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Old 31st January 2021, 04:09 PM   #1
RSWORD
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Default Indian sword stamp seeking translation assistance

The sword stamp on this Indian sword seems nice and clear and appears to be Arabic script. Would love any translation assistance that might be provided to learn more about this sword.
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Old 2nd February 2021, 04:43 PM   #2
Jim McDougall
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Rick, I've been hoping someone might offer translating assist, but not so I guess. From what I know on these Indian tulwars, that cartouche placed in this location on Indian tulwar blades seems to be found on examples from the northwest. As such the ones I have seen were suggested to be in Urdu, however I don't know if translatable.
I have always wondered if these were either some sort of talismanic symbol (rather like a buduh) or possibly an armory (info on these is scant at best).
It is not a makers mark.

In Rawson, there is a tulwar which has this type mark in this configuration, and once had an 18th century tulwar blade with it, along with a trisula in the blade center. That cartouche was Urdu but never translated.
Another example tulwar, had this cartouche in same spot, and the blade center mark was a katar.

Perhaps these were some type of talismanic or quality device, which were sometimes accompanied by a device in the central part of the blade for other purpose augmenting the cartouche.

Not much help, but an idea of possible meanings in the mysteries of the auspicious affectations on Indian arms.
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Old 7th February 2021, 03:05 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
Rick, I've been hoping someone might offer translating assist, but not so I guess. From what I know on these Indian tulwars, that cartouche placed in this location on Indian tulwar blades seems to be found on examples from the northwest. As such the ones I have seen were suggested to be in Urdu, however I don't know if translatable.
I have always wondered if these were either some sort of talismanic symbol (rather like a buduh) or possibly an armory (info on these is scant at best).
It is not a makers mark.

In Rawson, there is a tulwar which has this type mark in this configuration, and once had an 18th century tulwar blade with it, along with a trisula in the blade center. That cartouche was Urdu but never translated.
Another example tulwar, had this cartouche in same spot, and the blade center mark was a katar.

Perhaps these were some type of talismanic or quality device, which were sometimes accompanied by a device in the central part of the blade for other purpose augmenting the cartouche.

Not much help, but an idea of possible meanings in the mysteries of the auspicious affectations on Indian arms.
Hi Jim,

Thank you for the comments. I think these stamps can be all of the above. I have examples that have been able to be translated which provided a date. I think some could have been devout markings to infuse the sword with blessings from above. And I think some markings could represent a particular armory. In this example, the stamp is fairly clear and looks like an inscription so I remain hopeful that someone will see this and be able to provide a translation. Perhaps it will give us more insight into the sword and as you suggest point its origin to the NW.
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Old 7th February 2021, 07:04 PM   #4
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I think this contains a form of the ubiquitous legend

banda-yi shah-i vilayat ...

'Slave of the King of Trusteeship (i.e. 'Ali)', found in association with the name of one of the Safavid Shahs.

As I'm sure you know these were found on numerous swords, most often anachronistically, over a period of hundreds of years from both Iran and India, sometimes along with attributions to Asadallah Isfahani or Kalb-'Ali. I do not think the person who made this knew what he was copying however as some of the letters are joined up oddly and there is missing the name of one of the shahs which you would normally expect.

I would need to see the inscription more closely but I think you can see at the bottom most clearly the word بنده (banda), above this you can see the یت (yat) of the word vilayat, the لا (la) of which is at the end of the next line up, oddly joined to what looks as though it should have been the word شاه (shah). The letter و (v) of the word vilayat is above this.

If this is correct, then the form in which it appears is different to that on most swords were it is clearly legible, inlaid rather than stamped, and in conjunction with the name of one of the shahs.
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Old 7th February 2021, 09:17 PM   #5
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I may be barking up the wrong tree, but is that not a very small trisula in the point of the cartouche? I wonder if this is not a hybrid stamp made by a Hindu artisan/for a Hindu patron but inspired partly by Islamic designs. I have seen stamped, Devanagari inscriptions that have been purposely made to resemble Persian inscriptions before, but do not ask me where ...
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Old 10th February 2021, 01:30 AM   #6
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Hi Kwiatek,

Thank you for having a look and providing some very helpful information. I'll see if I can get a better picture of the stamp and maybe a good close up of the upper half and lower half and see if that helps any. I'll also take a good hard look and see if I see a trisula.
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