Originally Posted by ariel
As to the swordsman in your post #5: because of the state of preservation, I cannot see the curvature:-(
But what I find even more interesting, his sword seems to have a D-guard ( my imagination?).
We believe that D-guards came to India with Europeans. But Elgood, in his Hindu book, shows stone carvings of warriors carrying D-guarded swords allegedly dated to the 11th century( p.79). One image( 8.1) shows a slightly curved blade. Elgood, being an extremely careful professional, wanted additional confirmation, preferably actual examples before correcting the history.
I see what you're looking at and it's the first time I've seen it. You got my head tilted looking at it.
But I dont think it is. Hypothetical if it is or if I find a very early sample of a hand guard it's a extreme outlier(weird outliers do exist) and made no difference to the Indian sword evolution over the years.
I would like to see the source of the 11th century examples, oldest I've seen are from the Akbar/Mughal-Deccan Sultanates-Vijayanagara. All this time the Portuguese have a strong influence on the horse trade, artillery, small firearms, and probably to an extent swords. Especially in the south in small rich port cities like Calicut and very important imperial ones like Vijayanagara. I've not found one hand guard in the southern predecessors of the Vijayanagara, Hoysalas - who are pretty much isolated from Euro, etc. contact.
So the short answer, yeah, I do believe it's a European influence as well.