A very rare Ottoman Tombak shield (kalkan), Turkey, late 16th-early 17th century. Estimate £40,000-60,000.

LONDON.- A very rare gilt copper Ottoman Tombak shield from the late 16th century is among the highlights of an auction of Antique Arms, Armour and Militaria in London on Wednesday, June 29, 2011. The sale will be held at midday by Thomas Del Mar Ltd (in association with Sotheby’s) at their saleroom at 25 Blythe Road, W14.

The circular Turkish ribbed shield is decorated with stylised tulip flowers and is estimated to fetch £40,000-60,000. Known as a Kalkan, very few of this type of shield is recorded and therefore it is assumed that they were intended for individuals of high rank. This example is believed to have been taken from the Turks at the Siege of Vienna in 1529 and it was loaned to an exhibition in 1890 from a European Private collection. It is made of Tombak (gilt copper) – a prized material among Turkish people.

Elsewhere in the sale, a historically important flag-pole from the residence of General Gordon of Khartoum is estimated at £1,000-1,500. 

The sale includes more than 200 swords which originate from all corners of the globe including Japan, India, Persia, Italy, Scotland, France, England, America and Turkey. A Fine Russian presentation sword that was given to Sir Roderick Impey Murchison, dated 1847 is expected to fetch £8,000-12,000. The sword is decorated with gold inlaid Cyrillic inscriptions including Sir Roderick’s initials. Murchison was born in Scotland in 1792 and joined the army at the age of 16-years, he took a strong interest in the new science of geology and travelled extensively, becoming the President of the Geological Society in 1831. He received numerous honours in later life including the orders of St Anne and Stanislaus by Tsar Nicholas I, and at least 15 geographical locations around the world are named after him including the Murchison crater on the moon!



A Fine Russian presentation sword to Sir Roderick Impey Murchison, dated 1847. Estimate £8,000-12,000.

Other swords of note included a Brunswick state two-hand processional example of the Guard of Julius, Duke of Brunswick, dated 1574, which carries an estimate £10,000-15,000. This is one of almost 50 lots in the sale that were formerly in the Hanovarian Royal Collection.




A Brunswick state two-hand processional sword of the guard of Julius Duke of Brunswick and Lüneburg in Wolfenbüttel (1528-89), No. 146, dated 1574. Estimate £10000-15000

Another interesting piece from the collection is an 18-bore Royal Hanoverian percussion sporting rifle made for George IV – who was both King of Great Britain and Ireland and King of Hanover. Dating from 1820, the rifle is estimated at £4,000-6,000.


An 18-bore Royal Hanoverian percussion sporting rifle made for George IV , King of Great Britain and Ireland, King of Hanover (1762-1830), by Tanner in Hanover, the barrel signed Stoermer Fofrustmeister, circa 1820. Estimate £4,000-6,000



The final section of the sale is devoted to European and American firearms. A fine cased pair of 28-bore percussion duelling pistols in their original wooden box with accessories by Birmingham-maker Westley Richards, dating from approximately 1840 is expected to fetch £13,000-18,000, while a fine pair of 38-bore Silesian flintlock holster pistols, circa 1680-1700 made of figured walnut and engraved with mother-of-pearl masks is estimated at £10,000-15,000.




A fine cased pair of 28 bore percussion duelling pistols by Westley Richards 170 New Bond street, London, Birmingham proof marks, circa 1840. Estimate £ 13000 - 18000

VIEWING:  Sunday, June 26 - 12 noon to 4pm - Monday, June 27 - 10am to 7pm - Tuesday, June 28 - 10am to 5pm