Due to the fragility of the material, jade daggers with knuckle guards are rare and few survive intact to this day. Michael Spink and Robert Skelton have distinguished two separate groups of jade daggers with knuckle guards. The first one is “quite distinct and earlier in date. These have a bifurcated palmette at the top of the hilt and a rounded moulding in the centre of the grip and can be dated to the Deccan during the 17th century". The second type "has vase-shaped grips, knuckle bows and triple flower buds” (Jaffer, 2013, pp.186-187). Our example is a fine variation of the second group. The vase-shaped grip, knuckle bow and pommel are all features common to the second category, although the shape of the upper section of our hilt is quite unusual. The shape of the hilt is very similar to an example now in the al-Sabah collection (279 INV. LNS 728 HS ab; Curatola et al., 2010, p.299). Both pieces are dated to the second half of the 17th century and are decorated with floral motifs inlaid with gold and set with rubies, emeralds and diamonds. The main technical difference between these two daggers is the way the stones are inlaid. While the dagger in the al-Sabah collection presents each stone separately set in the kundan technique, in our case a number of the stones are set directly next to others without the gold borders. A similar technique is found only on a few contemporaneous jade pieces, most of extremely high quality. A pen box now in the Victoria and Albert Museum (Inv.No 02549(IS)) has a floral arrangement very similar to the one on our dagger, with rubies and emeralds composing a floral scroll and some of the gems continuously set. The Victoria and Albert Museum box is dated to the 17th century and a similar date thus seems likely for our dagger. A notable feature of our dagger is that it retains its original sheath, with painted lacquer decoration and original gem set jade locket. The pattern on the lacquer of the sheath clearly recalls the floral decoration on the handle. Sheaths contemporaneous to their arms are quite rare - they are often replaced by velvet ones. Very few examples of original lacquer sheaths survive. One other example is now in the Al-Sabah collection (LNS 1004 M; Stronge, 2010, p.221, pl.183).