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1815 French Trophy Bladed British Cavalry Bandmaster's Sabre (sold)

An 1815 British cavalry bandmaster's sword / sabre made with a Waterloo captured French blade.

Waterloo French Trophy Bladed British Cavalry Bandmaster's Sabre

Sales enquiries

The very fine 34 inch blade is signed "J Spol M Fourbisseur à Metz"; it is French and Spol would never had made a sword for the English. The blade is almost certainly from a senior French officer's sabre as it is fine and slender, not a fighting blade. Jacques Spol was a craftsman dealing in the finest quality items. The hilt however is 100% English; lions head and absolutely typical acorn finals to the quillons. The langets of the hilt cover the forte / ricasso of the blade and with it the maker's name; Spol would never have done such a thing himself (over his own name), so the hilt is an English replacement. Spol produced swords from 1770 to 1809.

Up until 1820 bandmasters and regiment bands for that matter were civilians, so the wearing of a blade without the British monarch's royal cypher on it was acceptable. Possibly from the Peninsula War but most likely from the 100 Days War (Waterloo), a British cavalry regiment captured a senior French officer's sabre, took it home, re-hilted the blade and then listened to their band with extra pride and mirth, given the ban's master was wearing the spoils of war with the French.

For these reasons, this is such a rare, actually unique sword. Made before bandmasters became army personnel and issued with regulated patterns of swords, just after Waterloo. I can safely say you will never find another of these. For that reason the sale price is £800 and when you think you are getting a senior Napoleonic officer's blade within that price, it becomes a bargain. Further / full sized images available upon request. My item reference number is 727 (278).











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