~ 19th Century British Officer’s Mameluke Sword ~
The sword is marked on the ricasso with the manufacturer’s name of 'J.B. Johnstone, Sackville St., London & Dublin'.
There are three British coats of arms embossed on the blade. Two of them are on the left side and another one on the right side of the blade.
The brass guard is decorated on one side with the British coat of arms and on the other with a laurel wreath.
The sword comes in its original brass scabbard with both suspension rings and its gold and red suspension belt.
~ Dimensions ~
The blade length is 33 inches (83.8 cm) and the overall length of the sword is 36.8 inches (93.3 cm).
It weighs 1.17 kg.
~ Condition ~
The blade is in very good condition. Unfortunately the grips are missing - this is why it is so cheap!
There are some nicks on the edge of the blade and there is some minor darkening, as expected.
Its brass guard has the expected signs of wear but is undamaged.
The scabbard is undamaged but the gilt is partially worn.
~ Postage ~
UK postage is £18 or it can be collected from our shop in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.
~ History ~
A Mameluke sword is a cross-hilted, curved, scimitar-like sword historically derived from sabres used by Mamluk warriors of Mamluk Egypt from whom the sword derives its name. It is related to the shamshir, which had its origins in Persia from where the style migrated to India, Egypt and North Africa and the Turkish kilij. It was adopted in the 19th century by several Western militaries, including the French Army, British Army and the United States Marine Corps. Although some genuine Ottoman sabres were used by Westerners, most "mameluke sabres" were manufactured in Europe or America; their hilts were very similar in form to the Ottoman prototype, but their blades tended to be longer, narrower and less curved than those of the true kilij, while being wider and also less curved than the Persian shamshir. In short, the hilt retained its original shape and the blade tended to resemble the blade-form typical of contemporary Western military sabres. The Mameluke sword remains the ceremonial side arm for some units to this day.
Mameluke swords were carried as dress or levée swords by officers of most light cavalry and hussar, and some heavy cavalry regiments in the British Army at various points during the 19th century, starting in the period after Waterloo. The current regulation sword for generals, the 1831 Pattern, is a Mameluke-style sword, as were various Army Band swords.