Object Title

Sword (khanda) with dagger (katar) and scabbards

Sword (khanda) with dagger (katar) and scabbards



Object Number



Purchased from the Great Exhibition, 1851

Physical Description

The blade is of regular khanda form with a long fretted reinforce on one edge and a short one on the other. It is fitted to the iron basket hilt by screws through the blade seating. The hilt differs from normal in having the knucklebow made in the form of a hollow box to which are applied gilded peacocks, one of which conceals a small sliding shutter that opens to reveal a small hole leading to the hollow compartment. The dome capping the disc pommel is decorated by four gilded spots, one of which is a sliding shutter which opens to form a rounded hole to the interior. Positioned below the hilt and alongside the blade is a percussion pistol, operated by a trigger that protrudes into the hilt. On the opposite side are two lugs to which the katar can be attached. A rotating catch secures the katar in position. The entire inside of the hilt is lined with red silk edged with a silver fringe. The entire hilt has gilded edges and rather crude gilded flowers and other decoration. The katar has a short blade with a slight riccasso, the central panel being decorated with chiselled leaves and a central fern frond. The hilt is gilded, chiselled with foliage and the dagger is provided with a red velvet scabbard having a gilded chape.


Dimensions: The length of the main blade is 789 mm, the overall length of the sword 929 mm, the length of gun barrel being 61 mm. The length of katar blade is 144 mm, the overall length of the darrer is 285 mm and the length of its scabbard is 164 mm. Weight: The weight of the sword and pistol combination is 1.76 kg, the katar being 0.362 kg and the scabbard of the katar 0.018 kg.


12 mm

Inscriptions and Marks



Bibliographic References

John Hewitt, Official Catalogue of the Tower Armouries, London, 1859, no. xv.219, p. 103.

Viscount Dillon, Illustrated guide to the Armouries, London, 1910, no. xv.245, p.12.

Thom Richardson, An introduction to Indian arms and armour, Leeds, Royal Armouries, 2007: 33


Hewitt records that this sword is similar to no. xv.100 (Hewitt, 1859).