sword (weapons: edged); sword sheath (sheath (weapons: accessories))

Elaborate north Indian sword, shamshir. The curved single edge blade is probably from Iran, and has a dark coloured Sham pattern of watering, and retains much of its original polished finish. The matching iron pommel, crosspiece and twin hanging bands fixed to the scabbard are all carved in low relief and decorated with gold koftgari, and applied with numerous leaf-shaped cabochon turquoises. The two-piece silver grips are embossed with stylised flowering foliage and applied with coloured pastes in imitation of rubies and diamonds. The bottom of the grip has been bound with silver bullion thread to retain a wrist strap (now missing). The wooden scabbard is covered with embroidered plum velvet, and was originally fitted with a matching chape (bottom mount) which is now missing. The sword's maker has tried to make the sword appear opulent without the necessary expenditure on materials or labour required to make it truly so.


Collection Information

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