British Victorian 1897 Pattern Royal Engineer Submarine Miners Sword
» British Victorian 1897 Pattern Royal Engineer Submarine Miners Sword
This Victorian Pattern 1897 officer’s sword is in fantastic condition and is marked to the Tees Division Royal Engineer Submarine Miners.
The Tees Division was a volunteer division, raised at Middlesbrough on 27th November, 1886 to cover the Tees Estuary. It was one of the most important of the UK submarine mining divisions, ranking 4th in the list. The division consisted of two companies with headquarters at Bright Street, Middlesbrough which it shared with a section of the Coast Brigade of the regular Royal Engineers. The commanding officer was Captain (later Major) John Thomas Belk.
The 818mm single edged, thrusting blade has a short central fuller on both sides with a slightly rounded spine and terminates in a spear point. The blade is in excellent condition and is etched with the winged lightning bolts of the Artillery/Engineers with the designation “Tees Division, SMRE Volunteers,” above and below. A decorative panel on the forte bears the monogram of the owner. The obverse bears the crowned royal cipher of Queen Victoria bordered by floral scrollwork and a laurel and palm wreath with the royal coat of arms above the ricasso.
The ricasso bears a brass proof disk associated with the Pillin family of sword makers. The obverse ricasso is etched with the cutler’s details, “Hobson & Sons, 1-3-5 Lexington Street. London. W.” Hobson & Sons were a known trade customer of Septimus John Pillin.
The steel bowl guard is of 1897 pattern and bears the royal cypher of Queen Victoria and a pierced foliate design. The plating is in excellent condition with some tiny spots of age related blistering. The crosshatched steel back strap has an oval pommel and rounded tang nut. The fish skin grip is in excellent condition as is the twisted wire binding. The blade is firm in the hilt.
The brown leather covered field scabbard is in very good condition and remains strong with all the stitching intact. The scabbard has minor use related scuffs and marks and is missing the frog strap. The sword sheaths and draws smoothly and is held firmly in the scabbard.
This is an excellent example of a Victorian 1897 pattern officer’s sword, monogrammed and marked to the Submarine Miners of the Royal Engineers. It is rare to find such a clean and well preserved example of a Victorian P1897.