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Another 180 Books Arrived on Saturday! Plus Dozens of Swords, Pistols, Arms and Armour. To Our Regulars Our Weekly E.mail Sendouts Resumed Today

Another 180 Books Arrived on Saturday! Plus Dozens of Swords, Pistols, Arms and Armour. To Our Regulars Our Weekly E.mail Sendouts Resumed Today

We have simply had too little time to list, catalogue and photograph all our new additions.

New items arriving including several original US Civil War revolvers and sabres, a jolly rare piece of WW2 Section XII SOE sabotage kit, an amazing presentation huge leather bound tome filled with paintings of French Ancient Regime and First Empire army uniforms and swords helmets etc. A stunning collection of sword sticks of the highest quality,

We are trying our best to resume our usual latest additions send-out early this coming week. Apologies to our disappointed regulars.  read more

Code: 25236

Price
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A Fine & Most Beautiful Japanese Katana, Signed Mitsuhiro Saku Late Koto to Shinto Period

A Fine & Most Beautiful Japanese Katana, Signed Mitsuhiro Saku Late Koto to Shinto Period

A very attractive samurai katana, around 400 to 450 years old in a superb colour livery of blue-green tsuka-ito and a two colour saya of brown ishime {stone finish} and bright black urushi ribbed lacquer to the top quarter section, bound with white sageo, and a polished carved buffalo horn kurigata and sayajiri. The blade is signed, Mitsuhiro and shows a beautiful gunome hamon. The pair of menuki are a pair of caught Warasubo spine toothed fish, one with a mouse foraging on the top of its body. The mud flats of Japan’s Ariake Sea are home to a creature that is reportedly as delicious as it is disgusting-looking. Introducing the “Warasubo”, an eel-like xenomorph goby fish that for obvious reasons is known as the “Alien of Ariake Sea”, found in a large bay in Kyushu,

The fuchi kashira tsuka fittings are a pair of Edo period iron Higo school inset with silver droplets either representing a heavenly constellation, or snowflakes falling at night.

Made and used in the time of the greatest battle in samurai history. The Battle of Sekigahara Sekigahara no Tatakai) was a decisive battle on October 21, 1600 that preceded the establishment of the Tokugawa shogunate. Initially, Tokugawa's eastern army had 75,000 men, while Ishida's western army numbered 120,000. Tokugawa had also sneaked in a supply of arquebuses. Knowing that Tokugawa was heading towards Osaka, Ishida decided to abandon his positions and marched to Sekigahara. Even though the Western forces had tremendous tactical advantages, Tokugawa had already been in contact with many daimyo in the Western Army for months, promising them land and leniency after the battle should they switch sides.

Tokugawa's forces started the battle when Fukushima Masanori, the leader of the advance guard, charged north from Tokugawa'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. Tokugawa then ordered attacks from his right and his centre against the Western Army's left in order to support Fukushima's attack.

This left the Western Army's centre unscathed, so Ishida ordered this unit under the command of Shimazu Yoshihiro to reinforce his right flank. Shimazu refused as daimyos 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 daimyos that had been courted by Tokugawa. Even though he had agreed to defect to Tokugawa's side, in the actual battle he was hesitant and remained neutral. As the battle grew more intense, Tokugawa finally ordered arquebuses to fire at Kobayakawa's position on Mount Matsuo to force Kobayakawa to make his choice. At that point Kobayakawa joined the battle as a member of the Eastern Army. His forces charged ?tani'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

The top section of the blade, near the kissaki has two very small areas of natural age pitting  read more

Code: 25237

5950.00 GBP

A Very Fine & Very Beautiful 'Samurai Pony' Fitted Katana, Signed and Attributed to Hizen Kuni ju Tadayoshi, Circa 1640. With A Simply Stunning Blade with An Amazing Hamon

A Very Fine & Very Beautiful 'Samurai Pony' Fitted Katana, Signed and Attributed to Hizen Kuni ju Tadayoshi, Circa 1640. With A Simply Stunning Blade with An Amazing Hamon

The whole sword is an fine beauty, fitted with excellent quality and finest gold enhanced mounts, Its fittings are stunning, Edo Period, koshirae mounts of depictions of galloping and grazing samurai ponies throughout. This fine samurai sword has been completely untouched since it arrived from Japan as an esteemed antique gift some 145 years ago, but has now just returned from a blade polish conservation that took four months and looks amazing, The new photos have now been added.

The signed blade bears a stunning and most beautiful hamon temper line, with incredible extravagance and activity.

The fushi is sublime, premier quality, with a pure hammered gold pony over a shakudo nanako ground, and it is signed by the fitting maker. The menuki are shakudo ponies, and the tsuba of a grazing pony enhanced with gold, beneath a gilt flowered cherry blossom tree, on a mokko form iron plate ground.

