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An Amazing, Signed, 500 Year Old Ancestral Samurai Sword Last Used in WW2
A truly exceptional superb and ancient Nagamaki Naoshi 'uno kubi zukuri' shaped samurai sword, made around 500 years ago, and last used and mounted for a Japanese officer serving his Emperor in the Pacific campaign in WW2. One of the best 'ancestral family bladed' shingunto katana of its type we have seen in years. Signed blade with the signature Seki, Kanesada Saku [Kanesada of Seki made this] and dated 1521. This wonderful sword was surrendered to a British officer and kept as a souvenir since 1945. An absolute gem of a blade, now repolished and looks amazing. Unokubi Zukuri blade, known as the 'cormorant's neck' blade form that is patterned after the shape of the Nagamaki, the powerful long-handled sword popular between the 12th and 14th centuries. Notable for the strongly relieved shinogi-ji and o-kissaki, the Unokubi-Zukuri provides excellent balance in a strong cutting blade. The mune (back) of the blade is also different from the more usual form in that it starts out like most blades, but after a third of the way down, the mune thins out rapidly into a long thin false edge. It has two hi from the habaki on one side and a wide single hi on the other. Silver foiled habaki. It has its original antique Edo period saya, decorated in cinnabar colour lacquer with buffalo horn kurigata, re- covered in combat leather for the war period. Typical 1936 pattern tsuka and tsuba but deeply bespoke curved to follow the very deep and beautiful curvature of the blade. The saya has a hole at the base for the blade to be mounted with sageo loop. The type of conflicts that this sword would very likely have seen service in would have been the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600. Initially, Tokugawa Ieyasu's Eastern Army had 75,000 men, while the Western Army numbered 120,000. Ieyasu had also sneaked in a supply of arquebuses. Knowing that the Tokugawa forces were heading towards Osaka, Ishida decided to abandon his positions and marched to Sekigahara. Even though the Western army had tremendous tactical advantages, Ieyasu had already been in contact with many of the daimyo in the Western Army for months, promising them land and leniency after the battle should they switch sides.

The battle started when Fukushima Masanori, the leader of the Tokugawa advance guard, charged north from the Eastern Army's left flank along the Fuji River against the Western Army's right centre. The ground was still muddy from the previous day's rain, so the conflict there devolved into something more primal. Ieyasu then ordered attacks from his right and his centre against the Western Army’s left in order to support Fukushima's attack.

This left Mori Terumoto's Western Army's centre unscathed, so Ishida ordered this unit under the command of Shimazu Yoshihiro to reinforce his right flank. Shimazu refused as daimyo of the day only listened to respected commanders, which Ishida was not.

Recent scholarship by Professor Yoshiji Yamasaki of Toho University has indicated that the Mori faction had reached a secret agreement with the Tokugawa two weeks earlier, pledging neutrality at the decisive battle in exchange for a guarantee of territorial preservation, and was a strategic decision on Mori Terumoto's part that later backfired.

Fukushima's attack was slowly gaining ground, but this came at the cost of exposing their flank to attack from across the Fuji River by Otani Yoshitsugu, who took advantage of this opportunity. Just past Otani's forces were those of Kobayakawa Hideaki on Mount Matsuo.

Kobayakawa was one of the daimyo who had been courted by Tokugawa. Even though he had agreed to defect to the Tokugawa side, in the actual battle he was hesitant and remained neutral. As the battle grew more intense, Ieyasu finally ordered his arquebuses to fire at Kobayakawa's position on Mount Matsuo to force a choice. At that point Kobayakawa joined the battle as a member of the Eastern Army. His forces charged Otani's position, which did not end well for Kobayakawa. Otani's forces had dry gunpowder, so they opened fire on the turncoats, making the charge of 16,000 men mostly ineffective. However, he was already engaging forces under the command of Todo Takatora, Kyogoku Takatsugu, and Oda Yuraku when Kobayakawa charged. At this point, the buffer Otani established was outnumbered. Seeing this, Western Army generals Wakisaka Yasuharu, Ogawa Suketada, Akaza Naoyasu, and Kutsuki Mototsuna switched sides, turning the tide of battle. A 25.5 inch long blade tsuba to tip.

