Annee XI light cavalry sabre by Kirschbaum and Schimmelbusch (Solingen)
This Napoleonic sabre was introduced for the French light cavalry and mounted artillery in 1803, and was known as a “Sabre Cavalerie Legere Modele AN XI” – Year 11 of the Revolutionary calendar (introduced on 22nd September 1792). This was a very successful model under a number of French regimes. Most were made at Klingenthal. This is a much rarer example by Kirschbaum, Schimmelbusch & Co. in Solingen – made during the period of French control of the Rhineland Confederation, 1807-1814. Kirschbaum and Schimmelbusch are believed to have collaborated formally during the years 1807-1813. So, this example could have been at Waterloo.
This is a formidable sword and substantial in the hand – blade and hilt are clearly robust – more substantial than, for example, the British P1796 light cavalry sword. The flat, back edge has the inscription “Manufacture de Solingen K.S.& C.”. This sword has its original heavy duty steel scabbard with dual ring mounts (normally unpainted – this one has received a single coat of black paint at some point, but will come off easily).
Length: 39 1/2″ Blade: a shade under 35″ Blade width: 1 3/16″ Guard: three branch in brass, with hooked quillon Grip: wooden slabs (beech), covered in leather (this model did not have a wire wrap) and with one brass lozenge on each side of the grip (referred to by the French as half olives); clear evidence of some woodworm, but no structural damage and the grip remains strongly intact. Scabbard: plain steel and in almost perfect order – one light ding; two hanging rings.
Weight (sword): just over 2 lb Weight (scabbard): 1 lb 10 oz
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