Artifact of the Day


Chilanum (dagger)

Deccan (southern India) (late 1500s-early 1600s)

Double edge recurved blade of hollow ground section over 2/3 length with pairs of narrow axial grooves terminating in reinforced acute point. Iron hilt. Shoulders of blade encased on both sides with steel plates having pendant trefoil projections. Oval guard with dentated & perforated edges with snake-head terminals parallel to blade. Grip formed by inverted "Y" with globous swelling at center, bifurcated above with pair of recurving projections & globose terminal. Arms of hilt bent towards integral recurved knuckle guard. Decorated overall with silver & gold floral true inlay.

JLF: It seems that the "steel plates" may actually be integral to the blade, which may have been ground down to achieve this effect.