It has excellent hand applied Nanako Ji: "fish roe ground" A surface decoration produced by forming very small raised bosses by a sharply struck punch or burin called 'nanako tagane'. Shakudo is the metal most often used, but copper and gold are quite often employed. The harder metals, shibuichi, silver and iron are rarely decorated in this way. The size of the dots vary from 0.04" to 0.008" (25 to 125 and inch) and the regularity of the work is marvelous as the dots must be spaced entirely by touch. The dots are usually arranged in straight lines or in lines parallel to the edge of the piece being decorated, but sometimes in more elaborate patterns. Used on guards since the Momoyama period although the technique existed since much earlier periods. Usually done by specialist 'nanako-shi', but sometimes done by the maker of the guard himself.
The tsuba also bears a gilt pony, and there are a pair of shakudo menuki underneath the Edo silk tsuka-ito wrap. The gold horse or pony has an ancient place in Japanese culture, the Ainus of Japan are the first indigenous Japanese, believed a belief in a world with three levels, and that one may travel from one world to the next via the golden horse. It may be from the following story that the significant place of ponies in Japanese culture and status began. The Ainus tale 'The Man who lost his Wife'. A man had lost his wife, and was searching for her everywhere, over hill and dale, forest and sea-shore. At last he came to a wide plain, on which stood an oak-tree. Going up to it he found it to be not so much an oak-tree as a house, in which dwelt a kind-looking old man. Said the old man: "'I am the god of the oak-tree. I know of your loss, and have seen your faithful search. Rest here awhile, and refresh yourself by eating and smoking. After that, if you hope to find your wife again, you must obey my orders, which are as follows: Take this golden horse, get on his back, fly up on him to the sky, and, when you get there, ride about the streets, constantly singing."

So the man mounted the horse, which was of pure gold. The saddle and all the trappings were of gold also. As soon as he was in the saddle, the horse flew up to the sky. There the man found a world like ours, but more beautiful. There was an immense city in it; and up and down the streets of that city, day after day, he rode, singing all the while. Every one in the sky stared at him, and all the people put their hands to their noses, saying: "How that creature from the lower world stinks!" At last the stench became so intolerable to them that the chief god of the sky came and told him that he should be made to find his wife if only he would go away. Thereupon the man flew back to earth on his golden horse. Alighting at the foot of the oak-tree, he said to the oak-god: "Here am I. I did as you bade me. But I did not find my wife." "Wait a moment," said the oak-god; "you do not know what a tumult has been caused by your visit to the sky, neither have I yet told you that it was a demon who stole your wife. This demon, looking up from hell below, was so much astonished to see and hear you riding up and down the streets of heaven singing, that his gaze is still fixed in that direction. I will profit hereby to go round quietly, while his attention is absorbed, and let your wife out of the box in which he keeps her shut up."

The oak-god did as he had promised. He brought back the woman, and handed over both her and the gold horse to the man, saying: "Do not use this horse to make any more journeys to the sky. Stay on earth, and breed from it." The couple obeyed his commands, and became very rich. The gold horse gave birth to two horses, and these two bred likewise, till at last horses filled all the land of the Ainos. The Ainu people are historically residents of parts of Hokkaido (the Northern island of Japan) the Kuril Islands, and Sakhalin. According to the government, there are currently 25,000 Ainu living in Japan, but other sources claim there are up to 200,000. The origin of the Ainu people and language is, for the most part, unknown. However, there have been many theories on the subject.

One theory suggests that the Ainu people are remnants of the Jomon-jin, or the hunter-gathers who inhabited Japan during the Jomon Period (14,500 BC ? 300 AD) and perhaps even before. Around the year 300 AD, another group of immigrants known as the Yayoi people made their way to the islands of Japan, introducing new agricultural techniques and technology and integrating with the Jomon people. It is believed that the Yayoi group may not have reached as far as the Northern island of Hokkaido, allowing the Jomon hunter-gatherer way of life to survive in that area.


Every single item from The Lanes Armoury is accompanied by our unique Certificate of Authenticity. Part of our continued dedication to maintain the standards forged by us over the past 100 years of trading  read more

Code: 21729

9450.00 GBP

A Rare Crimean War Issue, P1839 Tower of London Royal Naval Sea Service Pistol, In Spectacular, As issued Condition, With Original Finish, Blue and Stock Varnish. Positively and Profusely Stamped & Ordnance Marked, With Numerous Inspection Marks

A Rare Crimean War Issue, P1839 Tower of London Royal Naval Sea Service Pistol, In Spectacular, As issued Condition, With Original Finish, Blue and Stock Varnish. Positively and Profusely Stamped & Ordnance Marked, With Numerous Inspection Marks

VR Crown Tower lock with date, stock maker marked by the ordnance contractor Tipping and Lawden, and J.Jones. The new Pattern 1839 Sea Service Pistol, was a single shot percussion action sidearm with a captive ramrod, and was was adopted for use by the Royal Navy from 1839. This pistol was nearly identical to the Pattern 1839 British Naval Coast Guard Pistol, but with two significant exceptions. First, the calibre was reduced to 26-Bore (about .57 caliber) and secondly, the pistol was mounted with an additional conventional belt hook rather than just the butt swivel. One other change was the elimination of the bolted safety behind the cock.

