THE SWORD CANE OF FIELD MARSHAL THE RT. HON. SIR HENRY PAGET, 1ST MARQUESS OF ANGLESEY, KG KP GCB GCH (1768-1854), COMMANDER OF THE ALLIED CAVALRY AT THE BATTLE OF WATERLOO, 18TH JUNE 1815, CIRCA 1818-28
with 17th century tapering slender blade of hollow-diamond section over the upper three-quarters, stamped 'Johannis' and 'Meigen' on the respective faces within a deep fuller ahead of a series of decorative pierced circles, malacca grip with gold finial engraved with the crest of the 1st Marquess of Anglesey, surrounded by The Garter and surmounted by a marquess's coronet, the grip pierced with a gold-lined aperture and fitted with woven black cord carrying a pair of tassels, matching scabbard forming the cane, with iron and brass finial
73.4 cm; 28 7/8 in blade 95.0 cm; 37 3/8 in overall
Sir Henry Paget, known to his contemporaries as a dandy, a duellist and one of the most stylish cavalry officers of his generation, was also a daring and successful cavalry commander. As the Earl of Uxbridge, he enjoyed Wellington's confidence sufficiently to be appointed the Duke's cavalry commander for the Waterloo campaign and, in recognition of his services, was created Marquess of Anglesey immediately after the battle. Towards the end of the battle he was severely wounded in the right knee by a grapeshot - famously remarking laconically at the time to Wellington that he appeared to have lost his leg; that leg was subsequently amputated above the knee and he used a series of bespoke, articulated, prosthetic right legs for the rest of his life. After convalescence, as contemporary illustrations record, Anglesey generally walked with the aid of two sticks. Late in 1827, he was appointed Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, a post that he held for only a year, although he was re-appointed to serve 1830-33. While he was a comparatively popular Lord Lieutenant because of his evident sympathy for the cause of Catholic emancipation, his role remained one in which he would have been in almost constant personal danger of attack. It is possible that this cane was purchased by Anglesey prior to his passage to Ireland in 1827, although it is equally possible that he purchased it a decade earlier - late Regency and Georgian Britain being a place in which gentlemen habitually went armed against the possibility of being attacked and robbed in the streets. While Paget was created a marquess in 1815, the presence of The Garter around the crest engraved into the cap indicates that the cane must post-date 1818 - Anglesey being appointed a Knight Companion of the Order of the Garter in that year.
£3000 - 5000 Click here for details of BP and other fees payable on this lot.