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Fantastic 17th C. Moroccan Nimcha Sword

( ID: is750 )

A really great and rare example of a very early Moroccan nimcha. This type with the characteristic carved handle is usually made of tortoiseshell and mother of pearl but all of the extant known pieces are mounted with this type of blade, a Genoan import blade of sturdy fighting proportions for the Algerian and North African corsairs that would have carried this sword in the late 17th-early 18th C.  This example is very unusual in that it is mounted with a carved ivroy grip displaying rich age and the exact correct type of brass crossguard with the thinner quillons that in addition to the other features date this to a very early period for Nimchas.  The crossguard is slightly shaky but the blade is tight to the hilt.

Several similarly shaped and mounted examples are known in several collections. See a similar example in Art of the Muslim Knight, page 77 where that example is described as Oran, Ottoman Empire ca. 1700. Other example are known in the Armeria Real, Madrid; the Moscow Kremlin Museum no. 6022 from the collection of Peter the Great, and another example in the Metropolitan Museum of Art gifted by George Stone, of Stones' Glossary fame. Finally another example is in the Topkapi Saray museum, and one has previously been sold by Bob Hales as photographed in his wonderful new publication.

For the lover of history and of one of the most interesting periods in European and Ottoman history.

Overall length is 26", blade is 21".

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