Original German WWII Hirschfänger Bone Handle Forestry Dress Cutlass by W.K.C. Waffenfabrik with Scabbard & Frog

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. In use for centuries, the German Hirschfänger (Deer Catcher) long hunting daggers have always made lovely display pieces, as well as military sidearms. Many of the early bayonets used by the various German States were based on the Hirschfänger design, which is both simple and elegant, almost a short sword in practical terms.

The Hunting and Forestry organizations under the German monarchy were often controlled by aristocrats and well-heeled businessmen. They were generally not organizations inhabited by the common man. The purposes were generally formed for the conservation of game and forestry. Elaborate hunts were great occasions for the well-heeled, while the ladies used the hunting lodges for match-making and gossip. The cutlasses of these Imperial organizations were often extremely ornate, or they could also be utilitarian, made to perform the final killing thrust on game. Both types were often owned by a single individual. Many examples were used strictly for dressing up the beauty of a hunting/forestry uniform.

This is a fantastic WWII German Hirschfänger Bone Handled Long Forestry Cutlass by the legendary firm of W.K.C. Waffenfabrik GmbH, previously known as Weyersberg Kirschbaum & Companie. It comes complete with its original scabbard, as well as a leather hanger frog. The hilt is fit with brass, original gilt but now mostly worn, and has a lovely slightly curved white bone grip. This is fitted with three brass acorn & oak leaf ornaments on each side, some of which are slightly loose. Instead of the "S" shaped crossguard with opposed Deer's hoof finials, this grip is "sword" style, and has a hand guard, which terminates in a Deer's hooves at the crossguard and where it meets the grip. There is also a beautiful scallop shell guard on one side, much like those seen on earlier "hunting sword pistols", which in this case actually looks quite like an actual scallop.

The lovely triple etched blade is still straight, free of major damage and shows only very minor staining and wear. The blade has no post manufacture sharpening to the blunt edge, and these originally were generally intended for thrusting, to finish off their wounded catch. The etched panels on the sides of the blade are simply breathtaking, with one side showing a forest scene with three does followed by a buck. The other side shows two foxes being tracked by a hound, and there are game fowl to the right of this close to the blade tip. The panels are surrounded by lovely foliate engraving, and the spine of the blade has a lovely oak leaves and acorn leaf motif running up the back, a classic German design. The etching is very well retained, though cleaning has made the darkened background a bit faint. The leather blade buffer is still present, and in very good shape.

This great example was made by W.K.C. Waffenfabrik GmbH of Solingen, the legendary "City of Blades" in western Germany. The reverse ricasso is etched with the trademark "Knights-Head" (Ritter-helm) logo of legendary maker Weyersberg Kirschbaum & Cie of Solingen, over the firms initials of W K C. This company is a famous manufacturer of military swords and cutlery in Solingen, Germany - a city famous since the middle ages for its metal-working and craftsmanship in sword making. Per J. Anthony Carter's fine work GERMAN SWORD AND KNIFE MAKERS, the traditional manufacturing of swords at WKC dates back to the year 1774 when the Weyersberg first registered the ''Kings head'' as their trademark. Later in 1883 the company merged with the Kirschbaums and the company Weyersberg Kirschbaum & Cie was formed, which continued into the Weimar Period. It then rebranded as W.K.C. Waffenfabrik GmbH, and produced many edged weapons during the NSDAP Period. The company is still in operation today.

The leather scabbard is fitted with gilt brass, with an acorn frog button, as often seen. The black patent leather is in good shape, without any bending or major issues with the finish. The gilding has worn away due to cleaning, which is not uncommon. The scabbard is held in a very nice leather frog, which was intended to clip onto a hanger attached to the belt or uniform of the owner.

A magnificent German upmarket Hirschfänger Hunting Association cutlass by a famous Solingen maker. Ready to display!

Blade Length: 13"
Blade Style: Hirschfänger w/out Fuller
Overall length: 17 5/8”
Handguard: 4 1/4" L x 4 1/2" W
Scabbard Length: 12 3/4”

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