This is a rare early 19th Century weapon from North West India and modern-day Pakistan. The Bhuj, also known as Kuttai or Elephant Knife is an axe-like, short pole arm from the Sindh region (Pakistan) and Gujarat (India). The name Bhuj, is derived from the city of Bhuj, the capital of the Kutch District of Gujarat.
Bhuj were high status weapons popular among the Sindhi cavalry of the Soomra and Samma Dynasties of Sindh and were wielded with devastating effect on the battlefield and carried as a sceptre-like badge of status.
The 194mm heavy, recurved blade has a slightly rounded spine and clip point. Typical of these weapons, the broad blade protrudes from the forehead and trunk of a brass elephant head, giving the pole arm its nickname of “Elephant Knife.” The folded steel blade is in excellent condition and beautifully decorated with a gilt inlay of scrolling floral work. The blade retains its edge.
The 400mm, hollow iron haft of the Bhuj is beautifully decorated with inlaid silver flower heads and foliage. The haft terminates in a brass urn shaped finial that unscrews to reveal a stiletto dagger with a 204mm double-edged blade and needle point. The concealed dagger is typical of these pole arms and is in excellent condition, screwing tightly into the haft and held snugly without rattle or play.
This is a very fine example of a rare Indian Bhuj. They do not come onto the market often.