Original Victorian Zulu Wars Named Knobkierie from Rorke's Drift with Engraved Silver Plaque and Wire Wrapping
Original Item: Only one available. Once the Battle is over, the victorious have the right to stroll the field looking for spoils to bring home to remind them of their Victory. England has been full of such items but sadly in years since WW2 most everything has gone. This genuine Zulu Knobkierie is a very nice example that no doubt some young British trooper found on the battle field and brought back to England as a remembrance.
This example measures 27 1/2" overall and has a round war head of 3" in diameter. Part way up the haft is a very intricate woven wire section of copper and brass wires, and there is a larger section similarly decorated directly under the Ball war head. It looks like the central portion is in fact two smaller bands, one of which has moved from it's original location farther down the haft. Between these two sections of intricate wire decoration there is an old silver engraved shield attached to the haft stating:
- 1879 -
Lt. J. ADENDORFF
All big fans of British Empire History have seen the finest movie ever made: "ZULU" starring STANLEY BAKER and MICHAEL CAINE. The movie, made in the 1960s, covers the British Action at Rorke's Drift, in which there appears a BOER Cavalryman named ADENDORFF who was part of the NATAL NATIVE CAVALRY. Since the names were all part of the Official Victorian Military Record, it seems this particular War Club returned home with this very Officer as a reminder of the occasion. This has just come to us from an English House Sale where the deceased owner had a mass of Zulu items on display. The question we are all asking is can this really be THAT War Club recovered by THAT man?
The War Club is certainly 100% genuine and of ZULU origin from the Victorian Period. The Silver Shield is very well executed and frankly looks like many other examples of these "reminders" that we have seen or handled. This is a case of whatever the customer wants to believe. We purchased this from one of our best suppliers in England, from whom we get many of our very choice items. We believe it to be just as it appears, and there is not much more we can say regarding it. In wonderful condition, ready to display!
Hard to believe that the Zulu Native warriors destroyed most of a Regiment (24th of Foot) in 1879 being armed with clubs, spears and shields. Wonderfully recalled in the Movies ZULU and ZULU DAWN.
A Knobkierie, also spelled knobkerrie, knopkierie or knobkerry, is a form of club used mainly in Southern and Eastern Africa. Typically they have a large knob at one end and can be used for throwing at animals in hunting or for clubbing an enemy's head. The knobkierie is carved from a branch thick enough for the knob, with the rest being whittled down to create the shaft.
The name derives from the Afrikaans word knop, meaning knot or ball and the Nama (one of the Khoekhoe languages) word kierie, meaning cane or walking stick. The name has been extended to similar weapons used by the natives of Australia, the Pacific islands and other places.
Knobkieries were an indispensable weapon of war, particularly among southern Nguni tribes such as the Zulu (as the iwisa) and the Xhosa. Knobkieries was occasionally used during World War I. The weapon also being carried by British soldiers in Siegfried Sassoon's fictionalized autobiography.
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