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1796 P British Light Cavalry Trooper's Sabre by Woolley & Deakin (sold)

Good condition 1796 P light cavalry trooper's sabre, sword made by Woolley & Deakin, scabbard marked to James Thompson of London.

1796 P British Light Cavalry Trooper's Sabre by Woolley & Deakinimage 663 2

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A very satisfying sabre by Woolley & Deakin, the throat of the scabbard marked to J Thompson Sword Cutler 54 Jermyn Street London. As a sword cutler, Thompson basically assembled or simply put his name on items from an actual sword maker. The scabbard clearly is original to the sabre. Mismatched swords and scabbards from this period often mean they were battlefield pick-ups. Where the swords of fallen soldiers were placed into the first scabbard that could be found that fit. This I believe is not one of those swords. I am 99% certain this sabre and this scabbard are original to each other.

Woolley & Deakin were a famous maker in Birmingham, England who supplied these swords to both the British and Americans (US). Of course, this one was made for a British soldier. Thompson's mark on the scabbard dates it post-1810. It is also almost certainly pre-1816 as very few enlisted men's swords were made after the 100 Days War (Waterloo) because there were already stocks, plus fallen men's swords, plus many soldiers were decommissioned after the war. So this sabre was most likely made just before the Battle of Waterloo. Was it in that most famous of battles? I am afraid I do not know.

The sabre has been well looked after more recently, though clearly the blade has suffered from some rust pitting in the past and a previous owner has shined (sanded down) everything. But the 33 inch blade is in very good order generally. There are no inspection stamps visible on the blade because it has been rubbed down, but I do not think there were any originally if the sabre had been sold by Thompson to the regiment directly. At that time regiments still bought swords from their own preferred suppliers. If there were a British ordinance mark, that would likely mean the sabre and scabbard were a mismatch, which I have already stated I am sure they are not.

The blade is form in the hilt. The hilt too has been rubbed down and shined, but is in very good order despite that. The grip is original, though the original twisted grip wire bindings are gone. The sabre sheathes well, although with a little rattle as you would expect; as previously indicated, the scabbard fits the sabre perfectly. The scabbard has been rubbed down perhaps a little less and is in very good order.

This is a very good sword with the potential of some research (to find out which regiment of cavalry Thompson supplied). Further / full sized pictures available upon request. Sword reference number 663 (263).

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