The list below was of the ships of the Royal Navy, issued with this pistol for use in the Crimean war, alongside their launch dates.
Arrow-class gunvessel
HMS Agamemnon (1852)
HMS Ajax (1809)
HMS Amphion (1846)
HMS Arrogant (1848)
HMS Ardent (1841)
HMS Basilisk (1848)
HMS Beagle (1854)
HMS Belleisle (1819)
HMS Blenheim (1813)
HMS Boscawen (1844)
HMS Britannia (1820)
HMS Calcutta (1831)
HMS Cornwallis (1813)
HMS Cossack (1854)
HMS Cruizer (1852)
HMS Cumberland (1842)
HMS Cyclops (1839)
HMS Dauntless (1847)
HMS Driver (1840)
HMS Duke of Wellington (1852)
HMS Edinburgh (1811)
HMS Euryalus (1853)
HMS Eurydice (1843)
HMS Exmouth (1854)
HMS Gorgon (1837)
HMS Hornet (1854)
HMS Imperieuse (1852)
HMS James Watt
HMS La Hogue
HMS Leander (1848)
HMS London (1840)
HMS Majestic (1853)
HMS Merlin (1838)
HMS Miranda (1851)
HMS Monarch (1832)
HMS Neptune (1832)
HMS Nile (1839)
HMS Odin (1846)
HMS Orion (1854)
HMS Pique (1834)
HMS Prince Regent (1823)
HMS Princess Royal (1853)
HMS Queen (1839)
HMS Rodney (1833)
HMS Royal George (1827)
HMS Sans Pareil (1851)
HMS St Jean d'Acre
HMS Tartar (1854)
HMS Tiger (1849)
HMS Valorous (1851)
HMS Virago (1842)
HMS Vulture (1843)

The 1839 Sea Service pistols, and WD contract Colt Navy revolvers, were also used in service by the Navy and Marines in the Second Opium War in China.The Colt revolvers for use by the officers, and the sailors and Marines, the single shot sea service pistols.
The Second Opium War, which brought English Camp's Royal Marines to Guangzhou, started after the Chinese seized a suspected pirate ship that was registered as a British merchant vessel, and the murder by the Chinese of a French priest. In retaliation, Britain made an alliance with France began destroying Chinese forts and eventually gathered an international force that would include British, French, and American combatants. This war would last for four years and climaxed with the burning and looting of the Summer Palace in Beijing, shortly after the Royal Marines arrived at English Camp. The Americans joined as allied combatants in the war, but didn’t make a formal alliance with the Anglo French force.  read more

Code: 25230

1495.00 GBP

A Very Fine & Incredibly Impressive Napoleonic 1st Empire French Cuirassier's Sword. The Largest Cavalry Sword Ever Made, for The Tallest Soldiers of France, & Used At Waterloo

A Very Fine & Incredibly Impressive Napoleonic 1st Empire French Cuirassier's Sword. The Largest Cavalry Sword Ever Made, for The Tallest Soldiers of France, & Used At Waterloo

Superb and beautiful hilt, with very fine original leather bound grip, and a very fine double fullered blade with stunning bright patina. Steel combat scabbard without denting. French Napoleonic 'An 13' year 13 swords were manufactured from 1805 and discontinued in late 1815, whereupon it was superceded in general by the later hilt style of the 1816 model, although some of the surviving models, such as this beauty, continued in service.
Renown throughout the world of historic sword collectors as probably the biggest and most impressive cavalry sword ever designed. This would have seen service in the Elite Cuirassiers of Napoleon's great heavy cavalry regiments.

Napoleon hoped to compel Tsar Alexander I of Russia to cease trading with British merchants through proxies in an effort to pressure the United Kingdom to sue for peace. The official political aim of the campaign was to liberate Poland from the threat of Russia. Napoleon named the campaign the Second Polish War to curry favour with the Poles and provide a political pretence for his actions. The Grande Armee was a very large force, numbering nearly half a million men from several different nations. Through a series of long marches Napoleon pushed the army rapidly through Western Russia in an attempt to bring the Russian army to battle, winning a number of minor engagements and a major battle at Smolensk in August. Napoleon hoped the battle would mean an end of the march into Russia, but the Russian army slipped away from the engagement and continued to retreat into Russia, while leaving Smolensk to burn. Plans Napoleon had made to quarter at Smolensk were abandoned, and he pressed his army on after the Russians. The battles continued, but once the winter set in Napoleon's army was facing insurmountable odds that left it effectively shattered beyond repair. Napoleon fled, it is said, dressed as a woman, and the army left to it's sad and miserable fate. Only around 27,000 were able to return after a mere six months of the Russian campaign. The campaign was a turning point in the Napoleonic Wars. The reputation of Napoleon was severely shaken, and French hegemony in Europe was dramatically weakened. The Grande Armee, made up of French and allied invasion forces, was reduced to a fraction of its initial strength. These events triggered a major shift in European politics. France's ally Prussia, soon followed by Austria, broke their alliance with France and switched camps. This triggered the War of the Sixth Coalition. The Cuirassiers Heavy Cavalry Regiments used the largest men in France, recruited to serve in the greatest and noblest cavalry France has ever had. They fought with distinction at their last great conflict at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815, and most of the Cuirassiers swords in England very likely came from that field of conflict, after the battle, as trophies of war. However, this sword was one of the few that were allowed to remain in the elite cuirassier corps after Waterloo, serving King Louis XVIIIth both before Napoleon's 100 days, and after his crushing defeat by Wellington at Waterloo. In fact one can see it has been service together with its scabbard, as they are bearing the same serial numbers matching. Inspected on the blade by Lobstein and Bick, also back strap engraved Manufacture Imperial Klingenthal, January 1814. Hilt stamped with the serial number 614, as on the scabbard

