Scythian Long Iron Dagger
- Dated: 4th-3rd century B.C.E.
- Place of Origin: Black Sea region
- Medium: iron
- Measurements: L. 17 1/8 in. (44 cm)
The dagger has a double-edged blade, typically formed crosspiece and a wide tang with lateral grooves and wide pommel.
- The Scythians were Iranic equestrian tribes who were mentioned as inhabiting large areas in the central Eurasian steppes starting with the 7th century BCE up until the 4th century AD.
- Their territories during the Iron Age were known to classical Greek sources as “Scythia”. Their historical appearance coincided with the rise of equestrian semi-nomadism from the Carpathian Mountains of Europe to Mongolia in the Far East during the 1st millennium BCE.
- The “classical Scythians” known to ancient Greek historians were located in the northern Black Sea and fore-Caucasus region. However, other Scythian groups encountered in Near Eastern and Achaemenid sources existed in Central Asia.
- Moreover, the term “Scythian” is also used by modern scholars in an archaeological context, i.e. any region perceived to display attributes of the “Scytho-Siberian” culture.
Sword of Dara Shikoh
- Dated: 1640-1641
- Place of Origin: Lahore, Pakistan
- Medium and Techniques: watered steel; gold; enamel; wood; velvet
- Measurements: overall length: 85.1 cm, blade length: 71.7 cm, scabbard length: 73.8 cm
- Marks and inscriptions: In tegh-e shahzada-i Dara Shokuh/Kar-i hazar khasm ba yekdam konad tamam
The very fine watered steel blade of this sword is inscribed on the back of the blade with a Persian inscription inlaid in gold stating that it belonged to the Mughal prince Dara Shokuh (1615-1659), the son and preferred successor of the emperor Shah Jahan (r. 1628-1658).
The verses may be translated as: "This sword (tigh) of the prince called Dara Shokuh/Takes care of a thousand enemies at one go". When Shah Jahan fell ill in 1658, another son, Aurangzeb, usurped the throne, had Dara Shokuh killed during a fierce war of succession and declared himself emperor with the title ‘Alamgir.
The blade is also inlaid on one side with a gold parasol signifying its royal ownership. The sword must have been made in a court workshop, perhaps in Lahore which was a traditional centre of weapons production. A date is stamped on one side of the blade near a forte. The third digit is indistinct, but is probably ‘5’, making the date 1050 AH, or 1640-41.
Source: Copyright 2013 © V&A Images
JIMMY THE OVERDRAMATIC DRAMA QUEEN NECROMANCER SAYS, “GO AWAY! JUST GO AWAY! I WANT TO BE ALONE!”
Can anyone make out the artist’s sig there? I’m having difficulty reading it, even zoomed in.
A rather frightening African sword, name unknown to me.Never sure how much African weapons are just for show.
Apparently it’s actually dagger-sized, as per this, and from South Sudan.
Illustration from “The Tower of the Elephant”, Stephen Fabian
Found via Ben L on Google+.
Detail of a yataghan blade showing three bands of pattern-welding (18th or 19th Century)
I know jack about Silent Hill (spooky video game! Supposedly really bad movie! Pyramid Head is creepy!) but some of these visuals look really handy for monster inspiration. The Armless Man and the Creeper in particular.
Picatrix (The Aim of the Sage)
al-Majriti, Maslamati ibn Ahmad
The Ghâyat al-Hakîm fi’l-sihr, or Picatrix, as it is known in the West, is an important Arabic magical text. It is perhaps the largest and most comprehensive of the grimoires, or handbooks of magic. The attribution to the Andalusian mathematician al-Majriti (or al-Madjriti) (d. ca. 1004-7) is considered pseudo-epigraphic. The Latin translation dates to 1256 and the court of Alphonso the Wise, king of Castille, and exerted a considerable influence on Western magic thereafter. It is said that much of Ficino’s astrological magic derives from the Picatrix (see I.P.Couliano, Eros and Magic in the Renaissance, University of Chicao Press, 1987, p. 118). The Picatrix is mentioned by Johannes Trithemius in Book 2 of his notorious Steganographia (1500) and in his Antipalus Maleficiorum (c. 1500). One copy (British Library, Sloane manuscript 3679) passed down from Simon Forman (d. 1611) to Richard Napier (d. 1634) to Elias Ashmole (d. 1692) to William Lilly (d. 1681).
E.M. Butler wrongly associates it with Gio. Peccatrix, (no doubt a pseudonym) who edited an Italian version of the Key of Solomon (British Library, Sloane manuscript 1307). Misled by some comments by Mathers and others, Dr. Butler incorrectly concluded that the Picatrix was “an Italian edition of the Clavicle, strongly impregnated with black elements” (Ritual Magic, 1949, p. 135.)
OH HELL FUCKING YES.
Zhangye Danxia landform in Gansu, China
The rainbow formation is the result of red sandstone and mineral deposits being laid down for over 24 million years, according to the Telegraph.
- Dated: 1773 B.C.E. — 1650 B.C.E. (13th Dynasty; Middle Kingdom)
- Culture: Egyptian
- Medium: blade - copper alloy; handle - bronze inlaid with wood and ivory
- Measurements: overall length, 25.8 cm with a width of 4.9 cm
- Dated: 1773 B.C.E. — 1650 B.C.E.
- Culture: Egyptian
- Medium: handle of bone inlay; blade, copper alloy; bronze
- Measurements: overall length, 22 cm with a width of 5.3 cm