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Rare Mughal Dagger with Parrot-Form Ivory Hilt
Northern India
18th century

length: 35.6cm, weight: 179g

This unusual and rare dagger has what is probably a European-made steel single-edged blade and a hilt of ivory that has been naturalistically carved as a
parrot. The hilt has been stained with green and red - popular colours for staining ivory in 18th century India - and the 'eyes' are of rubies or garnets set within
gold or gilt settings. The use of a parrot is probably a royal symbol. There are traces of gold overlay on the integrated bolster.

The blade is stamped on one side with the numbers '98' - perhaps an inventory number.

The dagger is in fine condition for its age. The are no losses or repairs to the hilt.

References:
Elgood, R., Arms & Armour: At the Jaipur Court, Royal Collection, Niyogi Books, 2015.
Hales, R.,
Islamic and Oriental Arms and Armour: A Lifetime's Passion, Robert Hale CI Ltd, 2013.

Provenance: private UK collection.

Inventory no.: 4395

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