Easton Antique Arms



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A Victorian Volunteer Engineers officer's sword, retailed by Hebbert. This example is in good condition with very detailed and deep etching to the blade. Everything is tight and the hilt is also in good shape, with all the shagreen and just one of the thin wires missing from part of the grip. No scabbard unfortunately and there is some very light pitting near the tip of the blade.

£375 + P&P NEW
An Edward VII period officer's sword. Normally I'd say that this was an artillery officer's sword, but it lacks any markings to the artillery and has a chequered pommel, which normally indicates cavalry in the Victorian period. The problem being that all cavalry officers switched to the heavy cavalry hilt in 1896, whereas this has the light cavalry 3-bar hilt, yet dates to the reign of Edward VII (1901-1910). So I presume it must have been a special order for a cavalry officer who wanted the 3-bar hilt. The retailer is Hawkes and the maker is Pillin (according to the proof slug), so it is very good quality. The condition is good, with a bright clean blade, clear etching, all the shagreen and grip wire and a tidy field service scabbard. The nickel plating on the hilt is now dull, but this could be buffed up to bright without much trouble.

£325 + P&P NEW
A lovely example of a Highland Light Infantry Field Officer's sword, by Henry Wilkinson, dating to 1900. This sword belonged to Lieut.-Colonel Roland Charles Greenwood of the HLI. Greenwood served in the later stages of the Second Anglo-Boer War and also in WW1 (mentioned in dispatches twice). The sword he is wearing in this photo below is the actual sword being offered for sale here (though here with the field service scabbard rather than the dress scabbard pictured) - photos copyright of Andrew Smith & Son Auctioneers, who sold his medals and associated items (this sale listed here is only for the sword):

Greenwood joined the HLI in 1900 and took part in the latter stages of the Second Boer War. In 1902 he was sent to Khartoum and seconded into the Egyptian Army and during this time was appointed Governor of Kordofan in the Sudan and awarded the Order of The Nile. The sword had been untouched for a long time when it came to me and had light rust on much of the hilt - this has been cleaned, but I am certain that more gentle work can be done here and the sword could warrant a full professional restoration of the hilt. The blade is wonderfully etched and in good condition, with standard patina for the age. The hilt is all secure (Highland hilts can unscrew, so you can take it apart and put it back together again easily - this was to allow swapping out the Field Officer's scroll hilt with a full basket hilt for parade purposes). The grip is in nice condition with all the shagreen and wire. The liner is present if somewhat aged - you can still buy these liners from Pooley or Crisp, so that could be safely stored and a new one put in there for display purposes - they tie in place and are easily removable as in the photos. The scabbard is in pretty good shape. A highly desirable and relatively rare sword, by the top maker of the day, which belonged to a very interesting and high-ranking officer.

£1,495 + P&P
A rare Napeolonic era British infantry officer's non-regulation sabre, featuring a faux-damascus blade and ivory grip. The 27 inch highly curved shamshir-style blade of this sword is in fantastic condition, showing the etched damascus pattern, emulating wootz swords of the Middle East. It is solid in the hilt and is sharp. The guard and backstrap are brass with traces of gilding remaining in the recesses. The guard is clearly inspired by the 1796 light cavalry sabre and the backstrap is similar to the 1803 pattern infantry officer's sabre. Therefore this sword probably dates to around 1803-1810. It could be British or German made, but almost certainly for a British officer, perhaps serving in India and perhaps Honourable East India Company. The ivory grip may be a period but slightly later addition, as I  have seen a slightly similar sword to this one with a shagreen grip.

Please note that because of the ivory grip, I cannot export this sword outside the UK.

£1,250 + P&P

A Norwegian naval cutlass 'Marine Huggert' M1850, clearly based on the British 1845/1859 pattern. The maker's mark is clearly visible, indicating it was made by the Kongsberg Våpenfabrikk (Kongsberg Arms factory) in Norway. The intials IL are also visible, which indicate the control officer Jens Landmark, who worked at Kongsberg Våpenfabrikk from 11 March 1853 to 1 November 1854*. There is some light pitting, but this is in really good condition for a cutlass of this age and everything is rock solid. This is a substantial model of sword and it is shorter but heavier than the British 1845 pattern.

