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An Imperial German Iron Cross and Eagle Desk Ornament

In blackened finish lead.The Iron Cross is a black four-pointed cross with white trim, with the arms widening toward the ends, similar to a cross pattee. It was designed by the neoclassical architect Karl Friedrich Schinkel and reflects the cross borne by the Teutonic Knights in the 14th century. Since the Iron Cross was issued over several different periods of German history, it was annotated with the year indicating the era in which it was issued. For example, an Iron Cross from the First World War bears the year "1914", while the same decoration from the Second World War is annotated "1939". The reverse of the 1870, 1914 and 1939 series of Iron Crosses have the year "1813" appearing on the lower arm, symbolising the year the award was created. The 1813 decoration also has the initials "FW" for King Frederick William III, while the next two have a "W" for the respective kaisers, Wilhelm I and Wilhelm II. The final version shows a swastika 5.5 inches high. 1.4 kilos

Code: 23269

85.00 GBP

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Japanese WW2, Silk, Imperial Flag. Souvenir of WW2 War Veteran

In good condition overall with a few light holes. Excellent light as a feather silk. The scarcer allied soldiers souvenir flag from the Pacific War campaign. The is the simple orange disc circle on a plain white ground. Since ancient times, the sun has been a symbol of national unity because of the close relationship between national rule and the sun. When Taira was destroyed and the samurai government was established by Genji, successive shoguns claimed to be descendants of Genji, and it was said that the Hinomaru of "Shirachikamaru" , [ red circle on white background] had been inherited as a symbol of those who achieved the unification of the country. In Japan, "red and white" has been regarded as a joyous colour scheme

Code: 23264

175.00 GBP

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A Good Rare Ottoman Army Cavalry Officers Sword Made in Constantinople

Traditional 'P' hilt of regulation Turkish form, langet engraved with the Turkish crescent and star. Deluxe quality fully etched pipe backed blade bearing further star and crescents, florid scrolls stands of arms and etc. Makers name on the blade spine. Photo in the gallery of two Ottoman Turkish Camel Cavalry officers seated, drinking coffee, with their swords at hand. Also photographs of Ottoman General Staff officers. Recently original weapons of the late Ottoman Empire have become very much sought after by Turkish collectors seeking elements of the old Ottoman period. The Germanic style of the sword hilt falls into place in the latter part of the Ottoman Empire with it's alliance with the Kaiser. Beginning in the 1880s, the Ottoman Empire entered into diplomatic relationships, and later military alliance, with Imperial Germany. The Turks wanted to modernize their ramshackle, obsolescent army and build up their navy. The Germans wanted, among other things, a rail link between themselves and the Levant, for strategic and economic reasons.
The equipment of the Turkish Army became Germanized. In 1887, the Ottomans adopted the first of four models of Mauser repeating rifles (total number of variations was seven including carbines) to replace the British and American-made single shots previously used. During this period, regulation swords on the German style were adopted, and the kilij became a thing of the past except in irregular militia formations. The same pattern could be seen in the Ottomans' choice of artillery, saddlery and harness, ships, and even band instruments.

German officers, such as Limon von Sanders, went to Istanbul to supervise the re-training of the Turkish officer corps. The effort was not entirely successful, due to cultural inertia, and personality clashes between the two peoples. When war between Turkey and Bulgaria broke out in 1911-12, the Ottoman forces took a terrible drubbing from the Russian-backed Bulgarians. During World War I, the Ottomans made the ill-advised decision to ally with Germany, and suffered the consequences of ending up on the losing side. By the early 1920's, the Ottoman Empire, the "Devlet Aliyeh" or Exalted Dynasty, was no more. No scabbard

Code: 23260

475.00 GBP

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Japanese WW2 Signed Shingunto Officer's Katana

A superb condition sword, signed blade [possibly Nobuhide], just returned from being professionally 'artisan' cleaned, [but importantly not restored]. So it now looks just as it was when it was captured in WW2 by a British officer in 1945. Just a little discolouration to one side of the kabutogane. You might never be able to find a better condition original regulation Shingunto Japanese officer's sword from WW2. Surrendered in Burma to an officer in the South Wales Borderers. We had his sergeant's Japanese surrendered sword last month. The 6th Battalion, South Wales Borders served in the Burma Campaign with the 72nd Infantry Brigade, 36th British Infantry Division, previously a division of the British Indian Army before being re-designated the 36th British Division. The division was initially in reserve for the Second Arakan campaign in early 1944, but was called on to relieve the besieged 7th Indian infantry Division after early setbacks. After the Japanese were defeated at the Battle of Ngakyedauk, 7th Division was withdrawn and 36th Division took over the offensive in the Kalapanzin River Valley. Units of the division captured the vital eastern railway tunnel linking the Kalapanzin valley with the port of Maungdaw.

