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Naval officer's sword and scabbard

Object Number: 
1962.26ab
Date: 
ca. 1798
Medium: 
Steel, ivory, brass; leather, brass
Dimensions: 
Overall: 33 1/2 x 4 3/4 x 1 7/8 in. ( 85.1 x 12.1 x 4.8 cm )
Marks: 
engraved: on throat of scabbard (reverse side): "Captain Christopher R. Perry / Kingston 1798"
Description: 
Sword with curved, single-edged steel blade with a three-quarter length fuller and etched designs on obverse and reverse; brass stirrup hilt with beaded knuckle-bow and beaded branch on obverse of counter-guard (each with five beads at center) and quillon with disk finial; carved ivory grip with parallel lines running lengthwise and plain brass ferrule at base; pommel in the form of an eagle's head with open beak; leather scabbard with brass mounts consisting of a throat with oval frog stud and carrying ring, middle band with a second carrying ring, and tip without a drag; inscription engraved on reverse side of upper mount.
Gallery Label: 
The scabbard of this sword is inscribed with the name of Captain Christopher R. Perry, the location of Kingston [R.I.], and the date of 1798. A native of Rhode Island, Perry was commissioned a Captain in the U.S. Navy in June 1798. Captain Perry had five sons who became naval officers. One of them was Oliver Hazard Perry (1785-1819), hero of the 1813 Battle of Lake Erie; another was Matthew Calbraith Perry (1794-1856), who is credited with opening Japan to the West in 1854.
Credit Line: 
Gift of Mrs. August Belmont
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.
Creative: Tronvig Group