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Thread: " identify this sword " - " sword info needed"

  1. #1

    " identify this sword " - " sword info needed"

    Mes amis,

    is it only me who is disturbing me on this way of how some questioneers asking their "needs" A little more polight and respect for this forum would do nobody harm....It's a forum to share intrests and the use of the forum is to have all sides a pleasure in it....as for me, i 'don't feel the need to answer this kind of shouts...One-day-flys who only seeking their answer i am not intrested in anymore to help..

    Sorry...

    Marc

  2. #2
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    Marc,

    I think it is frustrating. I find the posts where they say something such as "I just purchased this sword--help me identify it." as somewhat strange. Why would one purchase a sword not knowing what it is--and, moreover, argue with those who respond with input (to say for example, it is a reproduction or fake)?

    Tom
    Tom Donoho

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by marc Marbot View Post
    Mes amis,

    is it only me who is disturbing me on this way of how some questioneers asking their "needs" A little more polight and respect for this forum would do nobody harm....It's a forum to share intrests and the use of the forum is to have all sides a pleasure in it....as for me, i 'don't feel the need to answer this kind of shouts...One-day-flys who only seeking their answer i am not intrested in anymore to help..

    Sorry...

    Marc
    Marc
    I agree with you 100% Those who ask such 'Please identify' questions should in my opinion at least do a bit of their own research, however elementary. There have been a few questions that I have answered with a simple 'Google' search!!!!!!

    This Forum is for discussion and research by the asker and the replier and I also feel, as Marc says, that a little more politeness and respect should be shown- we are not a FREE answering service although of course we all try and help.
    I would expect that members would at least TRY (There are enough books about!) and identify what they have and then offer the sword and their opinion and let the members expand and polish the identification or refute it and offer a theory of their own.

    I have been thinking (with my huge library of original Wilkinson drawings, specs and documents) of charging a fee like Arms Research for Wilkinson Numbers and as Wilkinson Sword did (pre 2005) for answering queries. I may charge for sending scans of old documents as well -It all takes time and money

    I am afraid I am totally with Marc on this one. I seem to spend every increasing hours in the day, researching 'Identify my sword' queries which I will, like Marc, not do this form of query from now on.

    I too am sorry for this stance but am fed up with being used as a Free Information Service - Museums insist you to visit and do research and don't do it for you.

    Robert
    Last edited by Robert Wilkinson-Latham; 10-04-2010 at 01:42 AM.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Wilkinson-Latham View Post
    This Forum is for discussion and research by the asker and the replier and I also feel, as Marc says, that a little more politeness and respect should be shown- we are not a FREE answering service although of course we all try and help.
    Good post, Marc, which I'm sure will provoke further discussion when many of our US friends come online later!

    I can sympathise with Robert, especially when having such a famous name means that people will automatically assume that you have all sword-related knowledge at your finger-tips, and don't realise that you will only end up doing for them the same kind of research that they could have done for themselves! Add to this the fact that some people are just naturally rude and ungracious, or are new to forum etiquette...though we probably won't be able to do much about that apart from educating them.

    However, I also speak as someone who has asked just these kinds of "idiot" questions on other forums (eg the British Medals Forum, or some of the family genealogy sites), and obtained some very useful information thereby. Of course, I would also like to think I tried my own research angles first, was suitably (and publicly) grateful for the help received, and always offered to share the reason for my enquiry and/or pictures of the sword which gave rise to the research so the responder feels he's getting something in return.

    I also quite enjoy being asked for an opinion on any new swords which fall within my own area of collecting interest (ie British military, Victorian to First World War periods). One solution might be for those of us who are prepared to assist with identification queries to add our forum names to a Sticky post so new members know who to ask via a PM. That would also avoid clogging up the forum with these sorts of post, which I agree don't add much to knowledge or debate. We could add provisos that we will only respond on a "best endeavours" basis, as time allows, and will not engage in prolonged exchanges once our reply has been provided - a kind of "take it or leave it" approach once the reasons behind the ID and/or supporting book references have been given. If we took this approach, then any requests for IDs that were posted on the forum could either be simply deleted by the moderators, moved to a special "identification" area, or given a standard reply to point the enquirer at the Sticky thread then closed off for further discussion.

    Just some ideas.

    John
    "If I can't be a good example to others, at least let me be a horrible warning".

