Superb and rare 18th C. Hindu Indian Sukhela or Firangi Sword with damascus blade (ID: is832)
Superb and rare 18th C. Hindu Indian Sukhela or Firangi Sword with damascus blade
|( ID: is832 )|
A truly unique and rare sword from the 17th to 18th century, this sukehla features an ex-quisite damascus blade finely chiseled with a false edge. The piece is in excellent condition with its original polish, as it has been maintained in its scabbard for centuries. The handle echoes the stated time period, forged in sheet silver.
The original scabbard is in very nice condition, though the tip has separated but can be re-paired easily. The entire piece extends 37 inches, while the blade is 31 inches featuring a fine thick cross section. The punch decoration is mildly tarnished darker but will restore well. Indian made straight blades were called Sukhelas and often carried by the Marathas. The more common firangis were carried through North and South India. The Maratha Empire, also referred to as the Maratha Confederacy, was a imperial power of the region that ruled from 1674 to 1818.
At its peak, the empire dominated much of the subcontinent, encompassing a territory of nearly 3 million km². Historically, the Marathas are credited with ending the Mughal rule in India. They are seen as instrumental in developing the Indian Navy and transforming warfare on the seas by instituting a blue-water navy and mounting cannons on ships.
A rivalry between the Sindhia and Holkar clans dominated the confederacy's affairs into the early 19th century, as did the clashes with the British and the British East India Com-pany in the three Anglo-Maratha Wars. In the Third Anglo-Maratha War, the last Peshwa, Baji Rao II, was defeated by the British in 1818. Most of the former Maratha Empire was absorbed by British India, however some of the Maratha states remained as vassals of the British until India became independent in 1947.