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Kashmir, India

Sword and scabbard nineteenth century

Gold, diamonds, emeralds, rubies, steel, wood, velvet and silk | RCIN 11410

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  • The hilt of this sword is made of solid gold encrusted with diamonds, rubies and emeralds, with a large circular engraved emerald at the centre. At the top or forte of the wavy-edged blade is an ornamental etched panel and an inscription on the other side records the date according to the Hindu calendar 'Samvat 1921' (i.e. 1864 AD) and the Maharaja's name. The impressive gemstones and exceptionally fine watered crucible steel blade suggests that this may have been the personal sword of the Maharaja of Kashmir.

    Provenance

    Presented to King Edward VII, when Prince of Wales, during his tour of India in 1875-76 by Ranbir Singh, Maharaja of Kashmir. The Prince of Wales entered the hill state of Jammu, within sight of the Himalayas, on 20 January 1876, mounted on an elephant with the Maharaja of Kashmir, Ranbir Singh. This sword was presented to the Prince by the Maharaja just as he departed Jammu, and the Illustrated London News reported to its readers that the sword was 'worth at the lowest calculation £10,000'.

  • Medium and techniques

    Gold, diamonds, emeralds, rubies, steel, wood, velvet and silk

  • Category
  • Alternative title(s)

    Sabre and scabbard