The Martini Henry Pattern 1876 socket bayonet, officially named the “Bayonet Common Long” was nicknamed the "Lunger" by the troops. The blade is triangular with blunt edges and was purely a stabbing weapon.
P1876 bayonets were initially only marked with the War Department arrow, and Enfield inspection marks. From July 1882, the date of manufacture was added to the factory stamps. The majority of the Common bayonets were manufactured by the Royal Small Arms factory Enfield.
The black leather scabbards have brass mountings with a full-length internal spring to retain the bayonet in the scabbard and maintain the scabbards’ rigidity. The original P1876 bayonet scabbard, the approved pattern of June 1876 had three brass rivets. From July 1877, new scabbards were manufactured with only two.
The bottom rivet hole of the chape was elongated to allow the scabbard to flex when a soldier was kneeling with the bayonet fixed to their rifle.
This bayonet was made between July 1877 and July 1882, as indicated by the absence of a date mark on the bayonet and the presence of two rivets in the scabbard.
The further absence of a unit designation fits with the likelihood of this bayonet being manufactured and issued in preparation for the Anglo-Zulu War of 1879. In times of war, it was usual for items of weaponry and equipment to be issued unmarked in order to speed up the preparation and equipping of the troops.
This bayonet is in overall great condition. The steel is bright with small areas of tarnish and the mortise ring on the socket works perfectly. The scabbard is in excellent condition with all rivets present and correct and the stitching intact. The teardrop frog stud bears a weapon number, War Department arrows and Enfield inspection marks.