The Lance

Discussion in 'Military History and Militaria' started by EX_STAB, Mar 13, 2007.

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  1. Inspired by a thread on wild boar and tales of pig sticking I've bought a lance. :D
    Don't get too excited, I can't even ride so the pigs are quite safe.

    In fact I'd seen this in a junk shop along with a "prop" lance made of a piece of dowel and some horrible home made tip. I'd fancied it then but hadn't been able to get a proper look at it.

    The lance I've bought appears to be original. It has a bamboo shaft about 10-12 feet long, with a tapered steel ferrule on the base. Half way up the lance is a leather loop strap, roughly stitched and some white cord whipping extending about 8" along the shaft. The whipping looks recent and is untidily finished. A red and white deeply forked pennant is fitted near to the tip. It is sewn on rather than laced etc.
    The tip itself is triple edged and 12" long, the edged portion being about 6" long. It is pinned to the bamboo shaft and is marked as follows:

    [align=center] No.1 I.P.
    COI I G1915

    (It's difficult to do in BB format - the ^ is a broad arrow and is aligned as a vertical group with the second letter I and the number 5)

    I paid £20 which seemed a good price.

    Can anyone tell me any more about it?

    Edit for typo and added detail.
  2. There were four approved patterns of lance in British service, the 1860, 1868, 1885 and 1894 patterns. All were about 9' 1" overall length, with similar tips and bases. The 1868 had a bamboo shaft, with the others having ash.

    The 1860 had a 28" steel head, the 1868 and 1885 had 12.6" heads, the 1894 had a 27.75" head. The blade portions on each lance were of triangular section.

    Sounds like yours - being 1915 dated - might be an 1894 pattern. This type stayed in front-line service until about 1926, when it was dropped from the equipment lists.
  3. Gremlin

    Gremlin LE Good Egg (charities)

    Get your camera out then ES!!!!
  4. Well that is odd then because it's definitely a 12" (12.6"?) head. Could it be an 1885 Pattern made in 1915? I'll be most amused to find it's a real rarity.
  5. theres me hoping you were trying to organise a jousting tournamant :D
  6. I'll try to get a picture tomorrow but I'll have to get it put on CD from film. Might take a day or five.
    Note to self: Buy a digital camera.
  7. sounds like a bargin at that price..
  8. If it is a real Lance the colours may mean something, you may be able to find the colours on the web. Lancer Regiments (I know it is a Lance but what you describe is also used for none Lancers) used Red and White pennants.

    Could the "arrow" marking be a crows foot a symbol of MoD/WD ownership?

    G1915 could very well be teh year of manufacture.


    A picture of several Bengal Lancers Lances, strangely enough dated 1915. (Found on first Google too!!! :D)

  9. The WD "crows foot" looks like this one

  10. The broad arrow is the usual government property stamp.
    From what I've found so far, all British Lancers had the red and white Pennon. It was copied from the pennon carried on Polish Lances.

    The lance I have is very similar in appearance to the ones in the picture. They also seem to have the Pennons sewn on and have the whipping around the shaft. Mine has a brown leather loop where these have white. The general impression is much the same.

    Perhaps "No.1 I.P." stands for India Pattern?
    COI is probably the maker. The G in front of 1915 perhaps indicates George V
  11. General Melchett

    General Melchett LE Moderator

    £20! Why do I never find bargains like that.

    ES, well done you lucky barsteward.
  12. is the pennant crimped? if so its 16/5th
  13. I'm not sure that the penant (pennon?) is original. It's not crimped.
    The information I've seen so far says they were laced on or similar. This is sewn so that the lance is threaded through it. It's then been glued I think. Looks like very old glue though. The leather strap appears to be old.
  14. The funny thing is that when I first saw it I thought it was a prop, there was a very rough prop one with it (tied together). It was stood outside in a yard which would suggest to most folks it was of no value. It's been there for at least a fortnight and no one's taken it. There was no price on it, the lad who was minding the shop had to phone up for one and came back with "£20 each". I said I'd just take the one and bit his arm off!

    There are loads of antique shops where I live and I live in the centre of town so I get to see a lot of interesting stuff when I'm just coming and going to the pub, shops etc.