Code: 22430Price: 5295.00 GBP

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A Stunning King George IIIrd 1756 Pat.Dragoon Flintlock, The EIC Cavalry
With finest walnut stock with amazing natural age patina, and traditional brass furniture and two British EIC heart marks, one on the stock the other on the barrel. From the historical 'Siege of Seringapatam' used by the British 19th & 25th Light Dragoons, with the East India Company. The 19th played a major role in the Anglo-Mysore Wars and Anglo-Maratha Wars. Their first campaign was against Tipu Sultan of Mysore from 1790 to 1792. After defeating Tipu, the 19th were on garrison duty until 1799 when war broke out with Tipu again. This time, the Sultan was killed during the Battle of Seringapatam.

In 1800, the 19th fought Dhoondia Wao's rebel army and in 1803, led by Major-General Arthur Wellesley (who later became the Duke of Wellington), they participated in the Battle of Assaye. In this battle, the outnumbered British troops defeated a Maratha army and the regiment was subsequently awarded the battle honour of "Assaye" and presented with an honorary colour.
They were stationed at Cheyloor in 1802, at Arcot in 1803, in Bombay in 1804, and at Arcot again from 1805 to 1806. The regiment was summoned to Vellore on the night of 10 July 1806 to rescue the 69th Regiment of Foot who had been the victims of a revolt by Indian sepoys. The 25th Dragoons (raised for service in India by F E Gwyn on 9 March 1794) was renumbered 22nd (Light) Dragoons in that year. This 22nd (Light) Dragoons regiment served throughout the Napoleonic Wars, which began in 1805, and was disbanded in 1820.
Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan, the rulers of the Kingdom of Mysore, offered much resistance to the British forces. Having sided with the French during the Revolutionary war, the rulers of Mysore continued their struggle against the Company with the four Anglo-Mysore Wars. Mysore finally fell to the Company forces in 1799, with the death of Tipu Sultan.
.As with all our antique guns no license is required as they are all unrestricted antique collectables. Very good and tight action. A horn tipped ramrod. As with all our antique guns they must be considered as inoperable with no license required and they are all unrestricted antique collectables

Code: 22429Price: 1895.00 GBP

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A Very Good Victorian 19th Century Royal Artillery Officer's Pouch
Patent leather with gilt badge of an artillery cannon. A cross belt is two connected straps worn across the body to distribute the weight of loads, carried at the hip, across the shoulders and trunk. It is similar to two shoulder belts joined with a single buckle at the center of the chest. The cross belt was predominantly used from the 1700s (American Revolutionary War) to the 1840s – they were not part of a soldier's equipment in the American Civil War and Anglo-Zulu War/First Boer War.

For most line infantry, skirmishers, light infantry, grenadiers and guard regiments during much of Europe's Age of Gunpowder, either a cross belt or two shoulder belts were worn.[citation needed] One configuration for the belts would be the cartridge box on the right hip and sword scabbard on the left. Such equipment would be attached to the belt at its lowest point, where it rests on the hip. Officers almost never carried muskets or rifles, so they typically wore only one shoulder belt, such as for the pistol cartridge box or for a sabre scabbard. As officers were often aristocratic and used many independent symbols for their family, rank, and command, their uniforms and gear organisation could be highly variable.

For British infantry, the cross belt had a metal belt plate with the regiment of the soldier inscribed on it

Code: 22427Price: 265.00 GBP

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100 Year Celebration 'Hugely Discounted, Well Below Cost!!' Samurai Sword
A beautiful original antique Edo period long Handachi samurai sword, as a big thank you to all our regulars to celebrate 100th anniversary of our family business in Brighton, we are offering, with our compliments, this wonderful sword, well below cost, and where the buyer can SAVE AN AMAZING £2,750. We have been making just a few very special discounted well below cost items this year as a special offer intended for our regulars, but open to all first come first served basis. This is our sixth so far this year and the previous five all sold within a day or so! A Delightful Long Antique 18th Century Shinshinto Han Dachi Edo samuraI sword, with very fine shakudo mounts, a most unusual carved iron square section tsuba and a blade with a good gunome hamon in original Edo polish. This mount has unique style called han-dachi (or han-tachi) style, that is a sword that is styled between the traditional tachi and traditional katana. All the metal fittings are tachi style. But the designs on them are made as katana style. So this sword was used as katana style that wore the blade in the obi [the waist belt] with the cutting edge upward. All original Edo period fittings. Small lacquer losses to original ishime stone finish saya. The sword will come complete with a complimentary display stand and silk storage bag. The lacquer saya can be easily restored if required, but the wear flaking is totally inkeeping with its age. 37 inches overall in saya, blade tsuba to tip 27.5 Only available for immediate sale, no px or layaway, no other discounts or complimentary vouchers apply to this item

