French An XI Light Cavalry Trooper's Sabre,
British capture, sold
In very good condition, a Napoleonic Wars French An XI light cavalry
trooper's sabre, dated August 1813, with British capture markings.
The blade has subsequent additional non-French markings to the
blade "D 53"; the font and style is 100% English. Clearly,
the weapon was captured from the French as the French would never
so mark their sabres. Most likely a capture from the earlier Peninsular
War (rather than the 100 Days War which culminated in the Battle
of Waterloo), as we have not seen Waterloo capture swords marked
this way, which implies the weapon was captured for regimental reference
/ training (the markings show that it was taken into a British regiment's
armory). Although it could be a Portuguese or possibly Spanish capture
(from the French) the font and format is typically English, not
anyone else's. The D 53 are certainly not Dutch / Belgian / Russian
/ Prussian markings, so, again, we suspect this was most likely
a Peninsular War capture by a British regiment, rather than an individual
officer or soldier.
The French poinçons are 100% correct for the date inscription
(August 1813), so the sword was in Imperial French use for sure.
The 34 3/4 Inch blade is in good condition with very little damage
to the cutting edge, and is firm in the hilt. The hilt / guard and
grip (complete with original brass "olives") are all good,
the leather a little aged and worn as you should expect. There is
an additional post-French stamp to just under the pommel, "852",
again in the typical British font / style. The D 53 (troop D, trooper
/ weapon 53) mark implying it was actually issued to a British trooper
for presumably practice purposes. The very heavy steel scabbard
has been over-painted black (it looks period, so we have left it
as is); the throat piece is missing and there are a couple of small
chinks / kinks but otherwise the scabbard is in very good shape.
The sabre sheathes and draws well, but is tight when fully sheathed.
You will not find another with this kind of unique history and
in such condition for any price, let alone our price of only £xxxx
(too late, now sold - we will divulge the origibnal sales price
for a small fee if required). Please quote item reference O80 (1394).
Further / full sized images available upon request.