The division withdrew for a brief rest at Shillong in Assam, and was then despatched to Ledo, where it came under command of the American-led Northern Combat Area Command.
Early in July 1944, the division started to fly into Myitkyina airfield in North Burma, with 72nd Brigade being the first formation to land. On 1 September 1944, shortly after the division had started advancing down the "Railway valley" from Mogaung towards Indaw on the right flank of NCAC, the division was renamed the British 36th Division. On 14 December, a third brigade was added to the division; confusingly, this was the first Indian formation that the division commanded (the 26th Indian Infantry Brigade, of one British and two Indian battalions).

The division was distinguished for being the only British division to rely entirely on air supply, mainly by the United States' Tenth Air Force, for an extended period. The United States Army Air Force also provided the division with 12 light aircraft equipped for casualty evacuation and a US Army engineer company to construct its airstrips. Initially, the division was without its own divisional artillery and instead relied on a Chinese artillery group under US command.
The division, having linked up with the main body of Lieutenant General William "Bill" Slim's British Fourteenth Army, crossed the Irrawaddy River and advanced independently down the eastern side of the river. Units from the division suffered losses forcing the crossing the 300 yard wide Shweli River, but the division continued to advance until the fall of Mandalay in March 1945.

Code: 23259

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A Most Fine and Huge Bore 1840's Spring Bayonet Ship's Captain's Pistol

Made by Bentley of Liverpool, an overcoat man-stopper stiletto-pistol of carbine bore. Turn-off barrel breech loader. Micro chequered grip, octagonal Damascus twist steel barrel, catch release spring loaded stiletto shaped bayonet. Nice tight and crisp sidelock percussion action. This is a pistol intended for use by an officer and gentleman who seriously meant business in his choice of arm, for both defence and offence. It was the combination of accuracy, speed and durability that made the turn-off breech loading pistol such a favourite. Pirates and highwaymen were especially noted for the large number of guns that filled their pockets, hung from their belts, or were tied to ribbons. There was no time for re-loading once a ship had been boarded or a fight had begun, and it was therefore a good idea to have several shots available. Even the notorious Captain Jack Sparrow carried a Queen Anne pistol! At the end of the movie Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, the character of Jack Sparrow hands a turn-off pistol to Angelica, saying “One pistol. One shot.”

In 1807, Reverend Alexander Forsyth invented the percussion system which rapidly eclipsed the flintlock. One of the great virtues of the percussion design was that pistols could be manufactured to any size, even very small pieces were easily stowed in a pocket. As the century progressed, the larger and longer-barrelled guns became more and more refined until they were the most popular designs of pocket pistol. Some very small types were known as “muff pistols”,as they were made especially for ladies, to conceal in their hand-muffs, from which the gun could easily be drawn to stop any villain in his tracks.

The caplock system was also much simpler than the flintlock mechanism, with fewer parts, making the overall contour smoother and less likely to catch and tear a pocket or leave the owner struggling to free the gun while his target gets away. Gunmakers all over the world jumped at the opportunity to meet the supply for the ever-growing demand, however the versiona made with spring loaded bayonets such as this were less than one in a thousand.

Code: 23257

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A Most Fine Museum Worthy Ancient Koto Era Handachi Tachi Made Around 1450