Every warrior that has ever entered service for his country sought trophies. The Mycenae from a fallen Trojan, the Roman from a fallen Gaul, the GI from a fallen Japanese, the tradition stretches back thousands of years, and will continue as long as man serves his country in battle. In the 1st century AD the Roman Poet Decimus Iunius Iuvenalis Juvenal
wrote; "Man thirsts more for glory than virtue. The armour of an enemy, his broken helmet, the flag ripped from a conquered trireme, are treasures valued beyond all human riches. It is to obtain these tokens of glory that Generals, be they Roman, Greek or barbarian, brave a thousand perils
and endure a thousand exertions". A truly magnificent Napoleonic sword in superb condition for it's age.
The largest sword of it's kind that was ever made or used by the world's greatest cavalry regiments. The cuirassiers were the greatest of all France's cavalry, allowing only the strongest men of over 6 feet in height into it's ranks. The French Cuirassiers were at their very peak in 1815, and never again regained the wonder and glory that they truly deserved at that time. To face a regiment of, say, 600 charging steeds bearing down upon you mounted with armoured giants, brandishing the mightiest of swords that could pierce the strongest breast armour, much have been, quite simply, terrifying. The brass basket guard on this sword is first class, the grip is totally original leather and a great colour
only shows expected combat wear, the blade is double fullered and absolutely as crisp as one could hope for. Made in the Napoleonic Wars period.
Just a basic few of the battles this would have been used at such as
1814: La Rothiere, Rosnay, Champaubert, Vauchamps, Athies, La Fere-Champenoise and Paris
1815: Quatre-Bras and Waterloo. Apparently every remaining French elite cuirassier regiment fought at Waterloo for Napoleon, and there were no cuirassier reserve, and there were no cuirassier militia

The blade has wonderful steel bright colour, and the hilt has fabulous patina. Overall 45.5 inches long in its scabbard, the spear pointed blade is 37.6 inches long. Old original aged patina and regular usual surface staining to the scabbard steel.  read more

Code: 25231

2395.00 GBP

A Koto to Early Shinto Sengoku Period Samurai Wakizashi Circa 1520's to 1590'

A Koto to Early Shinto Sengoku Period Samurai Wakizashi Circa 1520's to 1590'

With a stunningly attractive blade with fine suguha hamon.
All original edo period fittings and black urushi lacquer saya. Beautiful Higo style fuchi kashira decorated with takebori ponies. O sukashi square section tsuba

The samurai were roughly the equivalent of feudal knights. Employed by the shogun or daimyo, they were members of hereditary warrior class that followed a strict "code" that defined their clothes, armour and behaviour on the battlefield. But unlike most medieval knights, samurai warriors could read and they were well versed in Japanese art, literature and poetry.
Samurai endured for almost 700 years, from 1185 to 1867. Samurai families were considered the elite. They made up only about six percent of the population and included daimyo and the loyal soldiers who fought under them. Samurai means one who serves."
The Sengoku period Sengoku Jidai, "Warring States period") is a period in Japanese history of near-constant civil war, social upheaval, and intrigue from 1467 to 1615.

The Sengoku period was initiated by the Onin War in 1467 which collapsed the feudal system of Japan under the Ashikaga Shogunate. Various samurai warlords and clans fought for control over Japan in the power vacuum, while the Ikkō-ikki emerged to fight against samurai rule. The arrival of Europeans in 1543 introduced the arquebus into Japanese warfare, and Japan ended its status as a tributary state of China in 1549. Oda Nobunaga dissolved the Ashikaga Shogunate in 1573 and launched a war of political unification by force, including the Ishiyama Hongan-ji War, until his death in the Honnō-ji Incident in 1582. Nobunaga's successor Toyotomi Hideyoshi completed his campaign to unify Japan and consolidated his rule with numerous influential reforms. Hideyoshi launched the Japanese invasions of Korea in 1592, but their eventual failure damaged his prestige before his death in 1598. Tokugawa Ieyasu displaced Hideyoshi's young son and successor Toyotomi Hideyori at the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600 and re-established the feudal system under the Tokugawa Shogunate. The Sengoku period ended when Toyotomi loyalists were defeated at the siege of Osaka in 1615.

The Sengoku period was named by Japanese historians after the similar but otherwise unrelated Warring States period of China.

Cherished for its infinite versatility, urushi lacquer is a distinctive art form that has spread across all facets of Japanese culture from the tea ceremony to the saya scabbards of samurai swords

Japanese artists created their own style and perfected the art of decorated lacquerware during the 8th century. Japanese lacquer skills reached its peak as early as the twelfth century, at the end of the Heian period (794-1185). This skill was passed on from father to son and from master to apprentice.

