
Not to derail the thread but the middle sword is a kaskara - a Sudanese sword. Likely a 19th or early 20th century piece. Looks quite nice and might just deserve a thread of its own.

Hello Iain,

There is a saying: Ask and ye shall receive.

I will be glad to start a thread for the Kaskara. I handled one from my dad's collection some time back and should have recognized it. However, this one, with the work on the hilt and pommel sort of put me on a wrong trail. The other one seemed much more crude while the work on this one is, ah, nice. A thread will give me a chance to show good photos of it, too. Thank you for the nudge.
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Old 10th November 2012, 03:25 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Such yataghans are well represented in Elgood's book on Balkan weaponry: Greek naval yataghan.

Hello ariel,

Thank you for the reference. As I've always found, you are a great contributor. I will see if I can find a copy of Elgood's book, especially since I've always liked the Balkan edged weapons (I still have the Black Sea yataghan - it ain't gonna see the light of day in my lifetime). Thank you, again, for taking the time to post.
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Old 10th November 2012, 08:39 AM   #13
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Hi longfellow!

Cool swords, I especially like the yataghan! If you could post some close-ups of the hilt - particularly from the pommel-end - I might be able to tell you the material it was carved from. From the photo's already posted above, I think it could be rhino horn.

Thanks for sharing them!


Have a great weekend, - Thor
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Old 10th November 2012, 09:22 AM   #14
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[QUOTE=T. Koch]Hi longfellow!

Cool swords, I especially like the yataghan! If you could post some close-ups of the hilt - particularly from the pommel-end - I might be able to tell you the material it was carved from. From the photo's already posted above, I think it could be rhino horn.


Hi Thor,

Here's a couple of shots. I hope they are clear enough. though I have doubts about the smaller one. I'll try again if it isn't good enough.

longfellow
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Old 10th November 2012, 06:49 PM   #15
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Here's some photos from previous threads that may be of interest.
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Old 10th November 2012, 07:06 PM   #16
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Hiello Nornan,

Yes, very much of interest. Thank you for taking the time and trouble to post those photos! Would you give a hint - that someone old, like me, could understand - as to where the one on the left was referenced?
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Old 10th November 2012, 07:30 PM   #17
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Hi Longfellow,
If you type Karabela into the Forum search function you'll be able to find the threads that these images come from, there are not too many to look through. I apologise, I should have taken note of the threads that these images came from and added links , good hunting.
Regards,
Norman.


P.S. One thread is titled, HELP WITH A LARGE YATAGHAN, and the other is titled
Weapons of the Pandours, and Who Were They?

Last edited by Norman McCormick; 10th November 2012 at 07:45 PM.
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Old 10th November 2012, 07:51 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Norman McCormick
Hi Longfellow,
If you type Karabela into the Forum search function you'll be able to find the threads that these images come from, there are not too many to look through. I apologise, I should have taken note of the threads that these images came from and added links , good hunting.
Regards,
Norman.


P.S. One thread is titled, HELP WITH A LARGE YATAGHAN, and the other is titled
Weapons of the Pandours, and Who Were They?

Norman, a gentleman and scholar. Thank you.
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Old 10th November 2012, 08:35 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Norman McCormick
Hi Longfellow,
......
P.S. ..... Weapons of the Pandours, and Who Were They?

Norman. You were in on that thread as well. Thus, I would suspect that you have some knowledge on the subject What do you think of the suggestion that the sword might be the Ottoman counterpart of the Pandour, the bashi-bazouks - only the guard has been changed to protect the ..... , would be too far out in left field? Especially considering the markings on the blade.

I guess now I get to go look for some bashi-bazouks weapons. Oh well, what't that they say? No rest for the wick, ah, weary.

Thank you again.
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Old 12th November 2012, 08:47 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by longfellow
Norman. You were in on that thread as well. Thus, I would suspect that you have some knowledge on the subject What do you think of the suggestion that the sword might be the Ottoman counterpart of the Pandour, the bashi-bazouks - only the guard has been changed to protect the ..... , would be too far out in left field? Especially considering the markings on the blade.

I guess now I get to go look for some bashi-bazouks weapons. Oh well, what't that they say? No rest for the wick, ah, weary.

