Antique 18th Century Silver Mounted Turkish Ottoman Karabela Sword Polish Vivat
Rare antique, 18th century, silver-mounted Turkish Ottoman, Polish sword, Karabela, with a hilt of characteristic Karabela form comprised of a grip with grip-scales, carved in low relief chevrons, secured to the tang of the blade by three iron-rivets, enclosed by silver straps. A solid silver crossguard with bud shaped terminals and langets, the outer side finely engraved with flower head, the inner side engraved in Arabic with Islamic calendar Hijri Date 1130 A.H. corresponding to Gregorian calendar years 1717 - 1718 A.D.
A slightly curved sturdy hand-forged steel blade, with a false edge – yelmen cut on each face with full-length shallow fuller, etched on the outer side, Vivat Narodowa Kawaleria, Crescent Moon Face below, and the heraldic cartouche in the form of drapery ermine stole with the letter "C" on the center and topped by the Polish nobleman plumed hat Kolpak.
Kawaleria Narodowa (National Cavalry) was formed in 1775 AD.
This type of engravings appeared on the Polish swords' blades with various hilts in the last quarter of the 18th century.
The swords with Karabela form hilt were manufactured during the 17th -18th century in the Turkish Ottoman Empire and Poland.
Some Karabela swords used in 17th-18th century Poland were imported from the Ottoman Empire or obtained as war booty by Polish soldiers in the war with Ottomans. Some were manufactured in Poland by the Polish Armenian craftsmen in the city Lwow, so sometimes it is impossible to tell, even by experts, where in fact, the karabela was made; in Poland, or Ottoman Empire where Ottoman Armenian craftsmen made many karabela swords.
However, since the silver crossguard is engraved in Arabic with Islamic calendar Hijri Date, 1130 A.H. (corresponding to Gregorian calendar years 1717 - 1718 A.D.), this sword is an Islamic Turkish Ottoman Karabela which was used by the Polish nobility. The etching on the blade was added in the late 18th century during the reign of the Stanisław August Poniatowski - King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania from 1764 to 1795.
CONDITION: Showing age and usage. A minor vertical forging flaw in the lower part of the blade at the height of the false edge (yelmen), some combat notches on the edge of the blade, etchings slightly worn.
Age cracks in the hilt (as common in these types). However, the sword is in good condition considering its age to be over 300 years old.
Overall length: 87 cm (34.25 inches)
Length of the blade: 73.4 cm (28.9 inches)
Width of the blade at the widest point at the yelmen: 3.6 cm (1.42 inches)
The thickness of the blade spine: 5 mm (3/16 Inches)
WEIGHT: 734 Grams
REFERENCES: To view the Polish swords with related engravings, please see the link below:
PROVENANCE: This sword and other antique Polish arms and armor that I recently listed come from an old Canadian collection of Polish antiques and art.
We have attached to the listing a photo of this collection that we took at the time of purchase, showing this sword together with other swords: the first sword from the right side.
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