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Title London police cutlass
Nationality English
Period c 1820
 (This item is subject to special postage, click here for more information.)

This is the first issue cutlass for the London police of George IV's reign. It is made by the Gill family (Birmingham cutlers), who ceased business in 1826. The only other people who could have used this would have been the various dock police in the London area. Occasionally these turn up with the area letter for a London district on them.

Police cutlasses in this period were normally only issued for riot duty and convict escort, but in the turbulent years after Waterloo they were clearly necessary for preserving public order.

'No 26' on the hilt and 'No 39' on the scabbard are almost certainly rack numbers and, although mismatched, clearly, from all photographic evidence and my own experience, this is the correct type of scabbard for the weapon.

The leatherwork has suffered with age (with considerable crackelure and loss of the original nap of the surface), but the seam is intact on the reverse. The bottom chape has had some careful silver solder repair where the metal had cracked open. There is some minor denting to both chapes. The copper securing rod for the top chape has been shortened somewhat, resulting in the top chape being loose. The hilt is a little buckled in parts, but it has the original fish skin grip, which is in remarkable shape for its age.

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

[Edged Weapons : Swords : English : 19th Century]


The Saber is really beautiful.

R K, Austria, 29.06.2017

Just to let you know the two propelling pencils, in the form of pistols, have just arrived in the condition you sent them. Thank you very much indeed for your excellent and prompt service, and I will keep a look out on your site for any other pencils you may have for sale in the future.

M H, UK, 09.02.2011