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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Thu 25 Sep, 2008 4:33 pm    Post subject: Arma Bohemia Ear Dagger         Reply with quote

Hey Everybody-

I recently sold a bunch of items unrelated to the hobby of arms and armour to gather up some cash that allowed me to purchase some photographic equipment. I had a bit of money left, and with the sale of a couple smaller knives/daggers, I was able to purchase myself a new toy.

My new toy is an ear dagger made by Arma Bohemia of the Czech Republic. The dagger is modeled after examples found in the 15th century.

The dagger is quite big, measuring about 17" tip to "ears". The stiff blade is a strong diamond cross-section and is 10.25" long and .75" wide at its base. There is a small ricasso with two "fullered" (dished-out) areas. The grip and "ears" are inset with bone. Brass fittings complete the hilt components.

The scabbard is a hardwood core covered in red leather and has a polished metal chape. When in the scabbard, the dagger "clicks" in and is secure and cannot fall out even when turned upside down. It balances very nicely from its single ring attachment point.

The shape of the hilt makes for a very comfortable and secure grip. The ears "lock" the dagger into place in both a blade-forward and an "icepick" grip. This type of hilt is attractive (to me), unusual, and effective.

Ordering form Arma Bohemia was extremely easy. I chose the item from their "in stock" page and paid using PayPal. Paying this way required me adding the PayPal fees (about 3.3%) but was far more convenient, and in this case less expensive, than doing a wire transfer. It took two days to get the piece in the mail and about a week to travel from the Czech Republic to San Francisco.


Check it out:








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Sam Haverkamp
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PostPosted: Thu 25 Sep, 2008 4:40 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Nathan,
I love ear daggers. That is a beautiful example for sure. I think whatever you sold was a good trade for such a fine piece.
So did you use your new Photo equip to take those pics? They Look great!
Congrats!
Sam
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D. Austin
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
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PostPosted: Thu 25 Sep, 2008 4:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Very cool. Nice purchase Nathan. I was one of the few who voted ear daggers as being my favourite form of medieval dagger. This is definitely a nice addition to your collection.
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J. D. Carter




Location: Az.
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PostPosted: Thu 25 Sep, 2008 5:36 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

That is my 1st detailed look at one of those. Really like the bone.

I have to admit that when I saw the title I more than half expected to be reading about something vaguely icepick like preferred by assassins for the ease in which they were inserted into the cranium via the...well you get the picture.

It's not just a good looking dagger. The sheath is eye catching as well.

Were those fairly rare ? Admittedly my knowledge of daggers is slim but I'm familiar with several types from various cultures. Of that type all I know is that , oh what they heck. Google is my friend. Time to learn more.
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Joe Fults




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PostPosted: Thu 25 Sep, 2008 6:30 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I think its very cool that it found a home where it did.

They do so many neat daggers.

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Jason Elrod




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PostPosted: Thu 25 Sep, 2008 7:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I would have never guessed that that dagger was 17" long. I think my favorite thing about the dagger is the scabbard. I love how the dagger actually locks into place. I also didn't expect the scabbard to be covered with leather. For some reason, just my impression from Arma Bohemia's pics, I assumed that it was simply painted red wood.

This is a very unique and nice addition to a collection. I've been looking at the Arma Bohemia Ear Dagger for a while. It's nice to see more pics and to hear someone's impressions of it.
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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Thu 25 Sep, 2008 7:22 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

That is so cool. Happy I'm glad you got it. I'd seen that on their in-stock page for a while and was kind of tempted.

Nice stuff.

Happy

ChadA

http://chadarnow.com/
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D. Austin
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PostPosted: Thu 25 Sep, 2008 7:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

J. D. Carter wrote:
Were those fairly rare ? Admittedly my knowledge of daggers is slim but I'm familiar with several types from various cultures. Of that type all I know is that , oh what they heck. Google is my friend. Time to learn more.


Hi there. As far as I know they were fairly uncommon. I have been collecting images of originals to help make my own reproduction (unfortunately no museums I know of in Australia have them) and have so far found pictures of 12 examples. Most of these are from top level museums and thus I would conclude that they are now extremely rare.

They certainly appear less often in art and surviving examples than the baselard, quillon, rondel or bollock daggers. The fact that they are complex in construction suggests that they would have been status symbols for the rich and fashionable. They also often featured gilding, inlay and chasing/repousse on the hilts which adds to this assertion. If we can assume that they were indeed more valuable than the average dagger, we can probably surmise that a higher percentage survived (as heirlooms or artifacts) than that of the average dagger, leading to the possibility that they were even rarer than one would imagine.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that yes, they were rare, although Stone's Glossary asserts that "They were very popular, especially in Italy, in the first half of the 15th century". I'd definitely advise learning more, as should I. I love these things.
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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Thu 25 Sep, 2008 7:28 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have a several dozens of images of ear daggers that I should scan and put online at some point once I can find the time to do so.
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J. D. Carter




Location: Az.
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PostPosted: Thu 25 Sep, 2008 7:38 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This one is art .

http://www.futuremuseum.co.uk/images/cache/Img505S1000.jpg
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D. Austin
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
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PostPosted: Thu 25 Sep, 2008 8:04 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Nathan Robinson wrote:
I have a several dozens of images of ear daggers that I should scan and put online at some point once I can find the time to do so.


Please, oh, please find the time. Big Grin

I'd love to see them.
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Jean Thibodeau




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PostPosted: Thu 25 Sep, 2008 9:02 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Very nice design and a well executed example of the design: Congratulations on a good purchase.

Since you mention how well the ears lock the dagger in the hand it might be interesting to see it held in both the forward and ice pic grip and see what options there are for finger or thumb positions ? Can or should the thumb be on top of the but end between the ears when in the ice pic grip ?

I should add one of these to my collection eventually ( Not necessarily the same one but an eared dagger of some kind ?
maybe Tinker will make one and have it available in stock at some point coinciding with my having the funs to buy it ? )

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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Christopher Gregg




Location: Louisville, KY
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PostPosted: Fri 26 Sep, 2008 8:15 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I was wondering where that little beauty went! I've been contemplating purchasing their ear dagger for a few weeks, but the hurricane coming through left me with too much damage and clean up to risk cutting loose the funds. Congrats on your new acquisition, Nathan! It's a real nice knife! Happy
Christopher Gregg

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Daniel Sullivan




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PostPosted: Fri 26 Sep, 2008 8:26 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Nathan,

Beautiful piece! Visited the site and found the selection of daggers to be very interesting, i.e. rondels. Think your choice to be the most attractive. When it comes to weapons of this apparent quality, I confess that my awe and interest sometimes becomes lust....

Regards,
Dan
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Justin King
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PostPosted: Fri 26 Sep, 2008 5:51 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Nice piece! Ear daggers are a bit under-represented in the current market I think. They are striking to say the least, many originals are very complex in both contruction and decoration. The simlicity of this one is elegant.
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