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Sword, Sabre & Military Articles & Research

Below are links to pages and resource areas regarding some of our own work on edged weapons plus material (such as the Hussars resource) we saved from being lost for ever when the previous owner decided to close his site (Hussars.org). Our own articles are what we believe are the facts regarding certain contentious and often misrepresented swords / sabres.

But now, below, is an article warning.

Common antique sword dealer / auction house bad practices.

Here are some common bad practices to watch out for (we do none of these). If you are in any doubt about a sword you intend buying or have bought, we offer an authenticity / identification service.

1) Selling reproductions as authentic antique swords.
There are a LOT of reproduction swords available, mostly made on the Indian subcontinent, some made in the Ukraine / Russia, often with fake markings. Because they are new, they look new, so unscrupulous sellers age them one way or another; for a dishonest dealer, it is worth burying a repro sword in their garden for a few weeks in order to pass it off as authentic. Look around and you will find these items being sold as reproductions on various sites.

2) Adding spurious regimental markings.
It is unfortunately a widespread practice where militaria dealers arm themselves with a fine metal cutter and add spurious markings to swords, so they can then sell them at vast profits, claiming they were at the Battle of Waterloo or the Charge of the Light Brigade. To the novice, these markings look real. To experts like us, we can tell them instantly. These fraudulent militaria dealer acts actually devalue the swords they afflict, so that when you come to value or sell them, you will be very unhappy indeed.

3) Passing off generic swords as something else.
It never ceases to amaze us how often we see experienced dealers selling off generic swords as something special; for example, selling authentic but generic mid 19C Prussian made cavalry swords without any regimental markings / provenance as valuable US Civil War swords.

4) False provenance
This happens a lot. Swords are claimed to have been carried by certain famous officers or during important battles when they were / have not. It is so widespread that we have found examples of subterfuge in museums; of course we notified them with reasoning and, of course, they were not very happy.

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