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Old 16th February 2020, 09:23 PM   #1
josh stout
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Default Chinese translation help cutlass length saber

These are closeups from the cutlass length saber I posted. Please help with translation if possible. I think the characters give a reign mark, but unfortunately they were lacquered over, and are difficult to decipher. I will try and do a rubbing and see if that helps. It looks like the pommel was refit to tighten it up, probably when it was lacquered.
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Old 16th February 2020, 09:38 PM   #2
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So the second picture down with the black lacquer and the two characters says "Da Qing", (i.e. "The Great Qing"). The two characters in the picture above that should give the emperor's name. Could it be Tongzhi? The inlay work has me stumped.
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Old 16th February 2020, 11:20 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by josh stout
The inlay work has me stumped.

Lower character is "zhou" 州 - prefecture, province, administrative division (in old China).
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Old 17th February 2020, 04:05 AM   #4
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I am impressed.
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Old 17th February 2020, 11:56 AM   #5
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Decrypted the first character, that's what I got 邠州 Binzhou (the name of the county located in the western part of Shaanxi Province, in 1913 renamed Binxian County 邠 县)
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Old 17th February 2020, 04:17 PM   #6
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Impressed even more.
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Old 17th February 2020, 05:03 PM   #7
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Such exercises are better prevention of dementia than solving crosswords
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Old 17th February 2020, 05:52 PM   #8
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Because I do not know Chinese, I am forced to limit my defences to NYT mini crosswords:-(((

Dementia looms....
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Old 17th February 2020, 08:43 PM   #9
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Ren Ren,


I too am very impressed:-).
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Old 22nd February 2020, 05:35 PM   #10
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Thanks so much for your help. These might be better photos.

I have not succeeded yet with rubbings, but have manipulated the photos as best I can. If possible, please translate the lower character (not sure what it is?) Anything that can be deciphered would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 22nd February 2020, 09:23 PM   #11
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I was really happy to help you. And I will continue to do what is in my power.
The character in the photo below is similar to an imitation of a traditional Chinese seal - a square in which four characters are inscribed. The bottom two are similar to 州邠 Binzhou - the same inlay work on the blade, but in a mirror image (the usual order on old Chinese seals and many other inscriptions).
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Old 22nd February 2020, 10:07 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by josh stout
So the second picture down with the black lacquer and the two characters says "Da Qing", (i.e. "The Great Qing"). The two characters in the picture above that should give the emperor's name. Could it be Tongzhi?

It looks like you were right.
大清道光卜 "Da Qing Dao Guang bu" - "The Great Qing Dynasty Emperor Tao Guang granted [this sword]" ("Dao Guang" reign period 1821-1850).
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Old 23rd February 2020, 10:31 AM   #13
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我不懂中文

(Wǒ b dǒng zhōngwn)

Nice to have someone here who can.
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Old 23rd February 2020, 10:37 AM   #14
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谢谢! xixie! Thank you!
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Old 23rd February 2020, 06:07 PM   #15
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Thank you all so much! A dated Chinese saber from a specific region is wonderful to find. I have been looking at it for years, and finally got around to posting it.

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Old 24th February 2020, 06:47 AM   #16
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The work is not finished It remains to decipher the two characters from the square stamp.
Perhaps this will be curious. While translating, I learned that in 1795 Binzhou County received a special management status from the Emperor. He reported directly to the governor of Shaanxi Province, bypassing the entire complex provincial hierarchy of government. It seems that this district was important, because this rule was valid until 1913.
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Old 24th February 2020, 12:12 PM   #17
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How about a picture of the entire sword?
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Old 3rd March 2020, 06:20 PM   #18
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Finally got around to it.

As you can see, it is a wide bladed militia weapon. It has a feel like an oxtail dao, and a shape similar to some versions of the much heavier dadao.

It is interesting to think of this example having something like a "license", carved into its handle. The workmanship is very professional and solid with a tight grain and no forging flaws. My overall impression is that it is better quality than arms made in smaller villages.
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Last edited by josh stout : 3rd March 2020 at 06:31 PM.
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