Great Scott Antiques
Web site: https://www.greatscottantiques.com/
A very good Victorian 1897 Pattern Infantry Officers Sword by Wilkinson with Patent Hilt.
The blade etched with the regimental badge of the Shropshire Light Infantry.
The sword of Kenneth Lyle Philpin Lely.
Kenneth was born in 1879, Bombay in India. His father, Frederick Lely seems to have spent most of his career in India. In 1892 Kenneth Lely attended Malvern School, leaving in 1896, initially joining the 3rd Battalion Cameronians, before joining the 1st battalion, of the Kings Shropshire Light Infantry in January 1899. Interestinly his promotion to the rank of second lieutenant in the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry was in succession to Lieutenant G. B. Arbouin. (His sword also listed on this website.)
On 9th May 1900 Lely was promoted to Lieutenant, and the 1st Battalion of the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry had been sent to South Africa, seeing action at Paarddeberg.
After the Boer War, the 1st Battalion of the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry was posted to Poona, Bombay
Lieutenant Kenneth Lely was seconded from the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry by the Colonial Office, and attached to the King’s African Rifles.
Lely was promoted to Captain, still listed with King’s Shropshire Light Infantry (L.G. September 1906)
On 22nd July 1908 he was made a company commander, King’s African Rifles (Central African Battalion). serving in Nairobi, East Africa with the 2nd Battalion.
In 1912 Captain Kenneth Lely had returned from Africa and was again with the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry. After this time I cannot find him again in the records.
Steel 1897 pattern Infantry officer hilt with VR cypher. Fully chequered backstrap with gutta percha patent hilt grips bound with silver twistwire (one strand absent towards the pommel)
Bright etched 32.5 inch single fullered blade with Wilkinson's details to one ricasso, HW proof slug to the other. Overlaid initials in one escutcheon, with the regimental badge to the other. Foliate etching, royal coat of arms, and crowned VR cypher.
Housed in it's original steel mounted wooded leather covered field service scabbard. The steel drag has been covered in leather.
A very good example of a scarce Patent hilted officers sword by the best possible maker, to a career soldier with room for further research. Sold with a digital copy of the Wilkinson Sword Proof Book ledger for this sword, confirming its provenance.
Strictly over 18's only. Photo ID will be required before this item can be dispatched.