This week’s find is this beautiful yet lethal Ottoman Yatağan from the 19th century.
It is going under the hammer at Tajan Paris, Oriental Art auction on November 16, with a price estimate of €600-800.
69 cm. long, this elegant blade has an engraved silver plated sheath, decorated with trophies and flowers.
First examples descending from the 16th century, Yatagan is a type of a single-edged Turkish “saldırma” blade, formed with a slightly curved body, lending it a power focus on the sharp endpoint. Although it carries eastern ornamentation, the inspiration behind it is the Roman gladius blade. Shorter and much lighter than a sword, yatagans were fatal when aimed at the neck region, the weak point of European armors at the time.
They were popular with the Janissaries, the elite Ottoman infantry and all Balkan armies of the 18th and 19th century. One of the earliest and most splendid examples of this type of blade was the one made for Suleiman the Magnificent, who ruled the Ottoman Empire between 1520-1566, and it is now exhibited in the treasury room of Topkapi Palace Museum, Istanbul.
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