£375 + P&P NEW - ON HOLD

* Many thanks to Terje Halvorsen for helping me identify this piece.
An 18th or 19th century Indian firangi sword, featuring a large 39 inch blade. In overall average condition, the blade features some pitting and has been cleaned. The blade is solid in the hilt. The hilt surface matches the blade and is all solid and complete, with the pommel stalk remaining solid also. As a rough guide, my hand fits in this hilt quite comfortably. A good honest example of the type.

£295 + P&P

The sword of Colonel Clifton de Neufville Orr Stockwell, of the 10th (North Lincolnshire) Regiment of Foot. The sword made by Henry Wilkinson and dating to 1858. Stockwell was commissioned as an Ensign in 1858, promoted Lieutenant in 1861, Captain in 1864, Major in 1877, Lieutenant Colonel in 1881 and Colonel in 1885. This sword has a solid history, having the officer's name and crest etched on the blade and dating to the year he was commissioned. Stockwell does not seem to have seen action, but was based in various locations with the 10th Foot, including Madras and Malta. The sword is in solid condition, though not the best display condition currently - this could be improved with a little work and cleaning. The brass has typical aged patina, which could be polished bright if desired. the blades has fairly light patina and clear etching, in generally good condition. The grip has suffered from nearly 30 years of use, followed by over a century of storage, with a few patched of loss to the shagreen and some loss of the wire. It could benefit from a clean up though and all in all I think this sword is in reasonable condition for the age and period of service, but most of all it has a very definite provenance and lots of extra research potential. Plus it is a quality sword by Wilkinson.

A Wilkinson infantry officer's sword, of WW1 period, in great condition. This example bears the hexagonal 'best quality' proof slug and from the serial number is dated probably to 1918 - unfortunately no name is recorded against it. However this may be explained by the fact that the blade bears the ISD stamp of the India Stores Depot. So why were the ISD purchasing a Wilkinson 'best quality' officer's sword in 1918? My guess is that it was a presentation piece to present to an Indian infantry officer. The sword is in great condition overall, in fact it is suitable for modern parade use - even the scabbard. The sword knot is also present. The guard looks a bit dull in these photos, but it just needs a bit of a clean - it is in 98% perfect condition. Everything is solid and the shagreen and grip wire are all good.

A Prussian or German sword of small proportions. I don't know whether this was made for a cadet or some sort of civic official, but it is quite small, having a 28 inch blade and just generally being scaled-down about 10% from a typical sword of this type. It is in generally good condition, with a bright blade, good shagreen and wire to the grip and the hilt in nice shape (with a period repair to one branch of the guard). And interesting and quite pretty little sword - would suit a smaller person!

A German or Prussian sword. I don't exactly know what this sword is, but the overall form is German and the design suggests a date around WW1. It has one langet missing and no grip covering, so I'd describe it as poor condition, but the blade is actually quite bright and the hilt assembly is all solid. Maybe a project for someone.

A Japanese wakizashi or large tanto with 13 inch blade. The tang is unsigned, but the blade appears to be of decent quality and I presume this weapon dates to the 19th century, though it may be older. It is in need of restoration and with professional attention would probably become a very nice piece. The tsuba and fuchi show some nice detail to the decoration. The same of the grip appears to be in good condition, though the silk tsuka ito would benefit from re-wrapping or replacement. The mekugi peg is missing, though the tsuka is quite secure on the tang just from friction. The habaki is not very good quality and is slightly split - I would replace this straight away. The scabbard is obviously original, though rather battered and missing elements. I'm sure it could be well restored easily enough though.

A very rare light cavalry trooper's sword, probably made for an Indian regiment. This model of sword rarely comes up for sale and seems to have been associated with Indian service, featuring a steel three-bar hilt, but with a folding inner guard 'drop' and a pipe-back blade. They seem to date to the 1850s or 1860s. This example is in very nice condition for the age - there is some wear to the leather grip, as to be expected, and the spring catch to the guard drop seems to have gone (meaning the drop hinges perfectly, but does not stay sprung in position). The blade is in lovely condition and the hilt is tight on the tang - the edge is fairly sharp. There is what appears to be a maker's mark on the blade but I do not recognise it.

