Object Title




about 1830

Object Number



From Store 1967 (IBE). The red number is of the type used at the Imperial War Museum pre-1928 and this sword is therefore likely to be one of the swords brought to the Tower in 1938 by Charles ffoulkes when he set up the study collections. However, there is no entry under either 15325 or 15327 in the Imperial War Museum registers (inf. from David Penn in letter of 10 Sept 1998).

Physical Description

Brass stirrup hilt, originally of similar shape to the British 1796 Light Cavalry Trooper's pattern but main part of knuckle-guard inaccurately restored to a D-shape; combined pommel and backpiece in the form of a stylized lion-like beast with the mane extending down the backpiece; the knuckle-guard has a sword-knot slot near its end; the tang end rather large and crudely finished; shield-shaped langets, both made as a separate piece and both with a crowned 1LG (L1G) monogram and border all in relief; grey fish-skin-covered wooden grip, lacking the wire binding a section of the skin by the pommel; brass ferrule at end nearest the grip, both ends of which are decorated with pairs of incised lines.

Curved, single-edged blade with flat back and a false edge for the approx. last 210 mm (8 1/4 in); the single, broad fuller extends from the hilt to approx. 335 mm (9 1/4 in) from the tip and the final section of the blade has a slight medial ridge. There is a maker's name on the back (see Marks).

General condition: generally poor: knuckle-guard restored (see above); inner langet loose; outer one has flatenned base; design on both langets very rubbed; backpiece is out of line with grip and there is a gap between; grip covering incomplete (see above); blade has extensive patches of corrosion (now cleaned); minor nicks to cutting edge in half nearest tip. Gives overall impression of having been inexpertly dismantled and restored.


Dimensions: Overall length: 978 mm (38 1/2 in), blade length: 839 mm (33 in), blade width, by hilt: 33 mm (1.3 in) Weight: 885 gm (2 lb 0 oz)

Inscriptions and Marks

On blade, on back, near hilt, apparently relief etched (now very rubbed): [R]EEVES & GREAVES (maker's name) in a rectangular frame with concave sided pointed ends (visible only at end nearest tip).On blade, on inside, near langet, in red paint: 15327 or possibly 15325 (an Imperial War Museum registration number?).


Bibliographic References

B. Robson, Swords of the British Army..., 1st edn, London, 1975, p. 171, Pl. 179; revised edn, 1996, p. 254, pl. 220 (note that the knuckle-guard has not, as stated, been deformed; the greater part of it has been replaced but to the wrong shape).


For information on and dating evidence provided by the maker's name, and for general information on this pattern of sword, see Notes in entry for IX.5446, which is a better-preserved example.