In good condition, a scarce slotted hilt 41st (Welch) Regiment of Foot Officer’s Sword with captured French blade.
The sword is a British slotted hilt infantry officer’s sword, made from 1775 to 1790, with Prince of Wales feathers to the “cigar” band cartouche on the grip for the 41st Welch / Welsh Regiment (of Foot). The blade is French, made in Solingen, with the cutlers / fourbisseur’s initials “S H” (most likely for “Samuel Hoppe” or “Simon Helvig” or “Samuel Henckels”) to the forte. We believe the only explanation for this marriage is that an officer of the Welch Regiment brought home the blade / a French sword as a battle trophy from the British victory over the French at the capture of Martinique in March 1794 and then had the blade mounted into his sword hilt; this practice was popular.
The 28 1/2 inch blade still has good amounts of blue and gilt etching remaining, and is firm in the hilt. The steel hilt / guard good. The chequered ebony / ebonised grip is good but with an age crack beginning to show near the badge (indicating most likely it is ebony itself). The leather and steel fittings scabbard is good for age and retains its frog button; the scabbard would have been specially made for the blade and the lack of suspension rings indicates it was for an officer who was stuck in the old ways / retiring. The sword sheathes and draws well.
Lovely sword; if only we knew the original officer and his exact military career. Anyway, the salient features / facts of the sword speak volumes enough to say this one is a steal at £1500. Please quote item reference AG63. Further / full sized images available upon request. Box 1504-117x15x14 (1.392).