20 Apr 2021


August 31, 2014 - Filed under: Features — David

With a number of television programmes gracing the airwaves today being aimed at collectors and fans of antiques, viewers can sometimes be spoilt for choice.

From old favourites to (more…)

August 30, 2014 - Filed under: Features — Harriet

When it comes to looking at oneself, usually only the best frame will do. While perhaps a little vain, a quality antique mirror can do much more than just feed your ego; it can also help to act as a centrepiece for a room, especially when placed above a well-adorned mantelpiece or (more…)

- Filed under: Antiques News — Mark

The owners of a New York auction house are hoping that they can secure a buyer for a local treasure to stop it from being broken up.

No date has been set for the sale yet, but an appeal has (more…)

- Filed under: Features — Harriet

As with many exciting historical periods, the Victorian age has left behind a wealth of fascinating objects. While some of these left-over antiques, such as the Bristol-docked SS Great Britain, won’t fit on the shelf of a vintage-style feature wall, there are many other historical curios to (more…)

August 29, 2014 - Filed under: Features — David

For the majority of the 19th Century, Queen Victoria sat on the throne (1837-1901) and Britain underwent a time of political and social change. This brought with it a greater diversity in the nation’s tastes and trends, with styles and inspirations drawn from across its vast empire, as well as (more…)

- Filed under: Features — Harriet

While some people like to collect teddy bears and others late Victorian furniture, others prefer their antiques to have a bit more of an edge.

A growing number of collectors are gathering an assortment of antique swords, with many hailing from the East. As such, let’s take a look at a few of the different types that are steadily being discovered in the British antique market to help cut through the matter:

The Mameluke

A curved sword made famous by the Mameluk soldiers of Egypt, after being witnessed by the Western powers during the Napoleonic Wars the Mameluke was adopted for use by European horseback warriors. This swiftly became the modern cavalry sabre that is still carried by soldiers today, even if just ceremonially.

Originally based on a Persian design, the style spread throughout the Middle East, as well as into Turkey, India and North Africa.

The talwar

Hailing from the northern regions of the subcontinent, this single-edged sword, which usually comes attached to an attractive hilt, grew in popularity during the Moghul period. It also appears to have influenced Western weapon design, with the 1796 British Pattern Light Cavalry Sabre sharing several of its characteristics.

Nowadays, they are perhaps best placed above antique coffee tables than warhorses, as they often come paired with intricately decorated scabbards.

The jian

This sword will be recognisable to some as the same sort of long, double-edged blades that were wielded by the heroes in the famous martial arts film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.

The jian has seen use in China for over 2,500 years, where it has become ingrained within the nation’s folklore. The sword is revered as one of the four major martial arms, along with the staff, spear and the sabre, where it is described as the Gentleman of Weapons.

The katana

Popular to many as the Samurai Sword, katanas have found their way into Western pop-culture through numerous movies and stories. Used by the feudal lords of Japan for numerous centuries, the long, distinctive blades have become imbued retrospectively with notions of honour and privilege.

While a number of restrictions remain in place on the katana, which can come afoul of the UK’s Offensive Weapons Order, any made in Japan before 1954 are still legal, as well as those made by traditional methods. While this means that antique collectors are in the clear, they can also be purchased by practitioners of the martial arts and historical re-enactors.

The pata

A straight, double-edged weapon that comes from Southern India, the pata is often referred to in English as a gauntlet sword. This is due to its distinctive design, which has the weapon’s handle encased in an armoured glove. This was designed to protect its user during the close-quarter fighting that categorised this period of Indian history.

Many patas have found their way into the hands of collectors, especially as many were decoratively designed for use by noblemen and Maratha officers. Perhaps, though, it would look best safely sheathed and stored within walnut bedroom furniture.

- Filed under: Antique Toys — Richard

An assortment of toy vehicles has attracted a lot of attention from collectors prior to being sold, including potential buyers from the United States.

David Harper, antiques expert and (more…)

August 28, 2014 - Filed under: Features — Mark

In Britain, we are blessed by a history that has created many fascinating objects and curios, from Royal antique coffee tables to fine porcelain, although we can often be outdone in (more…)

- Filed under: Antiques News — Richard

Television antiques specialist George Archdale and other experts will be appearing at a valuation day to raise money for the Thorpe Hall appeal.

Residents of Peterborough are invited to (more…)

August 27, 2014 - Filed under: Antiques News — Mark

A disabled man who was struggling to make ends meet is now a lot better off due to a rare Navajo item.

Big L.T., a southern California resident, lost his leg in a (more…)

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