location of sword of Lord Frederick Roberts

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location of sword of Lord Frederick Roberts

Postby Anne H » Fri Feb 10, 2017 9:14 pm

Hi ~ I joined this list in the hope that someone here could advise me, as I’d like to find the
location of a ceremonial sword reputed to have been presented to Lord Frederick Sleigh Roberts
by Queen Victoria. I’d particularly love to see any paperwork relating to the sword’s design.

We have a strong family story that my great-grandfather Richard Percival Lyford (aka Percy
Lyford 1844-1912) designed this sword, and I’d love to prove/disprove this tale once and for all.
Percy was a designer so it’s not too much of a fanciful suggestion.

A relative tells me that.....date unknown but poss 1930-1950s ~ there was an exhibition at
?(Earls Court) at which some of Percy Lyford’s pieces were on display including Lord Robert’s
sword.

An elderly relative also says that during the 1940s she was taken to the Tower of London where
the sword was on display.

I cannot find a definiitive list of swords that once belonged to Lord Roberts. There is plenty of
material online about the sword presented by the boys of Eton College & the sword presented by
the people of Portsmouth, but no actual list. Does anyone know of such a thing?

Thanks for reading to this point!
regards
Anne H. in Essex UK
Anne H
 
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Re: location of sword of Lord Frederick Roberts

Postby Richard » Sat Feb 11, 2017 12:41 pm

Dear Anne
Welcome to the forum and thank you for posting such an interesting topic. Frederick Sleight Roberts was of course one of the most renowned soldiers of the Victorian age so as you say quite a lot of material about him on the internet. If he had been given a sword by Queen Victoria, you would have hoped that it would feature in a portrait but a cursory search only reveals that most portraits or photographs - three examples below - only show him carrying a standard 1831 pattern 'mameluke-hilted' General Officer's sword. I will ask around though to see if anyone knows of this presentation sword.

Slightly off topic but related, I did have a few years ago the sword in the (poor) photo below, supposedly presented by F S Roberts to H J Roberts following the siege of Lucknow. The blade etching is somewhat enigmatic and in all probability not genuine (one of my mistakes ....)

Richard
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P1010585.JPG
mw171802.jpg
Frederick_Sleigh_Roberts,_1st_Earl_Roberts_by_John_Singer_Sargent.jpg
d0507e72e9890bd28cd1c956e5726b07.jpg
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Re: location of sword of Lord Frederick Roberts

Postby Anne H » Sat Feb 11, 2017 3:52 pm

Richard ~ I'm grateful for your observations as I know next to nothing about the manufacture or designing of swords. Even if you come up with nothing positive when asking around, there may be ideas or opinions about my best next course of action i.e. avenues of research etc. Any crumb would be welcome!

Thank you
best
Anne H.
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Re: location of sword of Lord Frederick Roberts

Postby Richard » Mon Feb 13, 2017 7:38 am

Anne

The National Army Museum has a sword presented to Roberts by the City of London in 1880, inventory number 1963-10-169-1 - see http://www.nam.ac.uk/online-collection/ ... 3-10-169-1

Whilst the general form is that of a 'mameluke-hilted' General Officer's sword, it has a unique carved ivory lion-head pommel and various other non-standard embellishments which means it must have been designed by someone ...

I'll keep looking for others as you can be sure that he had more than one sword presented to him in his lifetime ....

Richard
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Re: location of sword of Lord Frederick Roberts

Postby Anne H » Mon Feb 13, 2017 11:07 am

Many thanks for the latest find.
Now I have three swords to research....
1880 City of London
1881 Boys of Eton College
1901 People of Portsmouth

The family tale is that the sword was presented by Queen Victoria.
On that basis alone I think the City of London sword is the best bet.... so far!
As you say... he is likely to have been presented with a number.

best
Anne H.
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