British 1868 Pattern Lance 'Watsons Horse' 13th Bengal Cavalry
Rare complete British Military issue Lance 1868 pattern. Full length shaft of strong male Bamboo, the steel head and butt in fabulous condition. Military Ordnance stamps to all parts, the centre bound with white leather strapping. Retaining its original fabric pennant flag which has become detached. This pattern lance saw active service in many parts of the world and famous campaigns, and was extremely successful and as a lance used from horseback was virtually impossible to improve apon. Used noteably during the Zulu wars and in insurrections in India. Special lancer cavalry units were highly trained in using the lance which was used up to and including the first world war. Unlike preceeding and the later 1885, 94 lance patterns, this version used a strong male bamboo shaft, the triangular section head has three blade edges for maximum penetration, the shoe or butt is shaped to fit into a special carrying harness on the horse saddle. Approximately 9 ft in length. Interestingly the use of these pennons was originally intended to disconcert the horses of opposing cavalry in close combat, but they eventually became a decorative parade item, normally removed or wrapped in a canvas cover on active service. Although the standard British Pennon was red over white, occasionally specialist regiments would use variations, the famous Skinners Horse 1st used a yellow over blue pennon. It is probable that this lance belonged to another famous regiment Watsons horse 13th Bengal Lancers , also known as the Duke of Connaughts Lancers, known for using the red over blue pennon as found on this example. Originally formed as the 4th Sikh Irregular Cavalry, this Lancers regiment won many battle honours including Afghanistan Campaign, Egypt, and fighting in the Punjab. A wonderful and rare relic of the British cavalry during the 19th century.