A private purchase military kukri. This example is in overall good condition and probably dates to WW2 or soon after. The plated blade is in excellent condition - the leather of the sheath needs some treatment, but everything is complete and sound.

Three antique daggers - probably all late-Victorian or Edwardian (ALL SOLD):

A: A cutlery-hilted dagger. White metal (silver alloy?) grip, double-edged blade. There is a tiny amount of movement between the blade and hilt. SOLD

B: A white-hilted dagger. Not sure of the handle material (not ivory). Guard seems nickel-plated. All solid. SOLD

C: An antler-hilted dagger. All solid. SOLD
An Indian Army cavalry trooper's sword from around WW1. This type of sword was originally introduced in around the 1870s (perhaps after the India Arms Act of 1878 forbade Indian companies from making weapons), marrying a 1796 sabre type blade, called the 'Paget blade', to an 1821 pattern 3-bar hilt. Most were manufactured in Britain and exported to India (Mole, Thurkle and Wilkinson were the main makers). They were still being used in WW1 and were not replaced with the British 1908 pattern thrusting sword for all Indian cavalry until after the Great War. This model of sword usually features a steel hilt, but this example has a nickel-plated brass hilt, which makes me think that either it was wartime economy (as will many artillery officers' swords) or the hilt was made locally in India. The blade has some light pitting in some areas, but is in reasonable condition structurally. It is solid in the hilt without movement. The nickel-brass hilt is in quite good condition, though could benefit from cleaning, and the shagreen of the grip is in good condition - with no grip wire though. No scabbard.

A 19th century cavalry sabre, of unknown origin. I suspect that this may be German, but I'm not sure. The Spanish did have some sabres that were similar to this design. Whatever its origin, it was obviously originally a nice substantial sword, but has unfortunately been ravaged by age and damp, being pitted all over and having none of the grip covering left. Despite this, it is structurally sound and everything is solid.

A French 1845 model non-commissioned officer's sword, probably from around WW1. This model of sword was first introduced in 1845 and remained essentially unchanged until after WW1. It was carried by both junior officers and NCOs in the French army and inspired US infantry officer's swords. In 1855 the leather scabbard was replaced with a steel one, which often leads to these being called the 1855 model sword. At the end of the 19th century the two-ring steel scabbard was changed for a one-ring model and these swords were still in use during WW1, even after the 1882 model was introduced. This example is in quite decent condition - there is some denting to the brass guard and the grip wire has gone. The sword is quite stiff to get into and out of the scabbard for some reason. Other than these factors, the sword is in a good state, with a lovely bright blade, quite solid in the hilt (unusual for French infantry swords!) and the wooden grip intact in nice condition. These are very pleasing swords to hold with a surprising amount of authority in their blades for the size (30 inches).

A French 1896 pattern cavalry officer's sword. This private-purchase sword doesn't exactly follow the normal 1896 officer's sword format (slimmer blade and no floral decoration to the guard) and I wonder if it's an earlier experimentation in the 'fantaisie' theme. The long slender thrusting blade is in lovely condition, as are the bronze hilt fittings and the horn grip, with the wire wrap in place. There is a bit of movement in the guard, but everything is basically solid otherwise. With its matching single-ring scabbard.

An Indian khanjar dagger probably dating to the early 19th century, with the remains of silver koftgari decoration. The dagger is 16” overall with an 11.5” blade with a distinctive recurve. It has been sharpened on both sides and the point is reinforced for pushing through clothing and maille. The dagger must have been expensive in its day as the blade is finely inlaid in silver with a scene of a tiger hunting a deer. On one side of the blade this is clearer than the other but both sides have foliage near the hilt and at the section where the blade thickens into the reinforced point. The hilt also has traces of inlay although this has mostly gone.

