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John A Noto




Location: St Louis, MO
Joined: 05 Sep 2009

Posts: 3

PostPosted: Sat 05 Sep, 2009 9:36 am    Post subject: Need Help Identifying a Sword         Reply with quote

I have a sword that my grandfather owned. It's very interesting and I would love to know it origin. Both the sword and scabbard bear matching numbers. The sword has two markings, one on each side of the blade, close to the gaurd. on side bears a crown with two initials JR just below the crown. The other side has what looks to be a bust of armor. The numbers shown on the gaurd and the scabbard are 107 R 4 61. Any help will be greatly appreciated.


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Sword picture [ Download ]
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Nathan M Wuorio




Location: Maine.
Joined: 17 Mar 2008
Reading list: 3 books

Posts: 151

PostPosted: Sat 05 Sep, 2009 11:38 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hmm, it looks British to me, the crown above the initials is common on their swords. Can you provide some larger photos of the entire blade and scabbard? Include some of the hilt and other markings. Also knowing the full length and some history of when your grandfather owned it and when he acquired it would be helpful. Jonathan Hopkins knows much more than I do about these things, so I hope he comments on it.

Best,
Nathan.

Nathan.
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John A Noto




Location: St Louis, MO
Joined: 05 Sep 2009

Posts: 3

PostPosted: Sat 05 Sep, 2009 1:28 pm    Post subject: More sword information and pictures         Reply with quote

Thanks for replying. The length of the blade 18-1/2" long And the overall is around 24-1/2". My great grandmother purchased it somewhere around 1935 at a garage sale and gave it to my grandfather (or at least, that's the story). I've attached a few more pictures.


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Partial Scabbard, full handle [ Download ]

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Full Picture with Scabbard [ Download ]

 Attachment: 201.05 KB
Sword out of scabbard [ Download ]
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John A Noto




Location: St Louis, MO
Joined: 05 Sep 2009

Posts: 3

PostPosted: Sat 05 Sep, 2009 1:31 pm    Post subject: One more photo of the serial numbers         Reply with quote

see attached.


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Picture of serial numbers [ Download ]
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Nathan M Wuorio




Location: Maine.
Joined: 17 Mar 2008
Reading list: 3 books

Posts: 151

PostPosted: Sat 05 Sep, 2009 2:48 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for the pictures. The first thing that came into my head when I saw the entire sword was how broad the blade was. The width of the blade and the style of the guard makes me think this was an infantry pioneer sword, probably from the mid to late 19th century. It doesn't look like a blade made for combat, as the thrusting capabilities wouldn't be very good. The cutting capabilities would be excellent due to the width and forward weight of the blade. It definitely resembles other pioneer swords and modern machete blades, so I'm pretty confident in my assessment, though I can still be wrong.

I hope this information helps.

Nathan.

Nathan.
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
Joined: 15 Mar 2004
Likes: 50 pages
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Spotlight topics: 5
Posts: 8,251

PostPosted: Sat 05 Sep, 2009 11:53 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Nathan M Wuorio wrote:
The width of the blade and the style of the guard makes me think this was an infantry pioneer sword, probably from the mid to late 19th century.
Nathan.


I tend to agree and maybe one could call " Infantry Pioneers " another name for what we would probably call today combat engineers or soldiers specializing in siege works/field fortifications or building roads/bridges.

Sidearm combined with light use in clearing brush but I would think that for serious work dedicated tools like axes or saws would be available.

Looks late 18th to mid 19th century European ?

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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Glen A Cleeton




Location: Nipmuc USA
Joined: 21 Aug 2003

Posts: 1,925

PostPosted: Sun 06 Sep, 2009 2:38 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Prussian, I believe. The second half of the 19th century and the term is best qualified as a faschinenmesser (sp). There was a good discussion of these back in July at Sword Forum International.

http://forums.swordforum.com/showthread.php?t=96472

Basically heavier machete in purpose, so yes, mostly intended to deal with brushwork and building chores of the infantry and artillery. The numbers on the scabbard can lead to a good bit more information but I would be out of my depth. George Wheeler and some others might be able to explain the markings pretty much off the top of their heads.

So, not British but they too made and fielded a good number of brass hilted hangers/short swords. Actually late in the game for them to be fielding and using such integral hilts but their land transport swords (for an instance) are quite like the French infantry gladius types.

Cheers

GC
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Ian Hutchison




Location: Louisiana / Nordrhein-Westholland
Joined: 27 Nov 2007

Posts: 567

PostPosted: Sun 06 Sep, 2009 10:03 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yes, I believe Mr.Cleeton has got it. I saw one just like it advertised as such at auction not so long ago.
'We are told that the pen is mightier than the sword, but I know which of these weapons I would choose.' - Adrian Carton de Wiart
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Felix Kunze




Location: Bonn, Germany
Joined: 28 Feb 2007

Posts: 49

PostPosted: Mon 07 Sep, 2009 12:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hello John,

I also think it is a Prussian "Faschinenmesser" from the end of the 18th or first ahlf of the 19 th century. These Prussian infantry and artillery sideswords often have the same style of grip and I found a very similar one (very broad) but with a more slender guard and sawtooth on the back (may be added later). It is dated 1810. It also has numbers on the guard and scabbard, which name the unit to whom the weapon was issued.
So the numbers on Your piece can mean: 107th Regiment 4th Kompanie, weapon No. 61.
The Crown with JR (can also be read IR) will probably be the manufacturer´s mark. I did not find the Initials JR or IR, but the crown is a very common sign on weapons from Solingen.
If you have access to a good library (University?), maybe You can try to find:
G. Maier, Preußische Blankwaffen, II.
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