British Pattern 1856/58 Enfield Sword Bayonet

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This rare pattern 1856/58 British sword bayonet was made for the Model 1853, .577 calibre Enfield (2-band) rifled infantry short-musket. As well as being issued to British units, these rifles and bayonets were sold in large numbers to both the Union and Confederate armies during the American Civil War. This bayonet is a typical export example, as it does not bear British military issue or War Department ownership stamps.
The 577mm yataghan blade has a flat spine and broad single fuller on both sides. The recurved blade is double-edged for the last 120mm. The blade was service sharpened and retains its fighting edge.
The blade is in good condition and is free from rust but has scratches along its length consistent with field sharpening and cleaning.
The iconic steel crosspiece with cockscomb and button finials is bright and free of rust with a mild patina. The small (approx. 3.5mm) step from the tang of the blade to the interior of the muzzle ring identifies this bayonet as being the 1858 model, as opposed to the 1856 model, which has no step. The step up to the muzzle ring was to allow for the barrel band, which included the lug onto which the 1858 model bayonet was fixed. The press-stud and external spring locking mechanism work perfectly. The leather grip scales are in good condition.
The bayonet is complete with its original leather scabbard with steel mounts. The steel furniture has a mottled age patina and is bright and without rust or damage. The steel frog stud is stamped with an issue number, “248” and the same number is stamped on the throat of the locket. The leather is in excellent condition and the stitching is intact and tight.
This is a rare British bayonet made for the export market and may have seen service during the American Civil War.