Thumbnail 0
Thumbnail 1
Thumbnail 2
Thumbnail 3

About the work

curationist logoCurationist Object Description
This sword sports a bit of trickery. Its steel blade bears the signature of Haji Sunqur, a famous 16th century Istanbul-based swordsmith, but the blade was made in Iran, in the late 18th or early 19th century. Perhaps a subsequent owner added the signature, in an attempt to increase the sword’s value or invoke the power of the historical swordsmith. The scabbard and curved hilt were made in either Turkey or North Africa in the 19th century. Also called a pistol grip, this style was popular in the region. After Napoleon invaded Egypt in 1798, the pistol grip spread to Europe and North America. European and North American soldiers called it a “Mamluk saber.” The sword’s materials are as international as its manufacture. It contains wood, steel, gold, leather, and rhino horn, a rare material sourced from Africa or South Asia.

Metropolitan Museum of Art Object Description

Saber (Kilij) with scabbard

Work details

"--" = no data available
= Curationist added metadata(Learn more)

All Works in Curationist’s archives can be reproduced and used freely. How to attribute this Work:


Help us to improve this content!

Let our archivists know if you have something to add.

Save this work.

Start an account to add this work to your personal curated collection.

masonry card

We're just getting started!

Sign Up to receive updates.

Curationist connects people to cultural knowledge from all over the world.