The varnish used in Japanese lacquer is made from the sap of the urushi tree, also known as the lacquer tree or the Japanese varnish tree (Rhus vernacifera), which mainly grows in Japan and China, as well as Southeast Asia. Japanese lacquer, 漆 urushi, is made from the sap of the lacquer tree. The tree must be tapped carefully, as in its raw form the liquid is poisonous to the touch, and even breathing in the fumes can be dangerous. But people in Japan have been working with this material for many millennia, so there has been time to refine the technique!  read more

Code: 24218

3895.00 GBP

A Stunning Late 15th Century Sengoku 'Warring States' period, Koto Wakizashi by MItsutada, Fine Higo Mounts With Demon 'Oni' Decor

A Stunning Late 15th Century Sengoku 'Warring States' period, Koto Wakizashi by MItsutada, Fine Higo Mounts With Demon 'Oni' Decor

Spectacular blade, in original Edo polish and with amazingly active and vibrant hamon, with just a few old surface marks. around 550 years old. This is another sword from our recent collection acquired, also untouched for almost 200 years.
It is original edo period mounted han dachi semi tachi form with Higo style iron mounts of fine quality, featuring oni demons masks on the saya and full demons as menuki, the saya is covered in coloured polished fine grain Kairagi same-gawa rayskin. "Kairagi" means "Ume Blossom Skin".
When you polish the skin, Ume Blossom patterns will appear. Kairagi-same is very rare.
The sword was being worn more and more edge up when on foot, but edge down on horseback as it had always been. The handachi is a response to the need to be worn in either style. The samurai were roughly the equivalent of feudal knights. Employed by the shogun or daimyo, they were members of hereditary warrior class that followed a strict "code" that defined their clothes, armour and behaviour on the battlefield. But unlike most medieval knights, samurai warriors could read and they were well versed in Japanese art, literature and poetry.
Samurai endured for almost 700 years, from 1185 to 1867. Samurai families were considered the elite. They made up only about six percent of the population and included daimyo and the loyal soldiers who fought under them. Samurai means one who serves."
The Sengoku period Sengoku Jidai, "Warring States period") is a period in Japanese history of near-constant civil war, social upheaval, and intrigue from 1467 to 1615.

The Sengoku period was initiated by the Onin War in 1467 which collapsed the feudal system of Japan under the Ashikaga Shogunate. Various samurai warlords and clans fought for control over Japan in the power vacuum, while the Ikkō-ikki emerged to fight against samurai rule. The arrival of Europeans in 1543 introduced the arquebus into Japanese warfare, and Japan ended its status as a tributary state of China in 1549. Oda Nobunaga dissolved the Ashikaga Shogunate in 1573 and launched a war of political unification by force, including the Ishiyama Hongan-ji War, until his death in the Honnō-ji Incident in 1582. Nobunaga's successor Toyotomi Hideyoshi completed his campaign to unify Japan and consolidated his rule with numerous influential reforms. Hideyoshi launched the Japanese invasions of Korea in 1592, but their eventual failure damaged his prestige before his death in 1598. Tokugawa Ieyasu displaced Hideyoshi's young son and successor Toyotomi Hideyori at the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600 and re-established the feudal system under the Tokugawa Shogunate. The Sengoku period ended when Toyotomi loyalists were defeated at the siege of Osaka in 1615.

The Sengoku period was named by Japanese historians after the similar but otherwise unrelated Warring States period of China  read more

Code: 23960

SOLD

A Superb & Most Rare 'New York City' Manufactured 1851 Colt Navy Revolver, British Royal Naval Contract Pistol For The British War Department's Supply of Arms For The Crimean War in Russia. In Stunning Condition, & A Rare Beauty.

A Superb & Most Rare 'New York City' Manufactured 1851 Colt Navy Revolver, British Royal Naval Contract Pistol For The British War Department's Supply of Arms For The Crimean War in Russia. In Stunning Condition, & A Rare Beauty.

With matching serial numbers, for 1853, and very good patinated colour and finish overall, with clear and crisp stampings, and good tight action. A truly super and most rarely surviving, original, US manufactured, 1851 Colt Navy ‘British War Department Contract’ marked and stamped pistol. With fine roll engraved cylinder depicting the sailing ship sea battle. Nicely coloured varnished grips.
With the advent of the Crimean War and the sudden need for handguns in the field, the British Ordnance Department placed orders for a total of 23,700 Colt’s “Navy” pistols. The .36 calibre revolver was a departure from British military handgun doctrine in many ways, as it was both a smaller calibre (.36) when compared to the traditional British military pistols that were typically between .58 and .65 calibre, and it was a multi-shot weapon. The general acceptance of modern repeating handguns was still very much up in the air with the British military at that time, but they proceeded with the order anyway. These revolvers were delivered between March of 1854 and February of 1856. While most of these guns were delivered from Colt’s London production facility, additional revolvers were delivered, out of urgency, from his US based Hartford {New York} manufactory as well. Of all the revolvers supplied, 9,600 were issued to the Royal Navy, and 5,000 were issued to the army in the Crimea, such as to the ‘Guards’ regiment officers.