Thank you again.
Hi Longfellow,
Much as I'm flattered by your confidence in my knowledge I'm afraid I am unable to give you any more info. Zifir or the ever knowledgeable Jim McDougall amongst others would be the men to answer your questions, hopefully they will come to my rescue. On the other hand your sword is very interesting and I'm glad you posted it here.
My Regards,
Norman.
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Old 22nd November 2012, 05:52 PM   #21
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Well, instead of explanations I have two questions Is there a inscription in latin at the top of the first picture because I am not sure. And secondly, the figure in the second picture, is it a tete de turc? And was there any other examples? I could only find a reference to a french cavalry officer saber from the 1st empire having a tete de turc chiselled on the blade in a catalogue but with no pictures.
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Old 22nd November 2012, 06:44 PM   #22
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Hi Zifir,
Russian cavalry sabre c1800 with 'Turks head' engraving, Wallis and Wallis. French c1750 smallsword with same, Harvey Withers. As far as I'm aware this style of blade decor not uncommon in 18thC European blades.
Regards,
Norman.
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Old 23rd November 2012, 04:12 PM   #23
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Hi,
Austro-Hungarian officers sword c1785, from www.sailorinsaddle.com
Regards,
Norman.
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Old 23rd November 2012, 04:16 PM   #24
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Hi,
European hunting hanger latter half 18thC.
Regards,
Norman.
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Old 23rd November 2012, 09:12 PM   #25
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Hi Longfellow,

I'm sorry for not getting back to you on the hilt material any time sooner - I must have missed your update somehow.

The scale is a bit tricky to ID, with those diagonal scratches in the surface obscuring the grain, but two features prompt me to believe that we're looking at rhinoceros horn: The horizontal thread-like grain of the handle, where the individual fibers are visible in areas where the surface scratches aren't so prominent, is typical for rhino. Likewise, if you look at the hole drilled near the pommel, the edge is damaged in a way that looks more "thready" than "flakey". Old rhino horn when dry and damaged becomes this way, rather than break of in chips and flakes like many bovine horn, for instance.

But, it is really hard to tell from photos!


Best wishes, - Thor
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Old 23rd November 2012, 10:21 PM   #26
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Norman,
Thanks a lot for these interesting examples. These are new for me.
Regards,
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Old 24th November 2012, 12:01 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zifir
Norman,
Thanks a lot for these interesting examples. These are new for me.
Regards,
Hi Zifir,
You're welcome. Here is something else that may be of interest, it is titled, From Freyfechter, Sebastian Heussler's Fencing Treatise, New Kunstlich Fechtbuch of 1615. An interesting article containing this image and others with text can be found here www.hroarr.com/the-dussack/
My Regards,
Norman.

P.S. Note the images of the 'heads' compared to the images on swords.
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Old 8th October 2021, 08:41 AM   #28
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I was doing research for a yataghan that proved to be identical with the one in this thread, so i am showing it! The handle, crossguard, and type of blade are identical. There are different engravings on the blade, of the same style though.
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Old 8th October 2021, 08:43 AM   #29
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Default what is the meaning?

I wondering what this inscription is about! Is it an abreviation?
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Old 9th October 2021, 10:08 AM   #30
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just like Jim wrote on the Pandours ¬“the exact nature of the probably widely assorted weapons used by them cannot of course be determined with any certainty. As many of the men in these units were recruited from Balkan regions and ethnic groups in contingent areas, all supplying thier own weapons, it would be impossible to do anything but speculate¬”

the same applies on the Balkans for the Bash Bazouks as both of them were recruted from locals, who either wanted to escape poverty, have a decent bed, food and clothing or just were ordered as a buffer at the borders to function as a protection force. Hence still the name "Krajina" derived from kraj = end in the former Yugoslavia, meaning military frontier were Vlachs, Serbs, Montenegrins, Croats and Bosnians lived.
And many became Pandours at the Habsburgian side , where on the Ottoman side the same became Bash Bazouks with some Albanians an Greek as well included. Similar like at the Battle of Kosovo, a big day in Serbian history, many Serbs were fighting in service of the Sultan....
That line continues to the "Bosniaken"i.e. the Habsburg Infantery Regiments I -IV which existested from 1882 -1918 (NCOs and other ranks were Muslims, 39.12% were Orthodox and 25.04% were Roman Catholic. The remainder were a mix of Greek Catholics, Jews and Protestants.[1] Regardless of religious faith all other ranks wore the fez. ).

So nothing new on the Balkans, same as the Romans used men from the Illyrian regions to fight the Gaul wars.

It goes without saying that they all brought and used their own local weapons and also used local black smiths to manufacture weapons.
Hence quite some influence from all sides.Like in some earlier post where I showed a bichaq who has Bosnian and Surme characteristics. or one with a painting of a Habsburgian Dalmatian regiment who went into battle with yataghans.

So difficult to say sometimes but I would like to hear more from yataghanman and have him elaborate more on his statement as I do want to learn more.

Elgood, no disrespect intended, is for me not leading on Yataghans as i am reading now Durdica Petrovic's book "Balkan waepons (VII-XIX) , one of 4 she wrote, which Elgood used to write for his piece on yataghans.

By he way Baron Franz von der Trenck was although Prussian an Austrian officer in charge of the pandours, just like many Austrians did on the "Bosniaken" and is a cousin of Friedrich Freiherr von der Trenck,, also world famous because of his adventures.

Coming back to the pandours or grenzer versus bash bazouks: both sides were know for their fierce heroic fighting but also some atrocities...

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