  5. #5
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    I can sympathise with both sides in this - I have asked 'what is this?' (and am very grateful for the answers received - as with my recent Scottish Field Officer's sword, which I was unaware of as a pattern previously, or my strange Royal Artillery/Engineers hybrid sword). I also try to help tell people what they have, if I am able and one of the more regular posters doesn't answer first.

    Lastly I'd like to point out that the identification threads on this forum make up quite a bit of the forum traffic - do we want to cut down the traffic, or conversely keep things here busy? Personally I find the identification threads incredibly educational. I am hugely grateful to all the people who have helped identify specific swords, both mine and other people's. I feel like I have learned a hell of a lot from these threads (perhaps more than from the many books I own).

    Regards,
    Matt

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    Thanks Marc,

    ... and yes, you bring up a good point. I agree with your comments, as well as those offered by Robert, Tom & John. As Matt notes, it's also true that we see very interesting swords in addition to the occasional sleeper posted with the 'what is it?' tag line and it can be said that the answers provided to such queries serve the general benefit of the forum at large.

    All that aside, we're basically talking about an etiquette filter and this is a tall order as regards the internet, which is essentially a giant H.P. Lovecraft style portal through which positively anything and everything can slither, fly and crawl through. However, the idea of an Identification Forum might be interesting. Properly staffed, it may very well serve both purposes. More comments?...
    mark@swordforum.com

    ~ Hostem Hastarum Cuspidibus Salutemus ~

    "Those who beat their swords into plowshares usually end up plowing for those who don't."
    Benjamin Franklin

  7. #7
    I'm inclined to agree with Matt on this one.These posts are part of the dynamic of the forum and can,on occasion, expand to become valuable and interesting threads.They can also serve to introduce new members who can end up sticking around.
    If you find them irritating they can quite easily be ignored ,it's your call.For the most of us, help and advice given is greatly appreciated and reciprocated if possible.Of course there are some members who are extemely knowledgable and can find themselve more put upon.That is recognised and they are esteemed members of this forum.
    For my part, I enjoy this forums' warm,friendly and inclusive athmosphere.

    If you do a search for information on swords this site is one of the first places you land.That's a good thing.IMO
    Last edited by niall dignan; 10-04-2010 at 07:25 AM.
    Niall Dignan

  8. #8
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    I echo the frustration of members who offer advise to those who seem to have taken no time to do basic inquiries before asking their questions, or are looking for wording for their eBay listings. That being said I don't feel compelled to offer my input and can choose to ignore the thread.

    Conversely you do get the curious one off that comes in that prompts an interesting discussion that I learn from. I too have been recipient of information from this forum and know how appreciative I was of that knowledge.

    I do like Mark's idea of an Identification forum, but wonder if the distinctions can so clearly be made as to which forum a thread should be started in.

    Rob
    Vir prudens non contra ventum mingit

  9. #9
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    I see no problem with such posts whatsoever, it is not like we are all here some academicians writing definitive books - we are here to have fun and to share.

    I would, indeed, be very much concerned if the forum atmosphere stopped new collectors from asking such questions.

  10. #10
    Well, yes I agree with Marc it is tedious, especially when it is obvious all they want is a quick buck. I have mostly given up answering requests now days unless 1. the sword is interesting or 2. the individual has obviously done some research first and has taken it as far as he can without help.

    I don't really think a separate area for identification would help a lot. There are always going to be topics/swords that don't spark ones personal interest - I confess I don't always read all the Victorian or US sword threads , but it keeps the forum moving.

    David

  11. #11
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    Without question, someone asking about their granfathers sword is fine, who has previously had no interest in swords begins here. I think the debate has more to do with the sometimes negative or rude replies or gaining information required for sale purposes.
    There will always be a few that spoil it for many. It should not be too difficult to differentiate the honest questions from the ones earlier described as " need a name for my ebay sale".
    If someone requires information to sell, then they should state their intentions upfront, so we may choose whether to spend the time and energy or not.
    Yes, most information is out there on the web, somewhere, but we all want timely answers to our questions, and this is what we on this forum can do best.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Will Mathieson View Post
    Without question, someone asking about their granfathers sword is fine, who has previously had no interest in swords begins here. I think the debate has more to do with the sometimes negative or rude replies or gaining information required for sale purposes.
    There will always be a few that spoil it for many. It should not be too difficult to differentiate the honest questions from the ones earlier described as " need a name for my ebay sale".
    If someone requires information to sell, then they should state their intentions upfront, so we may choose whether to spend the time and energy or not.
    Yes, most information is out there on the web, somewhere, but we all want timely answers to our questions, and this is what we on this forum can do best.
    We mustn't help ebayers too much - it wouldn't be the same without Lee enfield bayonets described as ancient gladiator swords and P08's as genuine historic pirate cutlasses. It would take all the fun out of browsing

  13. #13
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    All that has been said is true.