Code: 22425Price: 2650.00 GBP

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A Relic, Trench Recovered French WW1 Citroen Grenade
French Trench Citroen Foug Grenade TM-03. As soon as April 1915, the military manufacture of Foug, in Meurthe et Moselle near Toul, began to produce simple grenades models, including a copy of the famous German stick grenade, and two 'asparagus' grenades (a long then a shorter) in pre-fragmented steel equipped with a rudimentary wooden igniting percussion plug.

The grenade Citron Foug modèle 1916 is a evolution of this 'asparagus' grenade, mainly designed to reduce the weight and improve the fragmentation properties. This latter point conditioned precisely the profile of the body, whose influence had been found to be higher on the fragmentation then the shape of the grooves themselves.

The igniting system was rudimentary, made of a percussion block moving inside a wooden plug equipped with a starter, and linked to a detonator. With no other safety device than a simple spring, it was quite dangerous despite the addition of a removable safety cap in thin iron plate (with flat, then conical, then hemispheric top) covering the ignition plug during transportation.

Its 'citron' ('lemon') nickname was obviously given by its very recognizable profile. Despite its rudimentary design and its relative dangerosity, its lean manufacturing cost and process allowed this grenade to be made by a lot of manufacturers and available in big quantities, and therefore massively used from 1916 until the end of the war. Inert empty and safe, but not suitable for export or for sale to under 18's..

Code: 22424Price: 90.00 GBP

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Original Two Piece Floor Tile Removed From RMS Titanic Before The Sinking.
One of a number of floor tiles removed from the 2nd Class Lounge of RMS Titanic. Tiles from the Titanic and her sister ship the Olympic were removed due to leak tests [and replaced with carpeting] after April 7th. The removed tiles were sent to the ship builders Harland and Wolff and relaid in their drawing office in Belfast. This tile was purchased from the Harland and Wolff workshops in Belfast some time ago. Complete with a letter of authenticity from John Cross of White Star Line International, Titanic historian for the Falkirk Titanic Society and the White Star Line Preservation Society. The tile is a typical two part type, as was most popular with all the various tiled areas of the Titanic and Olympic, with a separate centre section, and it's condition is good but with some small edge losses to one side. RMS Titanic was the largest passenger steamship in the world when she set off on her maiden voyage from Southampton, England to New York City on 10 April 1912. Four days into the crossing, on 14 April 1912, she struck an iceberg and sank, resulting in the deaths of 1,517 people in one of the deadliest peacetime maritime disasters in history.

An Olympic-class passenger liner, Titanic was owned by the White Star Line and constructed at the Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast, Ireland (now Northern Ireland). She set sail for New York City with 2,223 people on board; the high casualty rate when the ship sank was due in part to the fact that, although complying with the regulations of the time, the ship carried lifeboats for only 1,178 people. A disproportionate number of men died due to the women and children first protocol that was followed.

Titanic was designed by some of the most experienced engineers, and used some of the most advanced technologies available at the time. It was a great shock to many that, despite the extensive safety features, Titanic sank. The frenzy on the part of the media about Titanic's famous victims, the legends about the sinking, the resulting changes to maritime law, and the discovery of the wreck have contributed to the interest in Titanic.

Code: 22422Price: 900.00 GBP

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An Early Crusades Period 10th Century Byzantine Greek Fire 'Grenade'
Of semi ovoid form. A rare collectable ancient artefact and a wonderful conversation piece. Circa 10th century AD. A grey ceramic globular vessel with conical bottom and narrow neck with a graduated rim; a carved roundel band below. With an incised pattern band at the top midsection.Bottom section with chipping. History of the grenade;
Although grenades rose to prominence as weapons during the 20th century, grenades have a very long history.