The majority of the British purchased military guns were standard London production Colt Model 1851 Revolvers. These guns featured iron backstraps, large iron rounded triggerguards, the standard Colt London address, small “severe” London style serial numbers, rounded head frame screws and “Slim Jim” grips. Some American-made revolvers were delivered to complete the order, with the usual brass backstraps and triggerguards. This example is one of those few very rare American made examples.
Eventually nearly all of the British military acquired Colt Navy revolvers were marked with the usual London Address, the London proof marks, as well as the government ownership mark of a small {Broad Arrow} and WD (War Department) mark. However, as to the acquisition of the few American manufactured revolvers, and the speed with which the revolvers were issued, some of the American revolvers went into the field during the Crimean War without the added British proof markings {just as this one doesn't possess} but, with just the War Department WD and Broad Arrow, just as this revolver does indeed have.

Period accounts indicate that the Royal Navy found the revolvers very popular and useful, particularly for boarding parties. In fact, after the conclusion of the Crimean conflict, the Royal Navy continued to utilize the Colt revolvers {alongside the 1839 Pattern Sea Service Single Shot Pistol} in Chinese waters during the Second Opium War that broke out in the fall of 1856. Such as aboard HMS Tribune, which brought the Royal Marines to English Camp, and was a participant in the battle of Guangzhou, during which it had successfully destroyed a fleet of Chinese warships in the Pearl River Delta. Members of the Royal Marines had seen combat across China during the Second Opium War, including fighting in sieges of Chinese forts and naval battles also using the WD Colt revolvers.

The Second Opium War, which brought English Camp's Royal Marines to Guangzhou, started after the Chinese seized a suspected pirate ship that was registered as a British merchant vessel. In retaliation, Britain began destroying Chinese forts and eventually gathered an international force that would include British, French, and American combatants. This war would last for four years and climaxed with the burning and looting of the Summer Palace in Beijing, shortly after the Royal Marines arrived at English Camp.

Interestingly, Colt’s 1851 Navy revolver, their 1860 Army Model and the 1861 Navy Model, all sport cylinder scenes of a naval conflict. If you look closely at the cylinders, you’ll find the legend “Engaged 16 May 1843,” along with the flags of the young Texas Republic and the early Mexican colours flying from the ships’ masts. This date, along with the nautical imagery, represents a seaborne battle in which Texas’s Commodore Edwin Ward Moore defeated a superior (in both number of ships and their size) fleet of Mexican warships—a crucial event in Texas’s struggle for independence. This naval scene was another shrewd move on the part of Colonel Sam Colt, since he was purposely catering to the Texas market that had been so prosperous for him in the past.

The Crimean War was the first major European conflict since Samuel Colt’s revolvers took the world by storm at the Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations in 1851, the first World’s Fair. Colt debuted his new revolvers in a large display at the fair, including the Model 1851 Navy which was known originally as Colt’s Belt Model. This was to be Colt’s most significant revolver on the international market.

The Observer of London on November 23, 1851, under the heading “Colt’s Revolvers” noted, “No weapon has attracted more attention than the American revolvers of which several specimens were exhibited during the recent Exhibition…” They stated that U.S. Ordnance tests that showed the ‘51 Navy could be fired 1,500 times a day with only one cleaning. It also reported that they had been used in the Mexican-American War, referencing Colt’s earlier Paterson revolvers, and that the British government had approved the Colt for officers in Africa and India and that this sanctioning had, “not only served to clear the shelves and counters of the American department of the Exhibition, but has been the means of obtaining a large number of orders to be executed for persons in this country.”

Other historic 1851 Navy Colt revolvers used by figures involved in the Crimean War, include Emperor Napoleon III, and a cased pair owned by Lord Cardigan, British Commander of the Light Brigade,

A photo in the gallery of HMS Warrior, and Iron-Clad warship, with the rack of WD 1851 Navy Colts aboard.
HMS Warrior is a 40-gun steam-powered armoured frigate built for the Royal Navy in 1859–1861. She was the name ship of the Warrior-class ironclads. Warrior and her sister ship HMS Black Prince were the first armour-plated, iron-hulled warships, and were built in response to France's launching in 1859 of the first ocean-going ironclad warship, the wooden-hulled Gloire. She is now in HM Dockyards  read more

Code: 25229

4425.00 GBP

Very Fine Regimental Officer's Sword WW1 of the 5th Prussian Jäger Battalion (1st Silesian). Imperial Prussian Eagle Guard With Crest of Kaiser Willhelm IInd. Commanded By Crown Prince Wilhelm of Prussia the Heir of Kaiser Wilhelm IInd. Sword No 1

Very Fine Regimental Officer's Sword WW1 of the 5th Prussian Jäger Battalion (1st Silesian). Imperial Prussian Eagle Guard With Crest of Kaiser Willhelm IInd. Commanded By Crown Prince Wilhelm of Prussia the Heir of Kaiser Wilhelm IInd. Sword No 1

