BEAUTIFUL TIFFANY CIVIL WAR PRESENTATION GRADE CAVALRY OFFICER’S SABER

$5,500.00

Quantity Available: 1

Item Code: 1047-140

Shipping: Determined by Method & Location of buyer

To Order:
Call 717-334-0347,
Fax 717-334-5016, or E-mail

This wonderful saber by Tiffany falls into the general category of their presentation grade No. 2 cavalry officer’s sabers, described as having a, “pierced and chased Basket-hilt with Shark-skin grip; pierced and chased Scabbard-bands and Toe-piece; Hilt and Scabbard mountings silver-plated..,” though there were plenty of variations possible and in this case the scabbard body is browned rather than polished steel, silver plate, or silver, and the drag, or toe-piece, is a simple blade integral with the scabbard.

This uses an Austrian-style cup hilt and British-style blade, likely made by S&K. (See Thillmann, Cav. and Art. Sabers 436ff. for details.) The hilt is silver plated steel, with birdshead pommel and capstan, but with no backstrap. The pommel is engraved with scrolling floral motifs. The guard has no extending quillon is pierced to also produce swirling floral designs accentuated with engraving on the exterior. The top front of the guard is slotted in the Austrian fashion for a sword knot. The underside of the guard shows three small rivet holes that likely held a large separately applied silver U.S. shield. The grip in sharkskin, with fine nodules, bound with three strands of silver wire: a central coiled “dragoon style” wire bordered by two finer, twisted strands. The leather blade pad under the guard is in place.

The blade is gently curved, about 36 inches long with a 10 ½ inch false edge and single, wide central fuller. The blade pad is in place. The obverse ricasso is etched “warranted to cut wrought iron” in an oval cartouche with six-pointed flower at center and lobed border. Floral scrolls then reach up to a trophy of arms that includes fasces, halberds, and cuirassier style helmet. Above this is etched a U.S. shield with foliate script “U.S.” underneath, the pair capped by a sunburst glory at bottom and top, with more floral scrolls above and the frosting terminating in a long Arabesque point. The reverse has a similar sequence etched at top (foliate) and bottom (foliate and trophy of arms,) but with the central a panel featuring an extensive spread-winged eagle with arrows and olive branch on a long “E Pluribus Unum” bannerole. The ricasso is etched “Tiffany & Co. / New York.”

The scabbard body is steel, browned, with separate screw-fastened trumpet mouth, and ornate 6-inch long openwork filigree ring mounts of German silver with silver plating that pick up motifs in the hilt and the blade etching. The drag is a simple iron drag.

The hilt engraving and the blade etching on this are super. The blade is smooth metal, bright, and has a good edge and point. The etching is vivid. The sword also shows some signs of real use in the field: some minor wear to the sharkskin grip, a little rubbing to the pommel, and the missing shield on the underside of the guard. The scabbard shows some minor dings, a few rubs and a little thin crustiness in one or two spots. Most interestingly, it shows a very slight curvature typical of swords carried against the side of a cavalry mount. All of which is a rare combination of a robust, well-preserved, high-grade sword carried by an officer in the saddle and not relegated to his baggage or sent home for safe-keeping. It was also made by the producer of arguably the most elegant swords of the war. This would be a stand-out piece in cavalry officer or edged weapons collection.  [sr] [ph:L]

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