Peruvian M1935 Bayonet, by FN Herstal
Single fullered spear pointed knife blade, steel hilt with muzzle ring and protruding rivets, wood scale grips attached by two screws, steel beaked pommel with locking button. Steel scabbard painted black with frog hook and ball finial, brown leather frog.
The end of the pommel is stamped with the serial number ‘27955’.
The Czech-designed vz. 24, or M1924, rifle was a derivative of the M1898 Mauser rifle that could be chambered in multiple calibres depending on customer demand, making it a very popular export product: it went through several iterations and was sold to many countries but particularly to South America, featuring heavily in local conflicts of the 1920s and ‘30s such as the Chaco War and Ecuadorian–Peruvian War.
The Peruvians initially purchased 5,000 vz. 32 short rifles and bayonets (an internally reworked version of the vz. 24) from the Czech factory at Brno, which they called the Modelo 1932, but when in 1935 they wished to make a larger order for 30,000 more short rifles they went instead to the Belgian firm FN Herstal, who produced for them a rifle and bayonet similar to their previous order but further customised to their specifications: a Belgian-made Peruvian-style clone of a Czech gun based on a German gun. In service this was called the Fusil Corto Peruano Modelo 1935. The bayonets made for these rifles are copies of the Czech design but with the blade oriented edge-down. They are all completely unmarked apart from their distinctive 5-digit serial number stamped on the end of the pommel.
The blade retains almost all of its original parkerised finish, with some wear on raised edges revealing bright steel, light patination in places. The hilt and pommel similarly had a blued finish, which has mostly rubbed to expose steel. Some denting to the wood grips and the end of the pommel. The scabbard has almost all its gloss black paint, with a little chipping in places such as the finial and frog stud. The leather of the frog is in good condition with no loss of stitching.