The British army has had several patterns of saw-back bayonets but only one saw-back sword. The pattern 1856 infantry Pioneers’ short sword (hanger) was issued to the ten Pioneers within each infantry battalion.
The 562mm blade has 27 pairs of saw teeth, extending for 390mm from the ricasso. The blade is double-edged for the last 150mm and terminates in a spear point. The blade has age and use related wear and a pale patina with speckles of darker tarnish and shallow pitting. The sword was service sharpened and retains its upper and lower edges.
The ricasso retains remnants of a crowned inspectors stamp and the letter W.
The blades’ full width tang is hilted with ribbed brass grip scales held in place by four steel rivets. The thick brass stirrup guard has some mild distortion and the disk quillon has been repaired.
This is a fair example of a scarce British Pioneers sword that has had a working life.
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