A late-Victorian Rifles officer's sword by Wilkinson, to an officer of note. As you may notice, the hilt of this sword has been changed to a 3-bar as found in the artillery - the reason for this is unclear. The Wilkinson blade is numbered to 1900 and has etched on it the emblem of the Rifles and the initials and crests of Alfred Erskine Bonham-Carter (related to the actress of the same name). Bonham-Carter commissioned into the King's Royal Rifle Corps in January 1901. He served with the KRRC in South Africa in 1901-02. He served in WW1 as the Adjutant of the 8th Battalion of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. It could have been during this period that the hilt of this sword was changed to a 3-bar. The sword itself is in good condition, with some patina to the blade, but still quite bright and very crisp and clear etching. The blade is solid in the hilt and the hilt is in equally good condition, with all the shagreen and only a bit of damage to the grip wire near the pommel. The scabbard is in nice condition and of the India service type with nickel-plated fittings. A nice sword, an unusual combination and plenty of research to unlock. This sword will come with an assortment of links to online resources about A E Bonham-Carter.

A Royal Navy 1845 pattern cutlass ('converted' mark showing it was later shortened slightly) with various issue markings. Unfortunately from a collector's point of view, this example has clearly been used as a training cutlass for the cutlass exercise/drill. The blade has been blunted and shows numerous notches from training, as well as the steel guard becoming loose where the tang goes through. The hilt otherwise is fairly solid on the tang though, surprisingly. Apart from this damage from being used as a training weapon, the cutlass is actually in decent condition. However, I have priced it according to the damage it has sustained in use - still a nice piece of naval military history and there is a maker's name on the spine of the blade, which I cannot read.

A Victorian (probably 1850s or 1860s) light cavalry officer's sword, retailed by Hawkes of London. Hawkes were a top-end outfitter and this sword was probably made by Reeves of Birmingham (judging by the overall shape, proof slug and etching). It is a lovely quality sword of big proportions, with a 35.5 inch wide (1 1/4 inch) blade in excellent condition. The blade features a bright surface and deep etching, being solid in the hilt. The steel parts of the hilt and the scabbard could do with some light cleaning as they have some superficial light rust, but are essentially sound. The shagreen and silver grip wire are of good quality and in good condition. A very nice cavalry officer's sword that will not disappoint in the hand.

A 1796 pattern light cavalry officer's sabre. This example has a nice clean 32.5 inch blade which would benefit from further cleaning - with some light nicks in the service sharpened edge as pictured. The wooden grip is leather covered, 90% of which remains, with silver twistwire still intact and secure. The leather washer remains in place. The guard has some light pitting and a tiny bit of movement, but the hilt is secure on the tang and the tang peen is good. A nice example of the type which would benefit from some light restoration.

A lovely late-Victorian infantry officer's sword by Wilkinson identified to a high-ranking officer holding the Distinguished Service Order (DSO) and wounded in Gallipoli (WW1). This was the sword of Lieutenant-Colonel Edward Charles Philippi Bridges, who was born in April 1870 and was commissioned into the South Staffordshire Regiment in May 1890. This is the sword he purchased at that time. It is likely that at a later date he replaced this sword with one of the new pattern swords (1897 pattern) and that would explain the excellent condition of this one. Bridges, having been promoted to Captain, then served as an Adjutant in the Indian Volunteers [Nagpur Volunteer Rifles] from 1902-04 and was placed on the Reserve of Officers in December 1905. However, with the dawn of WW1 many officers who had retired from regular Army life returned to the service and Bridges was one of these.

Major E. C. P. Bridges, D.S.O. (South Staffordshire Regiment) commanded "C" Company. He was appointed Brigade M.G. Officer in March 1915. He took over command of battalion on 11/08/15 and was wounded while fighting at Gallipoli on 21/08/1915, being awarded the DSO for his actions.

SouthStaffordshire Regiment officers in 1917/18:

Of his subsequent part in the Great War, the following statement of services was submitted by Bridges himself to the War Office in December 1920:

"In the Spring of 1914, being then a Captain on the Reserve of Officers, and hearing from my brother Lieutenant-Colonel T. Bridges, D.S.O., then Military Attache in Brussels, of the extreme probability of an immediate war with Germany, I at once sold my farm in Matthew County, Virginia, U.S.A., and returned to England. I reported myself to the War Office and was informed if wanted I should be notified. About 6 August 1914, I was instructed to report myself at the depot of my old regiment at Lichefield, and against the advice of my medical adviser, I at once did so.

