As narrated in the history of the Nijny Novgorodskii regiment written by V. Potto in 1865, the officers of the above regiment decided to present to the Emperor and his brother the Grand Duke Mikhail Nikolaevich, commander of the Caucasian Army, a Nijny Novgorodskaia shashka (called as such due to the specific design appearing on the swords worn by the officers of the regiment).
The blade of the present sword is uniquely described by Potto: "The blade, chosen by the Grand Duke, is also of historical importance in the Caucasus; it was kept for generations for over 100 years in the Shapsug Maratuzov family and was well known all along the coast of the Black Sea." The sword is not only described by V. Potto, but also illustrated with the the Grand Duke Michael wearing it.
Grand Duke Michael Nikolaevich (1832-1909), the fourth and youngest son of the Emperor Nicholas I, started his military career at an early age, in the pure tradition of the Romanov dynasty
His first experience on the battlefield was at Inkerman during the Crimean war during which he received the Order of St. George 4th class.
From December 1862 and for the next 20 years Grand Duke Michael was Viceroy of the Caucasus and Commander of the Caucasian Army. During his leadership the pacification of Chechnia, Dagestan and the Western Caucasus was accomplished.
In 1864 he was awarded the Order of St. George 2nd class for the pacification of the Western Caucasus and the end of the war in the Caucasus.
During the Turkish war in 1877 he was awarded the Order of St. George 1st class and was made Field Marshall in April 1878.
Such a caucasian sword with such a blade and such Imperial provenance can be truly considered a unique and extremely rare piece on the market.