On May 23, a momentous historical artifact will be up for auction in London. It is none other than Tipu Sultan's renowned gold-hilted sword, which was once cherished in his personal chambers.
The sword is expected to be displayed in a secured glass case within the private residence of a wealthy history enthusiast.
It has been documented that Tipu Sultan, who ascended to power following his father's demise in 1782, possessed this remarkable piece of history from 1782 until 1799.
A sword that is an 'artifact'
This extraordinary sword boasts a gold hilt adorned with intricate koftgari ornamental work, showcasing the exquisite craftsmanship of Rajasthan's tribal artistry in royal weaponry.
Measuring nearly 100 cm in length, this sword holds immense value as a cherished artifact of Indian history.
It features a single-edged steel blade with a flattened spine that transitions into a double-edged point. The spine is adorned with a gold-overlaid inscription, adding to its decorative appeal. One side of the blade bears a gold overlaid orb and parasol mark, while the other side showcases an engraved inscription in English within a rectangular cartouche.
The convex pommel cap is adorned with a hinged gold loop, which serves as a holder for a sword knot, adding to the sword's functionality and style.
The hilt of the sword follows the typical tulwar design, crafted from steel. It is characterized by its curved shape and a dished disc pommel.The sword itself is a testament to its grandeur, with inscriptions of thuluth and bubri motifs adorning its hilt and extending all the way to the blade's edge.
Despite the controversies surrounding Tipu Sultan's legacy, he remains a significant figure in Indian history, celebrated for his valiant resistance against the British East India Company.
At a private auction in 2004, the liquor tycoon Vijaya Mallya paid a staggering Rs 1.5 crore for the last sword that belonged to Tipu Sultan.
However, the whereabouts of the precious sword are now unknown. During a hearing at the London High Court in 2018, Mallya’s lawyer claimed on his client's behalf that he had given away the historic sword.
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