Group of Mahdist Sufi Moslem Weapons
- Dated: circa 1880
- Culture: Sudanese
This group of items originates from the Islamic Mahdist movement of the mid-late 19th century, where Sufi warriors or ‘Ansar’ rose up against the British and Egyptian rulers in a form of Jihad or Holy War.
The Anglo-Sudan War is most famous for the death of General Gordon on the steps of Khartoum Palace. Typically weapons from this context are inscribed with Arabic script in Sudanese form ‘Thuluth’, and the use of lizard and crocodile skin is frequently found associated with scabbards and mounts.
The two large battle axes found here are heavy and solid fighting items, traces of silver patterning remain to the heads, both feature a solid iron topspike, and also a spiked steel butt making these weapons truly formidable. One haft is fully mounted with yellow crocodile skin, the other with some remnants of lizard.
Source: © 2013 Ashoka Arts