Marwar talwar with dated hilt
Overall length

86.1 cm

Blade length

75 cm

(to center crossguard)

Blade thickness

Base 6 mm

Middle 5 mm

Start backedge 3 mm

Blade width

Base 35 mm

Middle 32 mm

Start backedge 33.5 mm

Weight

903 grams

Point of balance

14.5 cm from guard

Materials

Iron, steel, resin, silver

Scabbard: wood, velvet, metallic thread

Origin

Princely state of Marwar

Rajasthan, North India

Dating

Hilt dated 1857 A.D.

Provenance

From a German private collector

Price €2200, -

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Description

A 19th-century talwar with fairly typical blade for one of these, curved and with a sharp backedge at the tip. The steel shows an attractive pattern weld.

 

Pattern welded talwar blade

 

Blades of this style were often burnished bright, the pattern being invisible, or otherwise just have the edge burnished. In this case there are remnants of the original burnishing under the hilt's langets and also the marks of the burnisher. such marks are quite rare, often collectors polish and etch them away. This sword also comes with a later etch, revealing the pattern, but luckily the forte of the blade with burnisher's marks was left intact and I am very happy for it.

Burnisher marks

Burnisher's marks on base of talwar blade.

 

Hilt

The hilt is in the typical Marwari Rajput style, with a large disc pommel with radiating sun motif at the back, wide quillons with flattened ends, and also flat ends to the langets. This style is called karan shahi.

It is overlaid with silver koftgari work, decorated with slightly raised motifs of stylized vines over a background of punch dotted silver sheet.

At the base of the pommel is an inscription in typical Rajput style. It mentions:

Ram Namar Karigargh

samvat 1914

It can be translated as:

Made by Ram Namar in 1857 A.D.

 

1857 was the year of a major Indian uprising against the British East India Company, an event known as the Indian Mutiny.

 

Comparable examples

A nearly identical hilt is seen on a talwar from a private collection, illustrated in Elgood's Rajput Arms & Armour. It too is signed and dated. This time samvat 1931, corresponding to 1873 A.D.

 

Notes
1. Robert Elgood; Rajput Arms & Armour, Niyogi Books, New Delhi, 2017. Volume 1. Pages 472-473.

 

Scabbard

It comes in a later, probably 20th-century scabbard, made in the traditional way with velvet-covered wood and metallic thread.

 

Condition

Some losses to the silver, damage to hilt spike. The blade in very good shape, in later etch but with no pitting or major distortions.

Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt
Marwari talwar with 1857 dated hilt

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