A stunning, ancient Koto sword, formerly part of the esteemed Ron Gregory Collection [world renown Japanese Sword Reference Book Author]. Complete and untouched, with all its original Edo period koshirae [mountings] including a most rare tsukaito [hilt binding] of silk interwoven with brass wire in a herringbone pattern, [a remarkably complex and skillfull achievement]. The o-suriage blade is in original polish and looks singularly fine and beautiful. The Higo style koshirae are all a fully matching inlaid with silver curlicues of Arabesques on an iron ground. This is a simply remarkable early tachi, and an absolute joy to hold, admire and indeed own. We have a complete summary of its details that was undertaken some years ago, . The aged tsukaito is surface worn in areas but its beauty and rarity is exceptional. A blade of most impressive, elegant and deep curvature, typical of the early samurai sword of the Nambokochu to Muromachi era [1333 to 1573]. As is often with ancient swords the story of it's use starts in the era before it was actually made, by it's master smith.The Nanbokochu era was spanning from 1336 to 1392, it was a period that occurred during the formative years of the Muromachi bakufu of Japan's history.
The Imperial seats during the Nanboku-cho period were in relatively close proximity, but
geographically distinct. They were conventionally identified as:
Northern capital : Kyoto
Southern capital : Yoshino.
During this period, there existed a Northern Imperial Court, established by Ashikaga Takauji in Kyoto, and a Southern Imperial Court, established by Emperor Go-Daigo in Yoshino.
Ideologically, the two courts fought for fifty years, with the South giving up to the North in 1392.
However, in reality the Northern line was under the power of the Ashikaga shoguns and had little real independence. This sword would very likely have been made before and used in the Onin War (1467-1477) which led to serious political fragmentation and obliteration of domains: a great struggle for land and power ensued among bushi chieftains and lasted until the mid-sixteenth century. Peasants rose against their landlords and samurai against their overlords, as central control virtually disappeared. An early Japanese print in the gallery shows a samurai receiving his reward of a fine tachi [such as this one] from his shugo daimyo lord. The shugo daimyo were the first group of men to hold the title "daimyo". They arose from among the shugo during the Muromachi period. The shugo daimyo held not only military and police powers, but also economic power within a province. They accumulated these powers throughout the first decades of the Muromachi period.
Major shugo daimyo came from the Shiba, Hatakeyama, and Hosokawa clans, as well as the tozama clans of Yamana, Ouchi, and Akamatsu. The greatest ruled multiple provinces.

The Ashikaga shogunate required the shugo daimyo to reside in Kyoto, so they appointed relatives or retainers, called shugodai, to represent them in their home provinces. Eventually some of these in turn came to reside in Kyoto, appointing deputies in the provinces.

The Onin War was a major uprising in which shugo daimyo fought each other. During this and other wars of the time, kuni ikki, or provincial uprisings, took place as locally powerful warriors sought independence from the shugo daimyo. The deputies of the shugo daimyo, living in the provinces, seized the opportunity to strengthen their position. At the end of the fifteenth century, those shugo daimyo who succeeded remained in power. Those who had failed to exert control over their deputies fell from power and were replaced by a new class, the "sengoku daimyo", who arose from the ranks of the shugodai'K and Ji-samurai

Code: 23254

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A Good Silver 1854 Crimean War Medal

For a driver in the Land Transport Corps Driver Perch. The Crimean War (1853-1856) stemmed from Russia’s threat to multiple European interests with its pressure of Turkey. After demanding Russian evacuation of the Danubian Principalities, British and French forces laid siege to the city of Sevastopol in 1854. The campaign lasted for a full year, with the Battle of Balaclava and its “Charge of the Light Brigade” among its famous skirmishes. Facing mounting losses and increased resistance from Austria, Russia agreed to the terms of the 1856 Treaty of Paris. Remembered in part for Florence Nightingale’s work for the wounded, the Crimean War reshaped Europe’s power structure. The problems facing the logistic support to operations in the Crimean Peninsula took much longer to put right however, as "there could be no systematic and organised rectification of what was wrong until the Commissariat was properly staffed and what became known as the Land Transport Corps was formed and sent out." (Macksey, 1989, p. 12) For one thing, bureaucratic rules and inter-agency rivalry hindered the Commissariat and Land Transport Corps from cooperating efficiently. Staffing remained a problem as many of the personnel drafted in were rarely expert, energetic, competent or even trained. However, the situation was rescued by another individual, Colonel William McMurdo, who arranged for agencies to be opened throughout the Middle East in order to purchase mules, and after sufficient officers had arrived, McMurdo took command of the Commissariat transport and absorbed the Hospital Conveyance Corps. The Corps also supervised the clearing of the port of Balaclava and construction of a light railway to the frontlines, with the help of both civilian contractors and military engineers. This pointed to the development of military engineering as an important logistics service with the engineers also taking responsibility for running the 340-mile cable link installed in early 1855 by the English Electric Telegraph Company between Balaclava and the siege lines at Sebastopol. By the end of the war, the final capacity of the Land Transport Corps was three days rations for the 58,000 troops and 30,000 horses, 200 rounds of ammunition per man for 36,000 men and 2,500 men in ambulances. It is a tribute to those individuals who struggled to overturn the decay of the past that the British Army (after a terrible winter) was able to resume offensive operations in in mid-1855 and with French help, eventually capture Sebastopol in September, with an armistice being signed in February 1856. By that time, the logistic system supporting British forces in the Black Sea theatre had surpassed that of the French. (Macksey, 1989; Sutton, 1998) British forces were well fed, had adequate shelter and plenty of clothing – no-one could have taken