Stamped on the guard for the first officer of the 5th Jäger Battalion, the 1st Company, Sword Number 1. Stamped on the hilt, 5.J.1.1, in it it’s matching numbered scabbard. Used in the 1914 Schlieffen Plan, the Battle of the Ardennes, and the Battle of Verdun and Marne. Overall the sword is in excellent condition, with its original multi wire bound sharkskin grip fully original and intact. Bronze guard, with the personal monogram of the Kaiser upon the grip, and guard depicting the Imperial Prussian Eagle, pieced and in relief. Double fullered blade and it’s original all steel combat scabbard. The blade bears the Kaiser Wilhelmi W Crown proof inspection mark
The 5th Prussian Jäger Battalion (1st Silesian)
AKA The Jäger-Batallion von Neumann (1.Schlesisches ) Nr.5 was formed in 1808 as the 1. Schützen-Abteilung (Schlesische). They fought Napoleon at the Battles of Leipzig and Waterloo, Revolutionaries in Baden in 1849, Austria- Hungary at Königgrätz in 1866 and France again at Wörth and Sedan in 1870. Since 1901 Archduke Ferdinand Carl of Austria-Hungary was honorary Colonel in Chief of the battalion.

In 1914 they were garrisoned at Hirschberg (modern Jelenia Góra, Poland) and formed part of the V Army Corps. During the First World War they served on the Western Front, notably at the Battles of the Marne and Verdun.

On mobilisation, V Corps was assigned to the 5th Army forming part of centre of the forces for the Schlieffen Plan offensive in August 1914 on the Western Front.

In August 1914 the command of 5th Army was assigned to Crown Prince Wilhelm of Germany, heir to the Hohenzollern throne, with General Schmidt von Knobelsdorf serving as his chief of staff, and would remain thus until late 1916. The opening hostilities on the Western Front saw the Crown Prince's 5th Army, along with the neighboring 4th Army (commanded by Albrecht, Duke of Württemberg), acting at the center of the Schlieffen plan attack into Belgium and France. On 21 August 1914, in what became known as the Battle of the Ardennes, the 4th and 5th Armies advanced into the Ardennes to counter a thrust by the French 3rd and 4th Armies. Over the next two days 5th Army played a major part in halting the opposing French forces. By 23 August, after taking heavy losses and being outmaneuvered strategically, the two French armies were driven into retreat. Following the German 5th Army's victory in the Battle of the Ardennes it moved to Verdun, where it would remain until 1918. In February 1916 the Crown Prince's 5th Army would launch Operation Gericht, the German offensive that began the Battle of Verdun, one of the bloodiest and longest battles in history. Late in 1916, after suffering terrible losses in its efforts at Verdun, General Max von Gallwitz assumed control of 5th Army. Before the close of the war 5th Army fought in several noteworthy actions, including the Battle of Saint-Mihiel, in September 1918, when it was defeated by the American Expeditionary Force under John J. Pershing. The Fifth Army continued to oppose the AEF's Meuse-Argonne Offensive until the Armistice of 11 November 1918. At the end of the war it was serving as part of Heeresgruppe Gallwitz

It was still in existence at the end of the war in Armee-Abteilung C, Heeresgruppe Gallwitz on the Western Front.

Wilhelm, German Crown Prince, Crown Prince of Prussia (Friedrich Wilhelm Victor August Ernst; 6 May 1882 – 20 July 1951) was the eldest child of the last Kaiser, Wilhelm II, German Emperor, and his consort Augusta Victoria of Schleswig-Holstein, and thus a great-grandson of Queen Victoria, and distant cousin to many British royals, such as Queen Elizabeth II. As Emperor Wilhelm's heir, he was the last Crown Prince of the German Empire and the Kingdom of Prussia, until the abolition of the monarchy.

Wilhelm became crown prince at the age of six in 1888, when his grandfather Frederick III died and his father became emperor. He was crown prince for 30 years until the fall of the empire on 9 November 1918. During World War I, he commanded the 5th Army from 1914 to 1916 and was commander of the Army Group German Crown Prince for the remainder of the war. After his return to Germany in 1923, he fought the Weimar Republic and campaigned for the reintroduction of the monarchy in Germany. After his plans to become president had been blocked by his father, Wilhelm supported Adolf Hitler's rise to power, but when Wilhelm realised that Hitler had no intention of restoring the monarchy, their relationship cooled. Wilhelm became head of the House of Hohenzollern on 4 June 1941 following the death of his father and held the position until his own death on 20 July 1951.

Small denting to the scabbard.  read more

Code: 25235

995.00 GBP

An Early 'Special Boat Service' Royal Navy Special Forces Frogman's Bracelet Compass With Original Strap. Excellent Condition Leather, Fully Working Compass. Can Be Operational With a Lanyard Mount

An Early 'Special Boat Service' Royal Navy Special Forces Frogman's Bracelet Compass With Original Strap. Excellent Condition Leather, Fully Working Compass. Can Be Operational With a Lanyard Mount

Brass pressure sealed case, with with screw fitted filling or release aperture, original long leather strap in excellent condition with original buckle. In good working order.

The pattern 261. No. 1241B. Divers Compass. Stamped upon the face seal ring.

The Special Boat Service (SBS) is the special forces unit of the United Kingdom's Royal Navy. The SBS can trace its origins back to the Second World War when the Army Special Boat Section was formed in 1940. After the Second World War, the Royal Navy formed special forces with several name changes—Special Boat Company was adopted in 1951 and re-designated as the Special Boat Squadron in 1974—until on 28 July 1987 when the unit was renamed as the Special Boat Service after assuming responsibility for maritime counter-terrorism. Most of the operations conducted by the SBS are highly classified, and are rarely commented on by the British government or the Ministry of Defence, owing to their sensitive nature.

