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22SqnRAE

Pattern 1903 Bayonet - Indian Markings?

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22SqnRAE

G'Day Folks,

 

First post here, so go easy if I sound like an idiot (many years of practice... :huh:) for asking a question which I'm sure you've all seen before. "What do you make of the markings on my bayonet?"

 

Now I've canvassed some usual References, and tried on line too, but the combination isn't quite there yet.

 

I make the markings to be:

 

2. G.  I (or numeral 1?)

336

 

I'm thinking from my piecing together of notes (including Ian Skennerton's advice) that this bayonet:

  1. Was probably in Indian Army service (because of the green paint and that they loved the P'03 over the P'07)
  2. The 2 G probably means Second Gurkha Rifles (2nd King Edward VII's Own Gurkha Rifles, The Sirmoor Rifles)
  3. Wondering if the "I" (or numeral '1") was the Battalion or Infantry, meaning the wallah doing the stamping decided that 2G I (infantry) was easier than hammering in 2/1. G.R. - a saving of 3 hammer and die strikes?

Happy to be completely wrong in my assessment, but would gratefully appreciate your guidance as to the likely Unit owner of this bayonet.

 

Thank you for your time and comments.

 

IMG_0151_edited.jpg

IMG_0152_edited.jpg

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shippingsteel

This marking should be for the 2nd Battalion of the Guides Infantry which was a relatively prestigious regiment of the Indian Army. The 2nd Battalion was a wartime unit which was raised in 1917 and continued on in service after the war.

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22SqnRAE

SS,

 

Thank you, that's a great piece of information and history. The Guides Infantry and Cavalry seem to have missed out in Skennerton's  The Broad Arrow, presumably because of the Partition rendered them no longer part of the British Army.

 

The Second Guides Bn does make a lot more sense, hence the 2. G. I.

 

What is the relevance of the green paint on the pommel? Another sub-continental idiosyncrasy in corrosion protection?

 

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shippingsteel

See page 112 in the Broad Arrow, the listing shows the regiment under C.G.I., but you do have to allow for the vagaries of "time period". We don't know how they were marking their weaponry at the time this bayonet was issued. The green paint is often referred to as a "corrosion protection" measure, but who knows when it was applied.

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trajan
On 06/06/2019 at 07:04, 22SqnRAE said:

... First post here, so go easy if I sound like an idiot (many years of practice... :huh:) for asking a question which I'm sure you've all seen before. "What do you make of the markings on my bayonet?"

 

Welcome to GWF! And don't worry, some of us here will freely admit that we are still learning about our favourite subjects! So, no such thing as a idiot question, especilly not this interesting piece.

 

Guides Infantry Regiment makes sense although I have never seen a list of Indian unit markings - but "GUIDES INFY" was the official abbreviation used on on the edge of the WW1 medals awarded to its members.

 

Green paint - to cover up the shiny bits I always thought! Just as with German Feldgrau. 

 

If you want to know more, I strongly suggest you get a copy of M.Rose, 12 inches of imperial steel in the service of the Raj: sword bayonets pattern 1888 and 1903 in Indian service (2016?). Order from Michael direct, e-mail:fam.rose5@bigpond.com

 

It's expensive with the postage, but well worth it - the standard reference work on the subject!

 

Trajan

 

(MODS - not an agent for M.Rose)

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Nutting
Posted (edited)

Everyone has, quite rightly, focused on the unit markings of this bayonet; however, it is also worth noting that with a date of November 1906, this is a relatively late Patt.’03, since the Patt. ’07 was introduced in January 1908. Since the royal cipher is very faint, and I can’t see the tip of the pommel, I can’t tell whether it was made as an ‘03 or a conversion from ‘88. The faintness of the cipher and the strength of the ‘1903’ stamp makes me think it’s a conversion, although 11/06 would make it a late conversion.

 

Nigel.

Edited by Nutting

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trajan

Well spotted!