    Many of the "please identify this sword" posts, and posters, are, uh, er, ungracious... but some turn out to be quite interesting and I learn something new from them. Some posters are unfamiliar with internet protocol and some are genuinely thankful for any scrap of information they receive. Often, I learn as much from the responses as does the person who asked the infomation.

    I don't mind answering some questions from transient posters and if I do I simply don't respond but go on the next topic. Some folks who ask these questions stay around and become helpful collectors and forum members themselves. Others will simply go away and we won't hear from them anymore, so they cease to be a bother after one post.

    I think that it is in our own interest to encourage visitors to engage in conversation with forum members. Who knows, they may be the next budding collector who will buy our cast off swords when we are done with them? They may also turn out to be very knowledgeable in some related field and Prussian swords or those of the Household Cavalry may simply be unfamiliar to them. They may also be interested in selling whatever they found in the closet and one of us may benefit.

    My response to questions that I don't want to answer is simply not to answer them.

    George
    "You can't please everyone, so you have to please yourself." Ricky Nelson

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by David Critchley View Post
    We mustn't help ebayers too much - it wouldn't be the same without Lee enfield bayonets described as ancient gladiator swords and P08's as genuine historic pirate cutlasses. It would take all the fun out of browsing
    Indeed. Back when we could still buy pointy things from Ebay in the UK I got a French Napoleonic naval officer's sword and an 18thC German hunting sword each for about the price of a Chinese takeaway. I miss those days

  15. #15

    Smile learning by reading

    As a new member I would liketo tell you how I found this forum:

    I was looking for an information about a maker of a 1796 LC officer sword. I asked some military dealers in Germany and everyone says - british - I do not know.

    Then a friend of mine told me about this forum and was sure that I will get an answer immediatly. And this was true. I shared the new information in the two german sword forums and so many people participate on this.

    I am reading many articles like "whats that for a sword" and can learn a lot by it - thanks to all.

    Hopefully I can give back all this sometimes when someone asks a question about german fraternal swords.

    For my opinion:

    Feel free to ask - if not only an information for selling on ebay is needed - better sell it to a forum member.

  16. #16

    re

    Friends,

    For me the main question is and will be the key rule for me to have contact with somebody, "Is he according to me passionated busy with history of the piece/regiments ect or is the questioneer willing to stand open to dive in a new world of collecting of ancient objects and to invest time in his new item or wanted item, . For my passion this are mainly swords but also other Napoleonic items ( mainly French or French satelite Kingdoms) I am doing already for 15 years daily hours of study to objects, books, internet, collections to feed my hunger to know history. Swords are the most noble object of the militairy art/history for me. I do not feel myself a collector but more a historican who likes to have some live objects of ancient times to feel the history...I understand certainly far not all can make time free of wanted it this way, but it is my choice to have nice contacts on a certain level. I do not exclude anyone, everyone i think is free to join a honest question, because we want to talk about our passion. I know a lot of collectors with very intresting pieces who living in a "black hole" only to be known afterall as specialists when they die and their collection comes on the market were all dive at as flies on a auction..I have coosed years ago to publish articles and to inform serious collectors. I cannot say it to mutch, i do not feel myself to mutch to inform others, but at least a polight question with a own research would be a +. So victor, ofcourse one can ask questions, see above, and i do understand your concern, i was once a starter myself...
    Matt, ofcourse it's intresting to learn from others, but i concerns me that die-hards like Richard had opened a own forum to came once to the same conclusion and left this one with missing all good info especially on British swords. Ofcourse one can join that like i did aswel but the info is cutted in pieces now or one will not take the trouble anymore to post info. I becoming really bored for standard questions as" who's poicon is that on this French sword"? i suggest to buy a book or as Robert said, google...
    Beside that when i myslef searching for this kind of info the topics stay mainly empty..

    The "grandfather" sword one must also take with a box of salt.like the cross of christ, if one brings all the wood together of his cross relics one has a large forest. Ofcourse some really honest fellows joins us to ask what their grandfather had possed but mainly those "founded"pieces during WW2 are ending at Ebay and with our knowledge the price is settled.

    to share info is crucial for all off us, but it is how it is done....


