Basket Hilt Firangi
Origin: India (possibly South India)
Date: 18th/19th century
Materials: Steel, wood and cotton
A large Hindu Basket Hilt Firangi of large proportions and a quality chiselled hilt.
THE BASKET HILT
The hilt of the typical Hindu basket hilt of larger than average proportions. It's made of steel, and entirely constructed by forging and chiseling (no casting). At the end of the disc-pommel is a long, curved spike with a flower bud shaped finial. Also, it would give extra protection of the lower arm. The hilt throughout is chiselled and pierced with intricate cuts to provide a fine boarder along the edges of the hilt. On its own, the hilt is nicer than those found in todays market, and in this lies its history and beauty. The larger than average proportions and chiselled design indicate that this was a functional sword, to be utilised in combat, rather than serving a decorative purpose for court wear. The hilt is larger than average and would have specifically been made for the user.
The blade is straight with a single edge. The blade is of a nice build and is of pattern welded steel, or Skela, as it is referred to in India. The blade is showing an active watering pattern of nice contract. The blade is of high quality and shows no fault - it is evident this was a 'fighting blade'
Accompanying this beautiful sword is a blue velvet scabbard with gold trim.
Overall, this is a very good example of a Basket hilt Firangi (or Saif in India) with a clean and without fault blade. The larger proportions show this a functional sword, which is a nice change from the usual decorative examples. The skela (pattern welded) blade is a great addition to this sword. A great addition for seasoned and intermediate collectors.