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photograph of current display in the Grand Vestibule

A display highlighting the interaction between the monarchy and the wider world


Sabre and scabbard

RCIN 62867

Grand Vestibule, Windsor Castle

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An Indian dagger: the ivory handle with bifurcated pommel divided by gilt-metal side-plates; the steel ferrule with gilt flowers and foliage.  Watered steel back-edged blade with two narrow rectanglular cut-outs set with seed pearls.  Red velvet

Dagger and sheath ©

Bhopal was distinctive among the Indian princely states for being governed by a succession of widows who ruled with the consent of their people and the British Government. Edward, Prince of Wales (later King Edward VIII) spent three days there during his visit to India in 1921. He was formally received by the Begum, Sultan Jahan (1858–1930), at the Sadar Manzil palace, where a state banquet was held. An account of the tour recorded that the Begum was 'a perfect hostess', wearing 'a belted robe of rich light blue brocade embroidered in purple, and a "burqa"’. 'Although her features are hidden from the world, she is, nevertheless, as active and as powerful as any Indian Prince'. This sabre and matching dagger were presented on that occasion. The hilt of the sabre is set on one side with seed pearls forming the words 'H.R.H. The Prince of Wales' and engraved on the other with the arms of Bhopal.