 

And this one is even later... Feb 07... Spotted in Sheffield on a P.1903 issued to a RE unit - I'll get all the other details up later...

IMG_0275a.jpg

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t.ryan
Posted (edited)

1903.jpg.1e034c46a13bb6856b79516e8b6cab95.jpgHello, new here but have been reading your posts on the 03 bayonets and scabbards with interest.

I have a Wilkinson London, Indian marked 1903 with date of 8/01, it is marked R.F.I. and small crown on end of pommel and side of pommel is marked 21   r and 771.

The bayonet is in what looks like a 1903 Land Mk.1 Scabbard with internal metal cape, the metal topmount is bare and is missing the original leather frog, otherwise it is in good condition. There appears to be a small number 5 under the staple and what looks like 11 over c on the metal topmount, these are the only markings i can find on the scabbard. I cannot see ^ on the  internal Cape or any markings on the leather.

Question is, did India also make these scabbards, or what might i have.

Terry

1903 1.jpg

1903 4.jpg

1903 Scabb1.jpg

1903 Scabb5.jpg

1903 8.jpg

1903 9.jpg

1903 10.jpg

1903 2.jpg

Edited by t.ryan
Add photo's.

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trajan

Looks interesting if not quite my field. I'm replying to boost it up so that others will get to grips with it.

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t.ryan

Thanks, i have just added photo of the markings on end of pommel.

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trajan

Can't comment right now on the scabbard - more the type of thing SSteel loves! But this is a convert using a P.1888 blade. I have seen a few like this but with EFD stamps on the pommel head indicating conversion at Enfield, but I can't recollect one with a RFI stamp. Is that '21 P' on the pommel rather than '21 R'? Then perhaps the 21st Punjabi Regiment? A guess - I really don't know much about the Indian army! 

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t.ryan

It looks like a small r, or upside down J reason being that the stamp looks to deep to be anything else unless maybe a broken stamp. I have attached a photo in different light.

1903 3.jpg

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trajan

They wouldn't use a lower case letter here, to the best of my knowledge, and unlikely to be a broken upper case 'R' missing its tail, so I go along with a 'P', which would fit with the 21 to be 21st Punjabi. But I am open to correction!

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Dave66
Posted (edited)

 

The Indian scabbards tended to have the extra loop on both the stitching and frog...even though the frog on this is absent the bottom loop still remains....interesting thread here showing examples...

ties in nicely with the Indian conversion.

 

Dave.

 

9CC3A3B0-F9B6-4E5E-8491-EC5CAF068587.png

Edited by Dave66

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t.ryan

Thank you for steering me to the other threads were there are some nice photo's and good information to read through. From what i can see and what has been said it would appear that my 1903 bayonet and scabbard are correct for each other and i am pleased about that. It would be good to see if anyone has this same scabbard with any Indian markings on it and what they actually are. I only have the one 1903 bayonet and scabbard but have a Pat.1888 Mk1 2nd type and a Pat.1888 Mk2 both in Pat.1888 Mk1 Scabbards. It is also great to see just where these old bayonets have ended up around the world and that they are being looked after and talked about by collectors from far and wide.

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MRDK1
On 11/07/2019 at 15:09, t.ryan said:

Thank you for steering me to the other threads were there are some nice photo's and good information to read through. From what i can see and what has been said it would appear that my 1903 bayonet and scabbard are correct for each other and i am pleased about that. It would be good to see if anyone has this same scabbard with any Indian markings on it and what they actually are. I only have the one 1903 bayonet and scabbard but have a Pat.1888 Mk1 2nd type and a Pat.1888 Mk2 both in Pat.1888 Mk1 Scabbards. It is also great to see just where these old bayonets have ended up around the world and that they are being looked after and talked about by collectors from far and wide.

The scabbard is a : Scabbard, Sword-bayonet, pattern 1903 Land, I.P. (Mark I) but missing its tag.

 

MR 

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