They are first thought to have been used by the Byzantine Empire from around the seventh century AD. Clay vessels were filled with flammable liquid known as Greek fire and flung at the enemy.
They were often piled into catapults to increase the range and devastation they caused.
They were popular weapons in naval battles as the fire could easily spread on ships and cause devastation. In its earliest form, Greek fire was hurled onto enemy forces by firing a burning cloth-wrapped ball, perhaps containing a flask, using a form of light catapult, most probably a seaborne variant of the Roman light catapult or onager. These were capable of hurling light loads, around 6 to 9 kg (13 to 20 lb), a distance of 350–450 m (380–490 yd). Greek fire, was invented in ca. 672, and is ascribed by the chronicler Theophanes to Kallinikos, an architect from Heliopolis in the former province of Phoenice, by then overrun by the Muslim conquests. The historicity and exact chronology of this account is open to question: Theophanes reports the use of fire-carrying and siphon-equipped ships by the Byzantines a couple of years before the supposed arrival of Kallinikos at Constantinople. If this is not due to chronological confusion of the events of the siege, it may suggest that Kallinikos merely introduced an improved version of an established weapon. The historian James Partington further thinks it likely that Greek fire was not in fact the discovery of any single person, but "invented by chemists in Constantinople who had inherited the discoveries of the Alexandrian chemical school".Indeed, the 11th-century chronicler George Kedrenos records that Kallinikos came from Heliopolis in Egypt, but most scholars reject this as an error. Kedrenos also records the story, considered rather implausible, that Kallinikos' descendants, a family called "Lampros" ("Brilliant"), kept the secret of the fire's manufacture, and continued doing so to his day.

The invention of Greek fire came at a critical moment in the Byzantine Empire's history: weakened by its long wars with Sassanid Persia, the Byzantines had been unable to effectively resist the onslaught of the Muslim conquests. Within a generation, Syria, Palestine and Egypt had fallen to the Arabs, who in ca. 672 set out to conquer the imperial capital of Constantinople. The Greek fire was utilized to great effect against the Muslim fleets, helping to repel the Muslims at the first and second Arab sieges of the city. Records of its use in later naval battles against the Saracens are more sporadic, but it did secure a number of victories, especially in the phase of Byzantine expansion in the late 9th and early 10th centuries. Utilisation of the substance was prominent in Byzantine civil wars, chiefly the revolt of the thematic fleets in 727 and the large-scale rebellion led by Thomas the Slav in 821–823. In both cases, the rebel fleets were defeated by the Constantinopolitan Imperial Fleet through the use of Greek fire The Byzantines also used the weapon to devastating effect against the various Rus' raids to the Bosporus, especially those of 941 and 1043, as well as during the Bulgarian war of 970–971, when the fire-carrying Byzantine ships blockaded the Danube.

The importance placed on Greek fire during the Empire's struggle against the Arabs would lead to its discovery being ascribed to divine intervention. The Emperor Constantine Porphyrogennetos (r. 945–959), in his book De Administrando Imperio, admonishes his son and heir, Romanos II (r. 959–963), to never reveal the secrets of its construction, as it was "shown and revealed by an angel to the great and holy first Christian emperor Constantine" and that the angel bound him "not to prepare this fire but for Christians, and only in the imperial city". As a warning, he adds that one official, who was bribed into handing some of it over to the Empire's enemies, was struck down by a "flame from heaven" as he was about to enter a church. As the latter incident demonstrates, the Byzantines could not avoid capture of their precious secret weapon: the Arabs captured at least one fireship intact in 827, and the Bulgars captured several siphons and much of the substance itself in 812/814. This, however, was apparently not enough to allow their enemies to copy it . The Arabs for instance employed a variety of incendiary substances similar to the Byzantine weapon, but they were never able to copy the Byzantine method of deployment by siphon, and used catapults and grenades instead. In its earliest form, Greek fire was hurled onto enemy forces by firing a burning cloth-wrapped ball, perhaps containing a flask, using a form of light catapult, most probably a seaborne variant of the Roman light catapult or onager. These were capable of hurling light loads—around 6 to 9 kg (13 to 20 lb)—a distance of 350–450 m (383–492 yd). Later technological improvements in machining technology enabled the devising of a pump mechanism discharging a stream of burning fluid (flame thrower) at close ranges, devastating wooden ships in naval warfare. Such weapons were also very effective on land when used against besieging forces.