In February 1915, I was appointed Brigade Machine-Gun Officer to the 33rd Brigade. In this appointment I served continuously at Cape Helles, attached to the Royal Naval Division, and, after the Brigade returned to the 11th Division, at the Suvla landing. On 10 August 1915, I was appointed to the command of the Regiment [7/South Staffordshires], vice Lieutenant-Colonel A. H. Daukes, killed in action on the 9th. I remained in command of until severely wounded in an attack on 21 August. I was evacuated to England and was admitted to the Royal Free Hospital, London, until March 1916, after which I was attached to various Staffs and to assist in training work."

Only two officers from the 7th South Staffordshires emerged unscathed from the attack at Lala Baba in the afternoon of 21 August, the serious nature of Bridges’ wounds being summarised in the following report:

"At Suvla Bay on 21 August 1915, he [Bridges] was wounded by a rifle bullet in the right arm ... At 2 a.m. on 22 August aboard a hospital ship, under anaesthetic, a tube was put in the wound. He was transferred straight to England, arriving on 9 September 1915, and was in the Royal Free Hospital ... during which time he had an anaesthetic for the evacuation of pus ... the limb is flexed at a right angle on a splint and there is great muscular wasting on both upper and forearm."

Bridges was mentioned in General Sir Ian Hamilton’s despatch dated 11 December 1915 (London Gazette, 28 January 1916 refers), and was awarded the D.S.O.
In May 1917, while serving as Commandant of the 5th Army School of Musketry at Warloy, Bridges was badly concussed when his horse bolted into some barbed wire entanglements - he was unable to pull the horse up on account of his disabled arm - and was admitted to hospital back in England. However, following a short spell of light duty on being discharged, he was found to be unfit for further military service in February 1918, "owing to wounds and disabilities contracted on service", and was placed on the Reserve of Officers as a Lieutenant-Colonel in the same month.

This sword is probably not the one he took to the Great War, but it is certainly his first sword when he was a newly commissioned officer in 1890. It is a wonderful example of the type and shows the latest development of the 1845 pattern infantry officer's sword, before the blade design was revised in 1892 and the hilt in 1895. It features the straighter blade and hilt of these later examples and is in fantastic condition. The craftsmanship is Wilkinson's finest and the blade remains bright and with deep etching, solid in the hilt. The blade features Bridges' initials, family crest and motto, leaving no doubt as to the original owner. The brass guard and backstrap are in very good condition and the shagreen and gilt grip wire are near to perfect. The scabbard is in decent condition although missing the throat for some reason.

Note - Bridges' medals were previously sold in auction:

A Rifles officer's sword for restoration. There is plenty of work that could be done on this sword, but it seems to be functionally sound. The blade is solid in the hilt, the shagreen and grip wire is good and the proof slug suggests it was made by Thurkle of London, around the 1860s probably. It seems to have been service sharpened and underneath the dirt and light rust there seems to be some of the etching remaining. This sword should make a nice little project for someone.

A light cavalry officer's sword. This is a nice basic sword, but curiously having a plain un-etched blade. The blade looks like it was service sharpened to some degree. The shagreen is in good condition and there is only one bit of wire missing. It could benefit from some cleaning, but is fairly decent as it is.

A Rifles officer's sword, retailed by Watson & Co of Bombay (for an Indian-serving British or Indian officer), with an immaculate condition blade by Thurkle of London. This is a lovely Rifles officer's sword of perhaps the 1850s or 1860s. The blade is truly superb, almost like new, with original mirror polish contrasting with the frost etching. Everything is so crisp and clear. The blade is also top quality, being Thurkle's work (as shown by the proof slug with the central star). The hilt is in good condition and everything is tight and solid on the tang. The remains of the field service leather sword knot is still there and I have left it in place. The field service scabbard is also in decent condition. The shagreen is very good and the silver twistwire is 90% intact. The type of sword knot and scabbard probably indicate that this sword was still being carried by the 1870s. This sword handles nicely and is a proper fighting sword intended for service in India.

A Prussian 1811 'Blucher' sabre in relic but solid condition. This seems to be a fairly early example of the type, but time has not been kind to it! The hilt in particular is very pitted and the grip covering is completely gone, leaving bare wood. The blade however is only lightly pitted, though the pitting is all over the blade. The blade has a few nicks from another blade and it has been service sharpened. Despite the condition, the sword is all solid and essentially functional and it still a pleasing weapon in the hand.

