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Silver Piha-Kaetta

Place of Origin: Ceylon (Sri Lanka)

Date: 18th Century

Overall Length: 295mm (11.614 Inches)

Reference: 370

Status: Available

Full Description:

Though belonging to the same weapon-type as the previous entry in this catalogue, the present example shows the more typical use of two grip scales made from horn to secure the tang. These have been carved throughout with a dense variety of liya-pata patterns (the elongating scrolls which issue outwards at the edges of the scales), and the silver mounts – including pommel-cap and bolster – are all decorated en suite. A liya-vela motif (a Singhalese decorative pattern which comprises a repeating sequence of flowers and foliage) is etched over the forte’s lower tier, the blade then continuing to an acute and very slightly recurved point. The blade is complete with its silver-covered fluted wooden scabbard.

A dagger similar to the present example was published in Runjeet Singh, Arms, Armour & Works of Art – London 2019, Cat. No. 7.[1] This in turn reveals another useful comparandum preserved in the Clive Collection at Powis Castle,[2] which shows the same meticulous craftsmanship applied to the throat-piece of its scabbard.


[2] See Mildred Archer, Christopher Rowell & Robert Skelton, Treasures from India (The Clive Collection at Powis Castle), Herbert Press / National Trust, 1987, p. 44, No. 24. See also:


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