    See ya Marc

  17. #17

    re

    Dear Andreas,

    thanks for your comment. For me you understood the vallue of how to use this forum


    All the best!

  18. #18

    Smile

    Hello Marc,

    I think you are right in many cases and the idea of collecting as a kind of historian is near to mine in the field of german fraternal collectibles.

    For my person I am interested also in other parts of collecting and therefore such a forum is so interesting.

    It is the favor not to need to buy books or "google" - you can find information given by professionals and enthusiasts.

    No better way to get some new education.

    Best regards

    Andreas

  19. #19
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    We might keep in mind that many of these questions come in from people who are not serious sword collectors and they are, indeed, trying to research their items for a variety of reasons and the Internet is a good way to do research. Like it or not, this forum comes up prominantly in searches.

    Reference books are great, but are very expensive in themselves and someone who does not have any knowlege is not likely to invest in one even if they could find a copy.

    I've not seen what I would consider rude or discourteous requests for information, but I have seen several rude answers from forum members when someone posts for an item which is a modern reproduction or downright fake.

    All in all, I've gotten invaluable information from many fellow members (certainly more than I have contributed) and I hope to continue to do so. In the spirit of what I have received, I plan to give what little information I may to anyone that might ask.

    Finally, I have received a lot of free information from Marc, personally, and I hope he realizes how much i appreciate it.

  20. #20
    I personally like those "identify sword" threads; I always read them. If the sword in question is unknown to me, I learn something new when an expert gives an answer to the asker. I learned a lot about the types of blades that I'm not familiar with, by just reading those threads. And if I know something about the sword in question, I try to help the asker as best as I could. I think gathering and sharing knowledge is (or at least should be) the main point of this forum.
    "The relationship between West(Occident) and East(Orient) is indeed an example of a relationship of power and domination. Orientalism is thus a style of thought based upon an ontological and epistemological distinction made between the Orient and the Occident. It is a Western style of dominating, restructuring and building hegemony over the Orient.İt is an accepted grid for filtering through the Orient into Western consciousness, into the general culture."
    From "Orientalism" by Edward Said

  21. #21
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    Seems like a nobrainer Marc if you don't like a post just don't reply to it, if you don't like the person posting or what they say ignore it. I find 99% of threads are quite interesting and there is something to be learned, even the silly ones can turn out to be interesting. For the "what is it" questions if they come from someone who has no interest in swords why should that person have to run out and buy an expensive book to learn about an unusual sword when all they have to do is post a picture of the amazing piece they just inherited and that way we all get to see the amazing piece and hopfully learn something? I replied to this thread because i think we'd all loose something if silly posts were deleted before we had a chance to learn and if you don't like a post ignore it. As for being polite, well some folks were raised without a polite bone in their body and i don't understand that, it never hurts to say please and thankyou and if they don't, ignore them and hopefully just pay attention to the amazing picture they sent or ignore them? Like WBranner i've seen a lot more ignorant two or three word answers to questions than i have ignorant impolite questions, Yours aye
    David Gray

  22. #22
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    right on Sancar well said
    David Gray

  23. #23
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    I should clarify that my issue is wirth those who post rather shortly with no "please" or a later "thank you" that follows. And I don't care for the posts that are only trying to get a value or description for eBay or other sales.

    As for research: remember the days when we went to the library and found those fascinating books on antique swords stocked away in the corners of the library? That research was quite fun. I now have most of those books. But it is always a good place to start for those starting out in this field of collecting.
    Tom Donoho

  24. #24
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    I thought I would add my 10 cents worth. I have been collecting for a couple of years now and have managed to collect a modest amount of Victorian swords
    At the beginning I felt that I was always asking people on this forum dumb question after dumb question and I am continually amazed by all the new info I glean from the 'what am I questions'. Just recently I learned about percy pattern blades ...didn't really know what they were and I was lucky enough to pick up a really nice example. Without the assistance of everybody here I really don't think I would have a the confidence to continue collecting....being in Australia, the added cost to post makes purchases just that bit more expensive.
    I always open the questions and if they don't interest me I hit the back button and have a look at what else has been posted.

  25. #25

    A sense of perspective

    Having spent the day constantly being outbid on several fine swords by the same *$%^%*&**& dealer I can reliably state that a the annoyance of a few damn fool questions once in a while pails into insignificance.

    David

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