Stone hilted pesh-kabz
This item has been sold.
Overall length

Sheathed 48.6 cm

Dagger 46.7 cm

Blade length

33.3 cm

Blade thickness

T-spine

Base 11 mm

Middle 7.5 mm

Reinforced tip 10 mm

Edge side

Base 2 mm

Middle 2 mm

Blade width

Base 46 mm

Middle 21 mm

Reinforced tip 13 mm

Weight without scabbard

498 grams

Point of balance

8 mm into hilt

Materials

Iron, steel, stone, wood, velvet, silver, brass.

Origin

Wider Punjab area

Dating

19th century

Provenance

European antique art market

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Description

A large dagger with a blade with a T-shaped cross-section and a strongly reinforced tip, a design optimized for thrusting through protection. I left the blade in original "as found" condition, being in a bright mirror polish with some minor age-related blemishes. It shows signs of a laminated construction and overall tight forging.

The hilt consists of a steel bolster and steel full tang construction on which two stone plates are riveted. The stone is most likely jasper.

The scabbard is made of two halves of wood, covered with worn silk velvet with a decorative band of metallic thread, Indian style. The scabbard mouthpiece is made of iron, with 18 facets, each decorated with a stylized creeper design in silver overlay. It has a separate rim on top, similarly decorated. The chape is made of brass and is a later, probably working life replacement.

 

Condition

The dagger itself in near excellent condition, with intact contours and edges, the point still feels as sharp as a needle. One period repair to the stone handle, the piece that was chipped off was glued back on, very well done. (See photos.)

The scabbard is structurally sound, but the silk velvet covering is in worn condition. Wear and tear on the silver mouthpiece, and a later chape of lesser workmanship.

 

Attribution

This style of the dagger was popular from old Persia to northern India. The style and workmanship on this one suggest it was probably made in Afghanistan or around the Punjab area, in what is now the borderlands between India and Pakistan.

 

Afghan foot soldiers

Two Afghan tribesmen in 1841 by British officer James Rattray.
The one on the left wears a large dagger.
British Library collection.

Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz
Large stone hilted pesh kabz

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