The Crimean War was a result of Russian pressure on Turkey; this threatened British commercial and strategic interests in the Middle East and India. France, having provoked the crisis for prestige purposes, used the war to cement an alliance with Britain and to reassert its military power.

Anglo-French forces secured Istanbul before attacking Russia in the Black Sea, the Baltic, the Arctic, and the Pacific, supported by a maritime blockade. In September 1854 the allies landed in the Crimea, planning to destroy Sevastopol and the Russian Fleet in six weeks before withdrawing to Turkey. After victory on the River Alma, they hesitated; the Russians then reinforced the city and attacked the allied flank at the battles of Balaklava and the Inkerman. After a terrible winter, the allies cut Russian logistics by occupying the Sea of Azov; then, using superior sea-based logistics, they forced the Russians out of Sevastopol, which fell on September 8–9, 1855

Code: 23248

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A Very Good 1889 Pattern British Army Staff Sergeants Sword for 'The Buffs'

This rarely encountered 1889 pattern infantry Staff Sergeant’s sword was made in February 1896 by Robert Mole .

The straight, single-edged blade has a wide three-quarter length fuller on each side below a thick, flat spine and terminates in a spear point. The spine is thick at the shoulder. These P1889 swords are robust fighting swords and were the primary weapon of infantry Staff Sergeants. The etched panel blade is double-edged for the last 250mm and is in excellent condition.

The forte of the blade is stamped with the War Department WD and arrow, a Mole inspection stamp and a bend test stamp.

The gothic steel hilt is in excellent condition and very robust. The hilt bears Queen Victoria’s royal cypher. The quillon is marked to the East Kent regiment 'The Buffs' with the date, May 1896 The shagreen grip and twisted wire are in great condition and the blade is firm in the hilt.

The sword is complete with its matching steel scabbard with two fixed suspension rings. The scabbard throat bears the regimental stamp as well. The side of the throat bears a date and WD and arrow stamps. Lower down, between the suspension rings the edge of the scabbard is stamped with the WD and arrow of the War Department and an inspection stamp. The scabbard is in very good condition there is mild surface finish loss and speckling on both sides The sword sheathes and draws smoothly and is held firmly within the scabbard.
This is an excellent and regimentaly marked to the East Kent Regiment [The Buffs] example of a rare Victorian, Boer War period Staff Sergeant’s sword. These are not often seen. The Buffs saw action during the Second Boer War with Captain Naunton Henry Vertue of the 2nd Battalion serving as brigade major to the 11th Infantry Brigade under Major General Edward Woodgate at the Battle of Spion Kop where he was mortally wounded in January 1900

Code: 23244

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A Superb 1827 Pattern Victorian Royal Naval Officer's Dress cum Combat Sabre

