Scarce 1900 Pattern Royal Navy Cutlass

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James B
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Scarce 1900 Pattern Royal Navy Cutlass

Post by James B » Sun Jun 30, 2019 6:51 pm

Hello again,

Does anybody have a experience with late Naval cutlass's?

I have had a brief look online and can online find a couple of small mentions on websites and an identification forum, which informs a little but not to a satisfactory level.

If anyone has any knowledge of this/similar Naval cutlass's it would be most appreciated.

I picked this up at a car boot sale of all places along with an 1896 (model) Swedish bayonet...

Out of interest, does anybody know the going rate of one of these?

Thanks,

James
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James B
Posts: 15
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Re: Scarce 1900 Pattern Royal Navy Cutlass

Post by James B » Sun Jun 30, 2019 6:54 pm

I have found a picture of these cutlass's in use in a cutlass drill circa 1900.

According to a member on another forum these cutlass's were used in "formed bodies of RN personnel who were armed with them, in addition to firearms, during the relief of Peking".
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Chris A
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Location: Surrey

Re: Scarce 1900 Pattern Royal Navy Cutlass

Post by Chris A » Mon Jul 01, 2019 11:28 am

Will no doubt be in Swords for Sea Service.

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Matt Easton
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Re: Scarce 1900 Pattern Royal Navy Cutlass

Post by Matt Easton » Mon Jul 08, 2019 12:07 am

James B wrote:
Sun Jun 30, 2019 6:54 pm
I have found a picture of these cutlass's in use in a cutlass drill circa 1900.
I'm afraid not - look at the guards and rear quillons. Those are 1859 cutlass bayonets.
Matt Easton
Easton Antique Arms - http://www.antique-swords.co.uk
Schola Gladiatoria - http://www.fioredeiliberi.org

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Matt Easton
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Re: Scarce 1900 Pattern Royal Navy Cutlass

Post by Matt Easton » Mon Jul 08, 2019 12:10 am

James B wrote:
Sun Jun 30, 2019 6:51 pm

Does anybody have a experience with late Naval cutlass's?
Hi James, what experience or information are you looking for exactly? I've owned every major pattern of British cutlass at some point, I think, and I instruct people in Victorian sabre and cutlass drill.
Matt Easton
Easton Antique Arms - http://www.antique-swords.co.uk
Schola Gladiatoria - http://www.fioredeiliberi.org

James B
Posts: 15
Joined: Sun Jun 02, 2019 5:54 pm

Re: Scarce 1900 Pattern Royal Navy Cutlass

Post by James B » Tue Jul 09, 2019 11:47 pm

Hi Matt,
Matt Easton wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 12:10 am
James B wrote:
Sun Jun 30, 2019 6:51 pm

Does anybody have a experience with late Naval cutlass's?
Hi James, what experience or information are you looking for exactly? I've owned every major pattern of British cutlass at some point, I think, and I instruct people in Victorian sabre and cutlass drill.
My mistake :o , I was looking through some images on Google and found something which looked vaguely similar (without paying too much attention), saw that the uniform's looked late Victorian and joined the dots together. Now I have actually had a proper look at the picture I realise that the guards are different and that the quillons are visible (especially the left hand one).

There are a couple of questions I have:

I have heard that these were considered obsolete before they were even issued, if so what would there uses of been? (other than filling wall space and a drill weapon), purely a 'back-up' weapon. Under an Admiralty Order of 22nd October 1936 it is ordered that the cutlass is no longer to form part of the equipment of men in service. It was retained merely for ceremonial parades and a few were kept in each ship for this purpose, I presume that the 1900 pattern was phased out around this time?

What would a late Victorian cutlass drill consist of?

Are there any records of these being used in action?

I watch your Youtube videos regularly, good stuff. You have done what must be nearing a dozen videos on bayonets, it would be great (in my opinion at least) if you could explore some of the quirky and un-usual patterns of bayonet (say the 1879 Pattern Artillery Saw Back, Brunswick bayonet, Jacobs bayonet and the 1841 Sappers & Miners sword bayonet to name a few.

Thanks,

James

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Matt Easton
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Re: Scarce 1900 Pattern Royal Navy Cutlass

Post by Matt Easton » Sat Jul 13, 2019 7:39 am

HI James, I agree I should do more videos on bayonets! They are so important to military history, they probably deserve more attention. Unfortunately I don't have many bayonets and I really think it's important to show them with the matching rifles, which I also don't own. But I do have an SMLE and Enfield P53, so there are more bayonet videos I can do.
Regarding the 1900P cutlass, I would not say that it was obsolete when it was introduced exactly. Cutlasses were used rarely after 1900, but people then did not know that was going to be the case. Hand weapons saw some use in the Boxer Rebellion, 2nd Boer War, WW1 of course etc. But cutlasses didn't get much of a look in. Off the top of my head, I have heard that cutlasses were used in a few instances of boarding in WW2 (Mers El Kebir?). But the point is that hand weapons, certainly in 1900 and through WW1, were still treated as actual weapons and however infrequently they were used, they were prepared to be used.
I'm afraid that I don't don't which cutlass drill they were using in 1900. I seem to recall that there is an 1880s update to the 1859 drill and they were probably still using that. Singlestick competitions in the Navy outlasted those in the Army and I believe that they were still occasionally doing Cutlass Drill until the 1950s.
Matt Easton
Easton Antique Arms - http://www.antique-swords.co.uk
Schola Gladiatoria - http://www.fioredeiliberi.org

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