George V RAF Sword, Air Commodore Graham
Clarke Bladon, sold
In good condition, a late or slightly post WW1, George 5th British
RAF officer's sword, marked to G C Bladon, who became Air Commodore
Graham Clarke Bladon CB CBE.
Not surprisingly, this sword is etched with the maker's name "Gieves"
who are were renowned British Royal Navy outfitters and sword cutlers
in Portsmouth and elsewhere. Not surprisingly because Graham Clarke
Bladon joined and trained with the Royal Naval Air Service before
it was amalgamated with other British air services into the RAF
(Royal Air Force) on the 1st April 1918. This sword most likely
was his commissioning sword on the 12th December 1919, but may have
been bought by him / his family earlier as he shows as being a pilot
trainee in late 1917. Graham Clarke Bladon went on to become a very
senior RAF officer and ultimately the Commander, Royal Ceylon Air
Force from 1951 to 1958. It is believed this sword served with him
until just after World War Two.
Related information: RAF
Web / Ceylon
- Sri Lanka Air Force
The 32 1/2 inch blade is in good condition, the etching still clear,
some patina spots here and there, firm in the hilt. The hilt is
good and retains some of its original gilt. The fishskin grip and
associated twisted grip wire bindings are good, though the grip
has aged and moved a little away from the backpiece (to leave a
small gap) as is quite common with these swords for some reason.
The sword know it aged and I suspect a later (perhaps just pre-WW2)
replacement for the 1918/1919 original. The leather and gilt steel
fittings scabbard is generally good, but aged and the gilt very
worn. The top locket bearing the engraving "G C Bladon".
The sword sheaths and draws very well.
These swords generally sell for £1000 without any provenance.
Further / full sized pictures available upon request. Please quote
item reference number D31 (705).