With its original scabbard in brass and leather. Fancy etched fighting weight combat blade, with warranted mark. Bespoke made. In overall stunning condition, with all its original fire gilt remaining to the stunning hilt, that gives the appearance that externally it has been air-tight stored since it was retired from service, and used from the period of the 1840's up to the 1900's. Used in the era when the Royal Navy still used the magnificent 100 gunner 'Man O' War' galleons, then moving into the age steam battleships, and into the great 'Iron Clads' that were being produced for the new form of naval warfare. It was from this era that the world was to see the end of the great sailing ships that coursed the seven seas for the greatest navy the world has ever known. The Royal Navy had not been keen to sacrifice its advantage in steam ships of the line, but was determined that the first British ironclad would outmatch the French ships in every respect, particularly speed. A fast ship would have the advantage of being able to choose a range of engagement which could make her invulnerable to enemy fire. The British specification was more a large, powerful frigate than a ship-of-the-line. The requirement for speed meant a very long vessel, which had to be built from iron. The result was the construction of two Warrior-class ironclads; HMS Warrior and HMS Black Prince. The ships had a successful design, though there were necessarily compromises between 'sea-keeping', strategic range and armor protection; their weapons were more effective than those of Gloire, and with the largest set of steam engines yet fitted to a ship they could steam at 14.3 knots (26.5 km/h).[16] Yet the Gloire and her sisters had full iron-armor protection along the waterline and the battery itself. Warrior and Black Prince (but also the smaller Defence and Resistance) were obliged to concentrate their armor in a central "citadel" or "armoured box", leaving many main deck guns and the fore and aft sections of the vessel unprotected. The use of iron in the construction of Warrior also came with some drawbacks; iron hulls required more regular and intensive repairs than wooden hulls, and iron was more susceptible to fouling by marine life.One picture in the gallery is a British Man O' War HMS MarlboroughHMS Marlborough was a first-rate three-decker 131 gun screw ship built for the Royal Navy in 1855. She was begun as a sailing ship of the line (with her sister ships HMS Duke of Wellington, HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Royal Sovereign), but was completed to a modified design and converted to steam on the stocks, and another the Bombardment, by the Royal Navy ship, HMS Bulldog, of Bomarsund, during the Crimean War. Traditional hilt with fine traditional detailing of a Royal Navy crowned fouled anchor, with shagreen wire bound grip, and copper gilt and leather mounted scabbard. Used in the incredible days of the Crimean War against Russia, and in the Baltic Sea, in Royal Naval service in the days of the beginning of the great steam driven Ships-of-the-Line. A Victorian officer used this sword for both dress and in combat on the new great warships, that at first glance appear to be ships of Trafalgar vintage, but were fitted with the first massive steam engines. This sword would have been used from then, and into the incredible very beginnings of the Ironclad Battleships. Iron reinforced and armoured ships that developed into the mighty Dreadnoughts of the 20th century that were the mainstay of the most powerful Navy that the world had ever seen. British Naval Officer's swords are traditionally the finest quality swords ever worn by any serving officer of the world's navies. The blade is superbly bright with traces of old salt surface pitting

Code: 23243

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Ancient Egyptian Blue Glazed Hieroglyphic Shabti

Late Period, 664-332 BC
Shabtis (or ushabtis) were figurines in mummified form, which were placed in Egyptian tombs to do any work required by the deceased in the afterlife. They were inscribed with a special formula (Shabti formula), which would call them to life when recited. Sometimes shabtis were also inscribed with passages from the Book of the Dead, the intention of which was to secure safety for the deceased in the afterlife. Shabtis were mostly made of faience, but wood, bronze, and stone were also used – towards the Late Period, the number of shabtis inside the tomb increased, eventually allowing one for each day of the year.

A pale blue-glazed composition shabti with tripartite wig and false beard, vertical column of dedication hieroglyphic text to the lower body, plain dorsal pillar and square base. The Twenty-sixth Dynasty of Egypt (notated Dynasty XXVI, alternatively 26th Dynasty or Dynasty 26) was the last native dynasty to rule Egypt before the Persian conquest in 525 BC (although others followed). The dynasty's reign (664–525 BC) is also called the Saite Period after the city of Sais, where its pharaohs had their capital, and marks the beginning of the Late Period of ancient Egypt.This dynasty traced its origins to the Twenty-fourth Dynasty. Psamtik I was probably a descendant of Bakenranef, and following the Neo-Assyrian Empire's invasions during the reigns of Taharqa and Tantamani, he was recognized as sole king over all of Egypt. While the Neo-Assyrian Empire was preoccupied with revolts and civil war over control of the throne, Psamtik threw off his ties to the Assyrians circa 655 BC, formed alliances with King Gyges of Lydia, and recruited mercenaries from Caria and ancient Greece to resist Assyrian attacks.

With the sack of Nineveh in 612 BC and the fall of the Assyrian Empire, both Psamtik and his successors attempted to reassert Egyptian power in the Near East, but were driven back by the Neo-Babylonian Empire under Nebuchadnezzar II. With the help of Greek mercenaries, Apries was able to hold back Babylonian attempts to conquer Egypt. The Persians would eventually invaded Egypt in 525 BCE, when their king, Cambyses II, captured and later executed Psamtik III. The Shabti is 43 grams, 99mm (4"] high.

Code: 23233

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