Grand Vizier Shamshir

Staying with traditional design, this example features a horn hilt. The horn has been ground down, smoothed and then polished to leave an excellent finish and fine surface texture. The grip is in the ‘pistol’ style with a silver plated cross guard. The finish is simple, yet provides a sought after elegance. At the top of the hilt, there is an original tassel. These tassels were often exhibited solely on the swords of generals or those that belonged to people of status. For example, see ‘Napoleon in Egypt, c. 1863 – Princeton University Art Museum’. You can clearly see the Ottoman Shamshir, the hilt with a tassel and the scabbard with two large mounts. This example we have for sale could there have belonged to, what was known in the Islamic world, as a Grand Vizier. This term was used for the head of government in the Islamic world. These officials were above the typical advisors to the state and were often given complete autonomy, as they possessed superiority and grandeur. For another example of an Ottoman Shamshir with a tassel, see the Met Museum, accession number 36.25.1304a,b. The Ottoman Shamshir also became popular in the Mughal courts in India. In a folio of the Akhbarnama, there is a painting of ‘Akbar Hunting’ (16th century) at the Met Museum, accession number 11.39.2. In the painting, Akbar can be viewed hunting with an Ottoman Shamshir.

The fine blade is watered steel, of Persian origin. At the midpoint, the blade sharply curves to provide it with the ‘shamshir’ style. The edge is cutting sharp and the steel is forged with superior quality. The active watered pattern is visible and is uniform for the entire length of the blade.

The sheath has four silver mounts; one large one at each end, and two smaller ones at the centre. The two at the centre were often used to attach the carrying sash. The silver mount at the top seamlessly blends with the matching silver cross guard to provide a uniform design. Underneath the leather sheath, lies a bare wooden base. The sheath is in immaculate condition and adds tremendous value to this overall fine sword.

Overall, a fine Ottoman Shamshir previously belonging to a Grand Vizier. Complete with its original tassel and mounted sheath. A real collectors item for those interested in a luxury Ottoman Shamshir.

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Stock Number: 16366

A rare and complete example of a Grand Vizier Ottoman Shamshir.
Materials: Watered steel, horn, and silver

Price available once signed in


Telephone: +44 (0) 207 6920 897

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Approximate Dimensions

  • Height: 102 cm (40.16 inches)
  • Length: 102 cm (40.16 inches)


Delivery Options

We will ship worldwide however the costs vary between countries so please email us for a quote. Depending on the item we will recommend the most suitable method.

Our preferred international shipping methods include fine art shippers Gander and White, Art Logistics, Cadogan Tate for items over £5,000. For Fedex, DHL or UPS shipments we expertly pack in-house in wooden crates or heavy duty cardboard – Suitable for most items under £5000. If you have your own shippers we are very happy to coordinate with them.


All items are sent fully insured at the invoice value.


All items are inclusive of all local taxes but may be subject to additional charges for importation and taxes local to the client. Antiques are zero-rated to the USA, all items ship with the correct paperwork. While we are not liable for these additional charges we do encourage clients to research these prior to purchasing items from us. We will make a full value disclosure, as required by the insurance, on all items sent overseas. This is required to ensure proper insurance cover in sending valuable items.


Where required we will oversee the completion of all export licenses for high-value items. We will also arrange for CITES paperwork for materials of endangered species including ivory, tortoiseshell, stuffed birds etc.


This is dependent on the size and value of the object, all items are checked over and polished before shipping and will generally have wooden crates made. This all takes time so expect 10 – 20 working days for delivery unless the item is small in which case 2-3 days from order.


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In the UK Online sales of this kind are known as ‘distance selling’. We offer a refund to customers if you’ve told us within 3 days of receiving the goods that you want to cancel. You have another 14 days to return the goods once you’ve told us of your intention. A refund will be issued within 14 days of receiving the goods back in the same condition. Return shipping should be the same level as received with insurance, we recommend using the same shipper at your cost. If needed we will help organise suitable shipping.

We will refund the purchase price, excluding delivery costs and taxes, within 14 days of the safe receipt of items in the same condition as supplied. The liability for any damage incurred during transit will remain with the sender. We recommend that adequate insurance is placed on items when returning them to us.

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We extend these Return terms to our international clients.


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