British Naval Boarding Cutlass Pre-Revolutionary War Era
Original Item: Only One Available. First seen in the early 18th century, this is the true "Pirate Cutlass" of Legend and Movie fame. When standardization of side arms was first introduced in the early 1700s this was the basic design adopted by the British Navy, a style later to be copied by most other maritime forces including the fledgling American Navy with the Model 1797.
A wrought iron Figure of Eight guard encompassing a plain cylindrical steel grip mounted on a short curved but substantial single edged blade. Traditionally not issued with scabbards these Cutlasses were stored in racks on board ship for easy access in case of military action.
This fine example is earlier than most in that the 22.5" blade has only one blood gutter running down each side and bears an unmistakable Armorer's Mark (appears to be a running man inside a shield) is heavily stamped into the blade directly in front of the guard. The use of an Armorer's Marks was introduced in the days of Suits of Armor circa 1400 but was discontinued early in the 1700s. The Figure of Eight guard design continued until the very late 18th century and was continued, with some modification by the British in the following Cutlass Model of 1804 that also sported a ribbed steel grip with a 29" straight blade.
For further historical information see "Boarders Away" by William Gilkerson, an inspiring book!
Originally issued with bright curved blade and black painted hilt our example still retains what may very well be the original black paint and bright finish. Very seldom seen today especially with such an early outstanding Armorer's Mark.
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