Swords, Spears and Daggers

Updated November 1, 2017

Mid-20th Century Pair of Seme Short Swords

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The “seme” – also known as “simi” or “alem” is the traditional dagger or short sword that has been used by the Maasai and Kikuyu peoples of Kenya in East Africa for centuries. These are known for the distinctive leaf-shaped blade, which features a relatively rounded point.

This pair came from a collection of Detroit-area world travelers who reportedly were in the region shortly after World War II. This matched pair of seme swords measure about 20 inches and each has a 14.5 inch blade. These are complete with the scabbards, which are generally made of wood covered with rawhide, and dyed red.

These two daggers are in very good condition and could make excellent “wall hangers.” These are reasonably priced!

Price $150 plus shipping

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Unknown Spear Point #1

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Here is a mystery item – an old spear point. It is likely of African construction but I’m not 100 percent sure. It is an iron spear head where the tip has long since broken off. It measures about 28-inches is heavily rusted and the age is completely unknown. I’m guessing it dates from at least the late 19th century but it could be much older.

There isn’t much of an edge so maybe this was never finished. All in all it is an interesting piece that perhaps someone can use, and it is therefore reasonably priced.

Price $50 plus shipping

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BreakUnknown Spear Point #2

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Here is another mystery item – another spear or lance point. When and where it is from is unknown, but my guess would be Africa. It measures about 28-inches.

Price $50 plus shipping

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Two Ethnographic Items – Spear and Cane

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One more set of mystery items that came from an old collection. This includes an iron short spear that measures just over 34-inches, and a cane or scepter that is about 36-inches. The design seems similar so I’ve put these items together but these could be completely unrelated.

The spear is made of iron and is magnetic. It features a head that has a dulled point and lacks a sharp edge, but it is still a beefy item and could be a serious weapon. The cane is made of brass or perhaps bronze, and it is not magnetic. These are interesting pieces and display well together.

Price $125 plus shipping

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Syrian Khanjar Dagger

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This is a nice example of an early 20th century Syrian “Khanjar” dagger. It is mounted in engraved copper and features the typical curved blade that was popular with North African and Arabic daggers. The overall length is about 16 inches while the blade measures about 11 inches.

It has some nice patina and displays very well.

Price $125 plus shipping

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BreakTourist Trade Wooden Knife

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This one probably isn’t that old, nor is it that unique. That is also why this tourist trade item, which likely dates to the 1960s or 1970s is priced so reasonably! It measures almost 17 inches and would make a great starter piece to an ethnographic collection.

Price $15 plus shipping

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BreakEastern Pesh-Kabz Dagger

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Sometimes described as a flat top dagger, the Perso-Afghan Pesh-Kabz was designed to penetrate mail armor. Pesh-Kabz means “fore-grip” and these daggers came from Central Asia – and during the British rule in India these were sometimes called Khyber knives.

This example dates to the 19th century. The blade measures about eight inches while the overall length is about 12 inches. The handle is brass, wood and bone. It is a nice piece that could certainly make a deadly point.

Price $275 plus shipping

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Polynesian Kris with Carved Scabbard

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The kris is an iconic bladed weapon and was commonly used throughout Maritime Southeast Asia. This example features a cabochons inset in brass collar at hilt, while the handle in the form of a dancing lion. This particular kris likely dates to the end of the 19th century.

It has a blade that measures about 14 and half inches and in the scabbard is about 26 inches overall. While there is some pitting and rust to the blade, along with a few abrasions to the scabbard this is lovely example of that iconic bladed weapon. This would make a great starter piece and is therefore reasonably priced.

Price $225 plus shipping

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Ceremonial Khukuri

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I’ve seen some large khukuris over the years, but this ceremonial one features a blade that measures 23 inches long and this knife is nearly 31 inches in total length. This is no tourist item, but was rather a ceremonial item issued to a retiring soldier or other important person.

It is complete with its original leather scabbard. The age of this is unknown but it could be from the interwar era. The blade has some minor pitting but the patina is uniform. It could be cleaned up or left as is. This is a special knife and priced accordingly.

Price $250 plus shipping

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North African/Arab Dagger

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While not the most ornate dagger we’ve seen this one is rather nice. It shows some honest wear but the engraving also shows that craftsmanship went into producing this one. The blade measures just six inches, and isn’t overly sharp – but I still wouldn’t want to be on the receiving end.

The handle has some scratches and some minor damage, but all in all this is a nice wall hanger that shows character.