The Special Boat Service is the maritime special forces unit of the United Kingdom Special Forces and is described as the sister unit of the British Army 22 Special Air Service Regiment (22 SAS), with both under the operational control of the Director Special Forces. In October 2001, full command of the SBS was transferred from the Commandant General Royal Marines to the Commander-in-Chief Fleet.6 On 18 November 2003, the SBS were given their own cap badge with the motto "By Strength and Guile". SBS operators are mostly recruited from the Royal Marines Commandos.

Origin: Second World War
Roger Courtney became a commando in mid-1940 and was sent to the Combined Training Centre at Achnacarry in Scotland. He was unsuccessful in his initial attempts to convince Admiral of the Fleet Sir Roger Keyes and later Admiral Theodore Hallett, commander of the Combined Training Centre, that his idea of a folding kayak brigade would be effective. He decided to infiltrate HMS Glengyle, an infantry landing ship anchored in the River Clyde. Courtney paddled to the ship, climbed aboard undetected, wrote his initials on the door to the captain's cabin, and stole a deck gun cover. He presented the soaking cover to a group of high-ranking Royal Navy officers meeting at a nearby Inveraray hotel. He was promoted to captain and given command of twelve men as the first Special Boat Service/Special Boat Section.

The unit, on the shores of Sannox, Isle of Arran, was initially named the Folboat Troop, after the type of folding canoe employed in raiding operations and then renamed No. 1 Special Boat Section in early 1941. One training exercise required SBS members to navigate folboats 140 miles (230 km) over 3 days and 3 nights from Ardrossan to Clachan, via the Isle of Kerrera, where they reconnoitred and sketched RAF Oban. Attached to Layforce, it moved to the Middle East. The unit worked with the 1st Submarine Flotilla based at Alexandria and did beach reconnaissance of Rhodes, evacuated troops left behind on Crete, and carried out a number of small-scale raids and other operations. In December 1941 Courtney returned to the United Kingdom where he formed No2 SBS, and No1 SBS became attached to the Special Air Service (SAS) as the Folboat Section. In June 1942 they took part in the Crete airfield raids. In September 1942 eight men of the SBS carried out Operation Anglo, a raid on two airfields on the island of Rhodes; all but two of the men were captured after carrying out their mission. Destroying three aircraft, a fuel dump and numerous buildings, the two uncaptured SBS men had to hide in the countryside for four days before they could reach the waiting submarine. After the Rhodes raid, the SBS was absorbed into the SAS due to the heavy casualties they had suffered.

The Royal Marines Boom Patrol Detachment (RMBPD) was formed on 6 July 1942, and based at Southsea, Portsmouth. The RMBPD was under the command of Royal Marines Major Herbert 'Blondie' Hasler with Captain J. D. Stewart as second in command.The detachment consisted of 34 men and was based at Lumps Fort, and often exercised in the Portsmouth Harbour and patrolled the harbour boom at nights.

1st SAS was divided, with 250 men from the SAS joining the Small Scale Raiding Force to form the Special Boat Squadron under the command of Major the Earl Jellicoe. They moved to Haifa and trained with the Greek Sacred Regiment for operations in the Aegean.

They later operated among the Dodecanese and Cyclades groups of islands in the Dodecanese Campaign and took part in the Battle of Leros and the Battle of Kos. They, with the Greek Sacred Band, took part in the successful Raid on Symi in July 1944 in which the entire German garrison was either killed or captured. In August 1944 they joined with the Long Range Desert Group in operations in the Adriatic, on the Peloponnese, in Albania, and, finally, in Istria. So effective were they that, by 1944, the 200–300 men of the SBS were holding down six German divisions.

Throughout the war, No.2 SBS did not use the Special Boat Squadron name but instead retained the name Special Boat Section. They accompanied US Major General Mark Clark ashore before the Operation Torch landings in October 1942 on Operation Flagpole. Later, one group, Z SBS, which was based in Algiers from March 1943, carried out the beach reconnaissance for the Salerno landings and a raid on Crete, before moving to Ceylon to work with the Special Operations Executives, Force 136 and later with Special Operations Australia. The rest of No. 2 SBS became part of South-East Asia Command's Small Operations Group, operating on the Chindwin and Irrawaddy rivers, and in the Arakan, during the Burma campaign.23

Although their roles always overlapped to some extent, the various canoe and boat units became more specialised from late 1942 onwards. The RMBPD focused on ship attack and harbour sabotage, the Special Boat Section and COPP undertook covert beach surveys, and the Special Boat Squadron engaged in raiding, sabotage and reconnaissance above the high-water mark.

Picture in the gallery of the printed details on the RN service guide for its use, and storage of compass when not in use.

A few years ago we were privileged to have acquired the service sword of a WW2 SBS D.Day hero, and his ancestral; sword of his ancestor, the great ‘Nicolson of Delhi’ hero of the Raj in the 19th century, one of the few men to still have his much revered statue still standing in India.  read more

Code: 25234

395.00 GBP