Scarce British P1845 Staff Sergeant’s sword made by Reeves of Birmingham, one of mid-19th Century England’s best blade smiths.
The 810mm single edged blade has a flat spine and a broad single fuller on both sides. The blade has a slight curve and terminates in a quill point. The blade is a rare transition type blade, mid-way between the Wilkinson pattern blade and the earlier 1822 pattern pipe-back blade. The blade was sharpened for action and has also been sharpened along the last 20cm of the top edge.
The blade is in good condition with patches of mild age related tarnishing. There are a few minor nicks in the blade most likely from edge-to-edge contact. The combat nicks testify to its use by the Sergeant and the campaigns in which this sword saw service can be researched as the sword is regimentally marked and dated.
The ricasso bears the maker’s name “Reeves” and the obverse ricasso has a Birmingham inspection mark of a crown “B” and the number “13,” The same inspection mark is found on the underside of the ricasso.
The solid brass guard is the Gothic 1845 pattern which replaced the 1822 pattern folding guard. Although this fixed guard hilt was officially adopted in 1845, earlier examples of fixed guard hilts are to be found, as are later examples with a folding guard.
The guard has a great age patina and bears an oval cartouche containing Queen Victoria’s Royal cypher. There is some very minor distortion to the bars at the front of the guard.
The beautifully aged hilt is bound in fish skin, much of which has worn smooth with use, testifying to this sword’s long service. The copper wire binding is in good condition. The hilt’s back strap has acanthus style decoration flowing into the stepped pommel with a flattened tang button. A letter “R” is stamped on the right-hand side of the pommel.
The base of the guard’s quillon is engraved with “SF.ST.6” over “36RT” over the date “1858.”
This is a great and honest example of a rare Staff Sergeant’s sword.