Price $120 plus shipping

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Masai Hunting Spear

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While any old dentist can use a rifle to take down a lion, back in the day the warriors of the Masai tribe of eastern Africa would go on hunts with little more than a big pointy stick. Here is such an example, a late 19th century hunting spear. It measures about seven feet total and features forged spear points on each end – while I wouldn’t want to face a lion with it I really know I wouldn’t want to be on the receiving end!

It is in very good shape and would make quite a point in any collection of ethnographic weapons. It is reasonably priced.

Price $195 plus shipping

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BreakCentral African Short Sword

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A simple sword from Central Africa that has the age and patina of some use. The sword blade is 19-inches in length. The edge and point are in good condition with no chips or cracks. A fuller runes about 13-inches of the length of the blade. The wood handle is simple and utilitarian, with some carved lines in the grip that give it interest.

Price $145 plus shipping

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BreakAfrican Dagger with Leather Scabbard

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An L-shaped curved blade on this dagger is likely from an African nation. A simple design with a wooden handle accented with brass, and a leather scabbard adorned with leather straps and coils is rich in history. Overall, the dagger is about 17-inches, and the blade is almost 13-inches in length. The edge and tip are in good condition, with a nice patina. The scabbard fits the blade, but is tight and the blade remains out of the scabbard.

SOLD

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BreakMiddle East African Dagger with Cowhide Scabbard

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The cowhide and leather scabbard on this dagger has withstood use and time to offer a piece of history. The 16-inch dagger has a curved, 11-inch blade. The edge and tip are intact, and the blade has a nice patina. The wooden handle has a wire-wrapped grip for better handling and aesthetics.

SOLD

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BreakAfrican Dagger Short Sword

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A menacingly hefty blade and double fuller lend an historical look to any wall or shelf. The dagger runs 20-inches in length with a wooden handle that has metal work on the grip and end. The blade runs almost 16-inches, with a good edge and tip.

Price $145 plus shipping

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BreakAfrican Dagger

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A simple design withstands the test of time. A slightly curved blade running almost 13-inches offers an impressive look. The blade has a nice patina. A few chips on the upper edge shows use. The wood handle has brass inlay detail, and fits well in the hand.

SOLD

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BreakMiddle Eastern Dagger with Ornate Handle

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This curved Middle Eastern dagger shows a North African influence with an ornate brass and stone handle. The dagger is 15-inches, and the blade is almost 10-inches in length. The blade has a nice patina, and retains its sharp edge. The point is intact and also sharp.

Price $175 plus shipping

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BreakCrudely Made Dagger of Middle Eastern Origin

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This dagger came with a grouping from a soldier returning from the Middle East. The exact origin is unknown but it seems to have a Middle Eastern design, possibly even African. It features a crudely forged blade that measures about six inches. The handle is nicely finished as is the pommel, and it has a nice aged leather scabbard.

When this blade was made is unknown, but it makes for an interesting piece and one that shows that even today these crudely made weapons are still being used. It is priced reasonably.

Price $105 plus shipping

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BreakDagger of Middle Eastern/African Origin

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Offered here is another dagger of Middle Eastern or African origin. It features a somewhat crude blade but has a nice handle with brass pommel. The scabbard is made of leather with various designs that indicate a possible Middle Eastern piece.

Given that this one is a bit of a mystery I’ve priced it accordingly for the quality and condition.

Price $105 plus shipping

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BreakCrudely Made Dagger With Crude Leather Scabbard

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This dagger was also a piece brought home by a returning veteran. The blade and scabbard show possible African or Middle Eastern design but the quality is rather crude. The leather is supple however and this would make for a nice conversation piece. Given its condition and quality it is reasonably priced.

Price $95 plus shipping

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Philippine Gunong Short Sword

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A unique short sword from the Philippines. This is a Gunong was a bladed weapon used by the Marano people of the Philippines both as a utility knife and as a thrusting weapon used for close quarter fighting.

This is a fine example with a silver plated hilt and scabbard over copper and features incised foliage decoration and stylized form with scalloped spines to each end. This Gunong sword is in excellent shape and is priced reasonably for such a fine bladed weapon.

Price $200 plus shipping

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Central African Spear

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Straight to point with this one. Here is a late 19th century African spear, likely from the Congo region. It is 57 1/2 inches in length and features a brass metal point that measures about 12 inches. Both the hardened wood shaft and metal spear head have a deep patina. The spear is in overall excellent condition. There are three neatly drilled holes in the spear, likely to mount it in a past display. It’s slender light weight suggests it is a throwing spear and few would have wanted to be on the receiving end!

Given the quality of this one it is not a tourist piece from the mid-to-late 20th century. It displays well and could be used as part of nearly any African warrior display from the colonial period. It is priced reasonably for a genuine African spear that is at least 100 years old!

Price $150 plus shipping

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