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Caucasian Circassia

Dagger (Qama), bi-knife and scabbard nineteenth century

RCIN 37942

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The blade of this qama or khama is forged welded iron and steel with a welded steel edge and a single offset central fuller on each side. The use of rich and exotic materials show the dagger is both a weapon and a status symbol. The blade is overlaid in gold with a cartouche in Persian, which reads ‘Bazli’, possibly the maker’s name. The top of the scabbard is inscribed in Persian with the name ‘Hamza’, possibly that of the owner.

Probably acquired by the Prince of Wales, later King Edward VII, late nineteenth century