Greek fire continued to be mentioned during the 12th century, and Anna Komnene gives a vivid description of its use in a – possibly fictional – naval battle against the Pisans in 1099. However, although the use of hastily improvised fireships is mentioned during the 1203 siege of Constantinople by the Fourth Crusade, no report confirms the use of the actual Greek fire, which had apparently fallen out of use, either because its secrets were forgotten, or because the Byzantines had lost access to the areas – the Caucasus and the eastern coast of the Black Sea – where the primary ingredients were to be found. Approx 5 inches across

Code: 22421Price: 795.00 GBP

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A Fabulous Victorian Uniform of a Captain of the Pembrokeshire Hussars
blue cloth with white facings, silver bullion lace and braid trim including pointed ornamental cuffs, Austrian knot devices to back, 17 loops, with plain silver plated buttons to chest, shoulder cords with regimental buttons and 3 embroidered rank stars, white silk lining, pair matching overalls with double silver lace stripe. Good Condition, the lace generally bright overall. The officer who wore this superb uniform served alongside Col Cropper as a fellow Captain of the Pembrokeshire Hussars. As we know not this uniform's officer's name we show with the gallery the details of Col. Croppers distinguished career in the Zulu War and both Boer Wars. Hussar refers to a number of types of light cavalry. This type of cavalry first appeared in the Hungarian army of King Matthias Corvinus. The title and distinctive dress of these horsemen was subsequently widely adopted by light cavalry regiments in European and other armies. The hussars played a prominent role as cavalry in the Napoleonic Wars (1796–1815). As light cavalrymen mounted on fast horses, they would be used to fight skirmish battles and for scouting. Most of the great European powers raised hussar regiments. The armies of France, Austria, Prussia, and Russia had included hussar regiments since the mid-18th century. In the case of Britain, four light dragoon regiments were converted to hussars in 1806–1807.

Hussars were notoriously impetuous, and Napoleon was quoted as stating that he would be surprised for a hussar to live beyond the age of 30, due to their tendency to become reckless in battle, exposing their weaknesses in frontal assaults. The hussars of Napoleon created the tradition of sabrage, the opening of a champagne bottle with a sabre. Moustaches were universally worn by Napoleonic-era hussars; the British hussars were the only moustachioed troops in the British Army—leading to their being taunted as being "foreigners", at times. French hussars also wore cadenettes, braids of hair hanging on either side of the face, until the practice was officially proscribed when shorter hair became universal.

The uniform of the Napoleonic hussars included the pelisse, a short fur-edged jacket which was often worn slung over one shoulder in the style of a cape and was fastened with a cord. This garment was extensively adorned with braiding (often gold or silver for officers) and several rows of buttons. The dolman or tunic, which was also decorated in braid, was worn under it. The hussar's accoutrements included a Hungarian-style saddle covered by a shabraque, a decorated saddlecloth with long, pointed corners surmounted by a sheepskin.

On active service, the hussar normally wore reinforced breeches which had leather on the inside of the leg to prevent them from wearing due to the extensive time spent in the saddle. On the outside of such breeches, running up each outer side, was a row of buttons, and sometimes a stripe in a different colour. A shako or fur kolpac (busby) was worn as headwear. The colours of the dolman, pelisse and breeches varied greatly by regiment, even within the same army.

The French hussar of the Napoleonic period was armed with a brass-hilted sabre, a carbine and sometimes with a brace of pistols, although these were often unavailable. The British hussar was armed with, in addition to his firearms, the 1796-pattern light-cavalry sabre. British hussars also introduced the sabretache (a leather pouch hung from the swordbelt) to the British Army.

