This peculiar sword was used by the Garo people of Assam for fighting, clearing the jungle, and animal…
Height 10.5 cm
Width 10.5 cm
7 cm under head
Iron, wood, brass copper
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A North Indian tribal axe. Very little is known about them in the literature, and the workmanship varies from tribal, like this one, to lavish gold decorated pieces in the Rajput style, with wootz steel.
This example has an iron head with brass animals attached to them. We see an elephant's head, a tiger, an antelope, and boar on each side. There is also a last animal head near the top of the blade that remains unidentified. The curved blade terminates in the stylized, semi-abstract antelope head complete with twisted iron horns.
Along edge and spine are inlaid a copper strip. So deep on the edge side that the cut goes all the way through where there is some loss.
One would think the construction is purely ceremonial, but the axe's shaft is reinforced with a strip of metal, held in place by three iron pins with brass flower shaped washers.
A very curious piece.
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These mysterious weapons were already obsolete when the first ethnographers encountered them.
Of jambiya form, with pattern welded blade and fine silver scabbard mounts.
An interesting South Indian style katar with an imported European blade.
Blade of Persian shamshir form, but of Indian make. Mounts in Kutch style gilt copper.
Broad bladed example with horn hilt and engraved blade.