A Fine Silver-Mounted Presentation Sabre
Lot 353Y
A Fine Silver-Mounted Presentation Sabre
Sold for £15,600 (US$ 24,410) inc. premium

Lot Details
A Fine Silver-Mounted Presentation Sabre
Retailed By Oliphant & Son, London, London Silver Hallmarks, Maker's Mark Probably Of Thomas Shekleton, Dated 1811
With curved fullered single-edged blade (some wear and areas of rust patination) with false double edge towards the point and etched over its entire length on one side with a classical warrior, the figure of Justice, a trophy of arms, and scrolls bearing the inscription 'Portugal 16 January 1811', all against a ground of flowering scrolling foliage, and on the other with the figure of Victory beyond a trophy of arms and the presentation inscription (partly obscured), also against a ground of flowering scrolling foliage, the stirrup hilt of cast and chased silver, comprising rounded langets each chased with a differing trophy of arm against a finely punched ground, downscrolled rear quillon and knuckle-guard (old repair at the base) formed as oak foliage, lion-mask pommel with partly scaled back-piece cast and chased with acanthus centred on a roundel, and partly chequered swelling ivory grip (minor chips), in its original wooden scabbard covered in black shagreen with large shaped border engraved locket, chape and suspension mount each with an applied medallion on both sides against an engraved martial trophy, the medallions cast and chased respectively with Hercules and the Nemean lion, the figure of Victory and the figure of Justice, each against a finely punched ground, the locket signed within a roped cartouche against a trophy of arms on the inside, the chape with drag formed as a serpent, and with two fixed rings for suspension each on a scrolled foliate mount
74.5 cm. blade

Footnotes

  • Provenance:
    The recipient and thence by descent

    The presentation inscription reads: 'Presented by the Officers of the 2nd Battn 66 Regt to Major Kelly 4th Ceylon Corps (their late Commanding Officer) as a Mark of their Highest Respect and Esteem.' and 'Portugal 16 January 1811'

    Richard Kelly entered the army as a Lieutenant in the 41st Foot on 12 January 1799. He was placed on half-pay after the Peace of Amiens in 1802 and when war broke out again he was posted to the 67th Regiment. After raising a company of men, mainly from his father's tenancy in Ireland, he was gazetted as Captain in the 2nd Battalion, the 66th Regiment. On arrival in Portugal in 1809 the battalion only had one Field officer and when he was wounded at the Douro command fell to Kelly as senior Captain, a rank he retained for nearly two years. He lead the 66th into action at Talavera where he was wounded and received the Gold Medal
    He was recommended for a 'substantive Majority' for his actions and was posted to the 4th Ceylon Regiment- much to his regret. However, he stayed with the 66th Regiment until early 1811 and therefore saw action at the Lines of Torres Vedras and the Battle of Busaco. It was on leaving the regiment that his fellow officers presented him with this sword
    He was brevetted as Lieutenant-Colonel in 1815 and after distinguishing himself in the suppression of the Kanyan rebellion he transfered to the 83rd Regiment. Unfortunately he failed to survive until 1847 and so did not receive a three bar Military Service Medal

    For more information regarding the firm of Oliphant see Leslie Southwick, London Silver-Hilted Swords ..., 2001, p. 189
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