A famous military commander in Bonaparte's army who began his military career as a hussar was Marshal Ney, who, after being employed as a clerk in an iron works, joined the 5th Hussars in 1787. He rose through the ranks of the hussars in the wars of Belgium and the Rhineland (1794–1798), fighting against the forces of Austria and Prussia before receiving his marshal's baton in 1804, after the Emperor Napoleon's coronation.

Code: 22420Price: 2750.00 GBP

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A Superb Medieval, 13th - 14th Century Carved Stone Head of a Bearded Man
A most captivating piece of original medieval sculpture. Probably a portrait of a person connected to the construction of the medieval building that it once adorned. Possibly even a mason that worked on the building. At some time it's body has been very well conserved and restored around some cracking, probably in the last century. The head was the chief symbolic part of the body for Western culture in the Middle Ages, from the waning days of the Roman empire to the Renaissance. Since antiquity it signified not only the intellect, the centre of power, but was also regarded as the seat of the soul. The face is not only central to identity, but is also the primary vehicle for human expression, emotion, and character. As such, the depiction of the head becomes a true test of the quality of the artist and a telling indicator of style. By focusing on this one genre of object, the Middle Ages can be seen in a new light. Few sculpted heads of the Middle Ages were portraits in the modern sense. The reasons for representing the human face were far more various than recording the physical likeness of an individual. During the High Middle Ages, portraiture did not rely on likeness so much as attributes, coats of arms, inscriptions, and other identifying signs. Thus individual selfhood was subsumed in broader forms of corporate identities. At the same time, the notion of a "true" portrait encompassed such miraculous images as the Veil of Saint Veronica, imprinted with the face of Christ.

By the fourteenth century, veristic portraiture re-emerged as a supplement to symbolic representations of identity, especially in the main European capitals—Paris, London, Prague [Verism refers to a hyper-realistic portrayal of the subject's facial characteristics]. A 1925 photograph in the gallery [for information only] of early stone sculpture on display at the Cloisters that was originally acquired by George Grey Barnard (1863–1938), a distinguished American sculptor, and an avid collector and dealer of medieval art. We show in the gallery a 14th century carved heas in Southwell Minster, and a row of four carved heads in St Magnus' Cathedral in Kirkwall Orkney, probably carved by Durham masons. The second head from the left is incredibly similar to our example. Founded in 1137 by Earl Rognvaldr, in honour of his murdered uncle St Magnus aka Earl Magnus Erlendson. At least some of the early masons that worked on the cathedral came from Durham. One of the hidden gems of St Magnus' is that in the best traditions of cathedrals everywhere the stonemasons decorated the cathedral with little carved heads. They're supposedly caricatures of some of the masons or of their foreman but no-one really knows for sure, and some are definitely not totally human, with half man/half beast faces: Our head is 7.5 inches x 5.25 inches x 5 inches. Weight approx 3.5 kilos

Code: 22419Price: 1295.00 GBP

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A Fabulous Napoleonic Peninsular & Waterloo Era British Light Dragoon Sword
This British officer's sword, used by an officer under Wellington's command has a wonderful Kilij style blade with a double edged bottom section. It is a superb British sword cutlers representation of the Kilij and Shamshir swords captured at the Battle of The Nile, in the Egypt Campaign at the Battle of Aboukir and the Battle of Alexandria, and inspired so many sword designs of both the French and British protagonists. It has its London maker engraved cartouch on the scabbard throat, that, although worn and indistinct, is likely by Thomas Gill of London. When one holds this sword one can easily imagine the great turmoil and conflicts of battle its owners have seen, in fact some of the greatest cavalry charges and conflagrations that have ever been witnessed. In the early part of the 19th century the great Allied Powers conflict against Napoleon was certainly the greatest challenge the British Army and Navy had ever faced. In his time Napoleon was seen the greatest threat to Europe in the 19th century as Hitler's Germany was to the 20th century. His storming conquests across the whole of Europe seemed unstoppable. But Britain and her Allies combined to halt his insatiable desire to vanquish all who defied his dastardly attempt to rule the Western World. During this volatile time the great British Cavalry regiments formed the Army's fearsome offensive phalanx, and their courage, audacity and effectiveness were [and still are] legendary.

Code: 22418Price: 1695.00 GBP

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