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C1740 Gordon Clan Officer's Broadsword, Culloden, initialed, sold

Believed to be the broadsword of Lieutenant George Gordon of the Jacobite Scottish army, captured at Culloden in 1746, in very good condition, initialed "G G" in the Gordon Clan officer manner on a blade type associated with the Clan Gordon.

Circa 1840 Gordon Clan Officer's Broadsword, Culloden Provenance, Initials

Sales enquiries

It is virtually undeniable that this is a circa 1740 Scottish broadsword of an officer of the Clan Gordon, as the style of blade is the same as one illustrated (plate 1:21 - sword property of Geoffrey Jenkinson) in "Culloden: The Swords and the Sorrows: An Exhibition to Commemorate the Jacobite Rising of 1745 and the Battle of Culloden 1746" published by the National Trust for Scotland (ISBN 0-901625-58-2); the large 1 1/2 inch ricasso, the twin fullers down either side of the central line. In addition, the blade of this sword is engraved "G. G" and the sword owned by Geoffrey Jenkinson also bears the original owner's initials, in that case "L" over "L G" (speculated to be the sword of Lord Lewis Gordon). So the blade type and the use of initials on the blade clearly connects this sword with the Gordon Clan.

Research shows that there was one Lieutenant George Gordon, of Glenbucket, third son of the famous Major General John Gordon, ‘Old Glenbucket.’ He survived Culloden, and escaped from prison in Inverness. He became a doctor in Jamaica where he died (Source: The Gay Gordons, by John Malcolm Bulloch, London, 1908).

This would explain how a broadsword of the Clan Gordon came into English hands (we purchased the item from an English collection). We can not show the illustration of the other Gordon sword as the book is copyrighted, though the book is often out of print / unavailable, so we are happy to provide a copy of the relevant illustration for personal reference use only.

The 31 inch blade is in very good condition for its age, if a little over-zealously cleaned, the fuller etching and "G G" still clear. There is the remains of what looks like a maker's mark on the other side of the ricasso, but we are not able to determine exactly what it is. We believe the blade to be Spanish made, or possibly Prussian, as would be typical for Scottish swords of this era. There is some pitting to the blade, but not much, plus a few nicks. The blade is firm in the hilt, the hilt is generally in very good condition with only minimal damage. There appears to be the remains of the sword cutler's initials on the rear quillon; we can make out a "T" but nothing more. The grip appears to be original, of leather, aged / dry and loose now on the tang of the blade.

The provenance linking this sword to the Gordon Clan at the time of Culloden is exceptional. Our research has uncovered only one likely owner of the sword, Lieutenant George Gordon.

This sword is a solid investment. Full sized / additional photos available upon request. Please quote item reference number E83 (841).

 

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