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FASCINATING 17TH CENTURY TALWAR SHORT SWORD WITH ORIGINAL PATINA AND INTACT BLADE AND HANDLE

Central Asia

17th Century A.D.

This is a highly unusual antique weapon that we have not been able to locate another like it.  It is an genuine and original Talwar sword from the 17th century with an intriguing short blade compared to a typical longer and slightly curved blade known to this weapon.  This is NOT a cheap tourist piece that was cut down in modern times nor is similar to more prevalent, contemporary pieces.  It is a crude and older version of this famous type sword that was made with an original short blade.  The patina is original and the sword was only lightly cleaned in our lab and sealed to prevent any deterioration to the metal.  The blade lacks refined finishing that is seen in later period examples and the handle too, lacks evidence of the more modern manufactured techniques of later period pieces.  One has to ask "Could this have been a weapon intended for a child or woman soldier?".  It has a story to tell whatever that story may be.  It certainly is not similar to a normal Talwar sword in blade length.  Original patina on the tip and lack of any modern grinding marks indicate this is not a modern modification.  An interesting and affordable antique weapon that is complete and original.  NO REPAIR OR RESTORATION.

The talwar (tulwar) or the curved sword is a weapon that has been in use in India for almost 4000 years.  The earliest mention of this weapon is in the Mahabharata where it was used as a weapon of war.  It was also used in combat by kings as well as soldiers and was a weapon of choice by the cavalry.  The Indian sword in contrast to European swords was lighter and had a curved shape like a crescent.  The broad sword of the Europeans was heavier and not so maneuverable.  In contrast the Indian sword was greatly maneuverable and lighter and thus had a more lethal effect.

The advent of the Muslim conquest saw them adapt the sword for their use as well, but their cavalry relied more on the bow and arrow rather than the sword so the sword became a weapon of close combat by infantry.  The British who came to India were suitably impressed by the Tulwar.  They adapted it for their cavalry as the sabre.  Thus the blade of the British Pattern 1796 light cavalry saber is thought to be adapted from the Indian tulwar.  British horsemen moved forward with these curved swords and used them with telling effect.  The charge of the light brigade of the British army in the Crimea war was with sabres.  It has been immortalized with the words of Tennyson’s poem ‘it was not to reason why, but to do and die’

Most rulers of the sub continent either Hindu or Muslim patronized the tulwar.  It was a weapon used by both the infantry and the cavalry.  It was also much in demand by kings and generals for combat and duels but with the emergence of firearms such as the musket, the tulwar slowly went out of fashion.  The tulwar will always occupy an important place as a weapon of war and an important historical milestone in blade weapon evolution and development.

UNUSUAL VERSION IN SHORTENED FORM (FOR CHILD OR FEMALE SOLDIER?) - INTACT AND IN PERFECT ORIGINAL CONDITION

17.5" in length

SOLD     NE011     Actual Item - One Only

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