German 19th Century Hunting Dagger/SwordPosted: 13/10/17 (11:11am)
So first the specifics.
Blade length: 42 cm. Width at ricasso: 29 mm. Spine thickness at ricasso: 6 mm.
Flat spine and single edged blade with a broad, single fuller on both sides. Double edged for the last 14 cm.
Brass hilt furniture and bone hilt.
Scabbard is leather with nickel or nickel plated fittings. They could be silver but I think it is more likely that it is nickel.
The ricasso is marked with an oval comprised of dots containing the initials "F. H." which is the maker's mark for Friedrich Horster (the elder) in the early to mid 19th Century.
And there my knowledge about this dagger/hunting sword ends. In fact, I am assuming it is a hunting dagger/sword. It may not be, although I think it is a reasonable assumption. It certainly looks like a mid 19th century hunting sword but it could be a Prussian naval hanger. The line between hunting hanger and naval hanger or cuttoe is very blurry, indeed, naval hangers derived from hunting swords. Even the name "Cuttoe" is a corruption by early English sailors of the French "couteau de chasse" meaning "hunting knife."
So, I would love to hear from anyone who can shed more light on this. Please do get in touch either through the website or via Facebook.
On the subject of Facebook, I ran a competition, well, actually a give away, on Facebook. All entrants needed to do was to like the post, comment on which item on the Bygone Blades website they liked the most and then share the post. Having done that they would be entered into a draw to win a mint condition Swiss M57 bayonet which I would cover the cost of sending to the winner - wherever they were in the world.
Disappointingly, despite having over 2000 views, very few people entered. In fact, prior to the give away beginning I had decided to give the bayonet to whoever the 73 entrant was. I didn't get that many entries. In the end, I wrote the entrant's names on a cloak room/raffle ticket and drew one from a bowl.
Why so few entries? Surely the required like, post and share wasn't too much to ask? Certainly, there were some people who liked the post but didn't comment or share it, so they weren't entered. Others shared the post but didn't comment or like it. I wasn't sure what to make of this. Were they sharing it so that friends could enter, but they themselves were not interested in winning the bayonet?
Maybe it was the prize itself? Ok sure, Swiss bayonets are not exactly top of many people's want list but it was free and in great condition. It is also a very well made, high quality bayonet produced by Victorinox (of Swiss Army knife fame) and would make a great practical knife.
I guess I'll never really know why so few people entered. It hasn't put me off though and I will be having another give away soon.
I'm thinking a sword this time. But a sword is a valuable thing to give away and an expensive item to ship so I am a little nervous. Maybe I'll stick with another bayonet and see if the number of entries picks up before I offer a sword.