Siamese Type 46 Bayonet
Single-edged, fullered knife blade, steel hilt with muzzle ring, wood scale grips secured by two rivets, steel pommel. Blued steel scabbard with frog hook.
The ricasso is stamped with Thai script ‘ร,ศ,๑๒๑’, which translates to ‘R,S,121’. This means Year 121 of the Rattanakosin Sok, the era proclaimed by King Rama V in 1889 to have begun in 1781, the year in which his great-great-grandfather Rama I acceded to the throne and Rattanakosin (now called Bangkok) became the nation’s capital. RS121 is therefore 1903 in the Gregorian calendar, the bayonets were produced until 1908 but all were stamped with the date of the model’s adoption.
These bayonets were produced in Japan for the Siamese military and fit the Siamese Type 46 rifle. Seeking to modernize its military at the turn of the 20th century to stave off colonial powers, Siam managed to buy a license to build Mauser's Gewehr 98 rifle. Since it lacked the manufacturing capability, the actual production was contracted out to Japan's Koishikawa arsenal, which resulted in the Type 46, a rifle along the lines of the Gewehr 98 but with additional features from the Japanese Type 35 produced by the same plant. The components were assembled in Bangkok with technical assistance from the Japanese, and this may have been true of the bayonets as well, which are modified versions of the German 84/98 bayonet.