Maker: Alex Coppel
Product Description: This is a beautiful example of an Imperial Hunting Cutlass. It shows some wear, and has a nice patina, but is in excellent condition for something that is very likely over 100 years old. The blade is very nice, with only a few scattered gray spots. The blade bears a clear maker stamp for “Alex Coppel, Solingen” on the ricasso. The cast grip and crossguard on this are very intricate and detailed, and depict traditional hunting scenes. The grip shows some wear from honest use, and has a deep patina. This Imperial Hunting Cutlass is complete with its original, leather-covered scabbard. The scabbard fittings appear to be nickel silver, and have an old, pleasant patina, matching the grip fittings. The leather covering shows only minor wear. This one has a long, closely linked wire chain attached to the stud that ordinarily would have affixed this to a leather frog, in such a way that it could be used as a hanger for wear. The chain shows age and oxidation and clearly has been with this cutlass for a very long time. A very appealing example of the Imperial Hunting Cutlass, in lovely, uncleaned original condition.
Historical Description: Hunting is a sport with a long tradition in Germany. As with any long tradition, it grew to become a practice steeped in ritual. Hunters generally were members of hunting clubs and organizations, which had permission to hunt specific state-owned forests, under the auspices of forestry organizations. Both the members of the hunting clubs, and those involved in forestry, had traditional hunting clothes, a sort of regalia that by the time of the Third Reich, had evolved into a uniform. These men carried traditional hunting daggers and cutlasses as part of their regalia. These was an almost infinite variety of these edged weapons, made by many makers, and available in countless styles to suit individual preferences. Some of these hunting daggers and cutlasses were mostly utilitarian and practical, and were used for the final thrust at the close of a successful hunt. Others were ornate, with detailed ornamentation, and were used for formal and ceremonial occasions when the traditional regalia were worn. These edged weapons were expensive and very personal objects for their original owners.
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