Product Description: This 2nd Model Luftwaffe Dagger is an outstanding, top quality piece, with great eye appeal. The plated blade on this one is in fantastic shape, with only normal runner marks and very slight age, and great shine. The blade ricasso is neatly etched with the “squirrel” maker mark of the firm of Carl Eickhorn in Solingen, a maker known for high quality production. The handle is beautiful, with lovely metal fittings that show eye-catching contrast between the bright highlights and darkened recesses. The grip is a beautiful, deep yellow color, and shows no chips, cracks, or other damage. The grip wire is tight. A correct Luftwaffe style aluminum portepee is tied to the grip. The portepee is complete, and shows light wear and minor fraying to the aluminum braid in some small spots. This attractive 2nd Model Luftwaffe Dagger is complete with its original scabbard. The scabbard retains good finish, and is nice and straight, with no dents. Both suspension rings are intact. This dagger is a choice example, very well-preserved, and remaining in a strong, excellent plus condition.
Historical Description: The Luftwaffe dagger was a piece of regalia with a unique history. After WWI, Germany was prohibited from having an Air Force. In 1933, the Nazis formed the Deutscher Luftsport-Verband (DLV), which was a paramilitary aviation organization. DLV officers wore a long dagger. In 1935, in violation of the Treaty of Versailles, Hitler instituted the new German armed forces, the Wehrmacht. One of the branches of the Wehrmacht was the Luftwaffe. Luftwaffe officers at this time wore what we know as the first model Luftwaffe dagger. This was a shortened version of the earlier DLV dagger. It featured a scabbard covered in blue leather, and a blue, wire-wrapped grip. The crossguard featured a round, “sunwheel” type swastika, flanked by down swept, stylized “wings.” The pommel was in the form of a vertical disc, with another, larger “sunwheel” swastika. In 1937, the Luftwaffe instituted a new dagger form, known to collectors as the second model. This new dagger was similar to that worn by officers of the German Army. The second model had a metal scabbard with impressed decoration, and no leather covering. The crossguard bore a Luftwaffe eagle, clutching a swastika. The blue grip was replaced with one that was orange, white or yellow. The various types of grips were a matter of personal preference and did not indicate branch or rank. The pommel of the new dagger featured a swastika within an oak leaves motif. The blades of these daggers were steel, and many but not all were manufacturer marked.
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