A scarce pre-numbered early Wilkinson infantry officer's sword and brass Field Officer's scabbard. Wilkinson started making swords in 1844 and numbering them in 1854, therefore this sword dates to between those years. It has been service sharpened and could easily have been carried in various of the wars which happened in the late 1840s (eg. Sikh Wars) or 1850s (eg. Crimean War). The brass scabbard indicates that the officer reached the rank of Major or higher. The condition overally is very good, let down unfortunately by some pitting in the blade near the point (see photos). Otherwise the blade is bright and clean, with crisp detailed etching, as well as the early style of Henry Wilkinson's name and address. The hilt is solid on the tang, the folding drop works perfectly, the shagreen and grip wire is all 100%. The brass scabbard is in good condition. Curiously, the blade is slightly shorter than normal (30 inches rather than 32.5) and the scabbard matches this length, so presumably the officer ordered it that way, either because they were shorter than average or for some specific purpose. Naval officers' swords were of this length, so it could possible have belonged to an officer of Royal Marines, but that is pure conjecture. A very nice and scarce sword that was carried at a fascinating era with lots of interesting conflicts going on.

An Austrian 1904 pattern cavalry sabre. The pipe-backed blade in good condition, save for a little pitting near the tip. The guard with light pitting and the grip covering gone. The hilt is secure on the tang.

A 19th century Indian infantry officer's sword, for one of the semi-independent princely states. This sword is in overall nice condition with a bright (and sharpened) blade, clean hilt and shiny hardwood grip, with the grip wire in place. There is a little movement in the hilt on the tang and the very end of the blade has some rust damage, but this could be restored easily enough.

A late-Victorian Rifles officer's sword of top quality, retailed by illustrious outfitter Hobson and made (according to the proof slug) by the excellent Pillin of London. This sword would be in A1 perfect condition if it were not for a few areas of damp damage causing damage to the nickel plating (no structural damage though). 98% of the sword is in immaculate bright mirror polished nickel plated perfection. The blade is perfect, like new (but this sword was made probably in the 1880s). The guard is perfect, except where the original black patent leather sword knot is still in place and where damp has settled underneath and caused damage to the nickel plating and steel underneath. There are a couple of spots on the backstrap as well, but the rest is in perfect mirror polish. The shagreen grip still has the original black pigment and the silver twistwire on the grip is essentially perfect like new. The scabbard, like the guard, is perfect and in mirror polish, except where some damp has got to work on the lower portion in a few localised patches. The buff leather washer looks like new and everything is solid and tight on the tang. The black patent leather sword bag still survives with the sword and being contained inside this both protected the sword and ironically probably led to the very minimal but localised damp damage, probably from condensation which could not evaporate as normal (like under the sword knot). This sword is truly remarkable - like a time capsule from the 1880s. Hobson and Pillin were top notch companies and this was an expensive sword when new. It was looked after and the minimal localised damp damage would be well worth having professionally cleaned, which would make this sword about as perfect condition as any Victorian sword you could hope to find. The blade is simply stunning, with superb etching and polish looking like new. It is also a substantial and serious sword in the hand.

A French cavalry officer's non-regulation sword, in the 'fantaisie' style - a featured in this article. This is a lovely sword which has been in my collection for a while. It bears an aristocratic officer's monogram on the pommel, inlaid in silver. It is in lovely condition and has been recently cleaned lightly, though it is missing the scabbard. The bronze guard and pommel are in nice shape, the horn grip is good and secure and the grip wire is all present. There is a tiny bit of movement to the guard, but the hilt overall is solid. The long slender 36.5 inch blade is in lovely bright condition and well service sharpened. The blade is marked to Coulaux & Co of Klingenthal and the hilt is stamped to Petitfils - this is a top quality piece which would have been expensive to purchase for the French officer who ordered it. These are difficult to date, but in my opinion is probably from around 1885-1895, as the blades seem inspired by the 1882 cavalry model and some feature hilts in the 1882 infantry style. The number of bars on this hilt may indicate an officer of heavy cavalry or dragoons.