Swords, Knives, bayonets and edged weapons
Victorian Cane with Concealed Inertia Spike
This late Victorian Gentlemans Cane has a black ebony shaft with a round Ivory pommel. The tip is a nicely turned horn ferrule. The pommel has a round brass door which, when opened with a quick flick or jerk of the stick, allows a square section spike of approx 3 1/4" to fly out and lock in place. The spike is returned by squeezing the spike to compress a leaf spring and it drops back into the shaft. The streets of major cities were rough places after dark in the late 1800s and weapons of self defence were popular among the wealthier classes. Although lacking the romantic flourish of a sword stick these canes with an inertia spike were very effective. Unlike a sword cane they could be brought into operation with a potential assailant standing very close to the user.
Pair of Naga "Head Hunter" Spears
This composed pair of spears is from the Naga people of North East India and North West Burma. The groups of tribes which forms the Naga people are famous for a war like history, sweeping down from their hill top villages to raid other tribes on the Plains below. They are perhaps most famous for their culture of head hunting, the head of an enemy being said to give power and strength to the victor. Thier head hunting activities are said to have continued into times as recent as the 1960s. The Nagas clashed with the British Imperial forces in 1828 when Assam was annexed, and despite various treaties violence sporadically broke out, as it continues to do today in clashes with the Indian government. These spears are from the 19th Century, and in good condition. The shafts are decorated with the typical Naga red and black woven trim and goat hair tufts. They measure 6' 4" in length.
£300 the pair
Imperial German First World War Trench Flail
A cast spiked ball on an 8" length of chain attached to a 14" shaft. One swing of this device would be simply devastating and illustrated the brutality of trench warfare. Trench raids - or bashing parties - were sent over from both sides. Firearms were often prohibited as the raids were supposed to silent affairs to grab a prisoner or two and drag them back to your own trench system. Flails and clubs were used; some home made from bits of furniture or machinery. Others like this example were specifically made. The wood shaft has a number of metal studs pressed into it. I suspect these are a later addition. The ball is crudely cast, but is in keeping with other examples I have seen, and the imperfect alignment of the two halves would in no way reduce the effectiveness of this weapon. The whole is in good condition.