From the collection of: Rob Green

Attribution

Likely early to mid 20th century - perhaps Mandara region?

Comments

An unusual sword of which I have only seen a few other examples. This particular sub style of takouba seems to be characterized by the hilt, with a flat, iron pommel and leather wrapped guard and grip. The grip furnished with lizard or snake skin. The leather work on the guard is particularly interesting, seeming in decorative form to most closely resemble the brass guard decoration of a Nupe sword I have.

The blade is of native manufacture with a single fuller, likely an imitation of German import blades but in this case marked with the typical two half moon marks. In this case purely symbolic and hammered in somewhat crudely. This is quite common on swords of later periods as the mark became simply about the form and tradition. The stridations on the edge of the blade seem to be another typical element of this particular takouba sub style and resemble closely the decorative marks often seen on Hausa and Mandara arm daggers.

An interesting and unusual takouba and a nice change from the typical Tuareg style sword.

Measurements

sword length : 35 inches / 89cm
scabbard length : 28 inches / 71cm
guard : 4.25 inches / 11cm (approx)
pommel : 2.5 inches (oval)
central fuller : 8.5 inches