This is a classic double-disc, or figure-eight mariner’s cutlass in near perfect condition, one of the finest cutlasses of its kind known today..
Everything about it speaks to American manufacture, using local iron and wood, although the blade was most likely imported, which was typical back then. The blade is 23 inches (60 cm) in length and 1 3/8 inches wide, with a slight distal taper.
The grip is of wood and the guard is hammered iron. The blade is marked with the “running dog” and is dated 1806 on both sides.
The running dog mark was originally the mark of a German maker but was also used by several other blade-smiths in Britain and possibly America.
This sword has a fine provenance, having been passed from famous weapons authority Harold Peterson to merchant mariner, maritime artist and author Peter Copeland. I got it directly from Pete who was an old friend.
This cutlass still has its original edge. I have added a leather scabbard identical to the period although many cutlasses back then were sold without scabbards. Though dated 1806, this style was in use even earlier.