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Title Georgian naval dirk
Nationality British
Period c 1805-20

This would have been worn more as a symbol of rank than as a working weapon, the blade being only six-and-three-quarter inches. During the Napoleonic Wars, quite small boys from the age of 12+ were used as midshipmen in order to train the next generation of officers. This was probably for such a junior officer/midshipman.

This dirk has a two-piece ivory grip with gilt mounts. The gilding on the hilt is approximately 80%+ original finish under a coating of lacquer, which I hesitate to remove. Perhaps only 10% or less of the gilding on the scabbard remains and there are some dents at the base of the scabbard on both sides. However, as a nice ornamental touch, the scabbard finial is in the form of an neo-classical urn, which could suggest the slightly earlier date. The blade is a conventional double-edged one with a central fuller and has brightwork etching on both sides with martial trophies, drums, flags, fasces, etc.

If you want to comment on this item—re quality, age, etc—please email me.

[Edged Weapons : Dirks : British : 19th Century]


The tropical belt and buckle turned up on time and I am very happy with it and it has been a pleasure doing business with you.

D F, UK, 16.03.2016

Buckle arrived this morning. Better than expected. Many thanks.

M H, UK, 11.12.2007