British 1845 Pattern Infantry Officer's Sword by Thurkle
Curved single fullered blade with spear point. Distinctive pierced gilt brass ‘Gothic’ hilt with crown and cypher of Queen Victoria within an oval, small quillon. Black leather washer. Brass ferrule, brass backstrap with chequered thumb rest and integral pommel, black shagreen grip bound with wire. Steel scabbard with two hanging rings. The blade is 32½ inches in length, 38½ inches overall.
The blade is etched on both sides with foliate motifs and the crown & cypher of Queen Victoria. The spine of the blade is etched with a centre of percussion arrow. At the ricasso on one side an etched six-pointed star surrounds the inset nickel-plated brass proof slug, which reads ‘PROVED’. On the other side the ricasso is etched with the maker’s mark ‘E THURKLE MAKER DENMARK ST SOHO LONDON’.
Established by Francis Thurkle in 1754, the firm of Thurkle was a London sword cutler managed by multiple generations of the same family. The company traded at 5 Denmark Street, Soho from 1876 to 1899, which allows us to date this sword to between 1876 and 1892, when a new pattern of infantry sword was introduced.
The blade is bright with a mirror polish, a few spots of frosting and light patination. Its edge is unsharpened with a few light dings. The hilt retains only very small areas of its original gilding, the exposed brass has an even patina. The wire binding of the grip is fully intact and tight, the shagreen of the grip has light handling wear and some scattered scale loss. Very slight movement to the grip in the hand. The scabbard has some spots of light pitting towards the throat and a few small, shallow dents towards the chape.