The best Indian swords often used Persian blades, and the present one is a very fine watered steel example from Isfahan, its quality suggesting a 17th century date of manufacture. It is inscribed with inlaid gold within two cusped panels, the upper one reading nasr min allah wa fatah qarib "Help from God and Victory is Close at Hand", whilst the lower one reads, in typical self-deprecating style 'amal kalb 'ali isfahani "work of the Dog" of 'Ali at Isfahan. The maker's mark appears in a small square box to the top left of the upper cartouche, and reads va, ha, ba, ra. Another blade with the same signature and maker's mark is illustrated in Alain Jacob, Les armes blanches du monde islamique, Paris, 1985, p.160.
Apart from the handguard, terminating in a dragon's head, the form and decoration of the hilt compare closely to one in the Nasser D. Khalili Collection of Islamic Art, illustrated in David Alexander, The Arts of War, Oxford 1992, no.130, pp.196-7. In his catalogue entry for it Alexander explains that this style of enamelling- polychrome against a partly gilt ground- is said to be from Lucknow, rather than white ground, which was used at Jaipur. He also gives details of two other examples of comparable swords, one in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (inv.no.36.25.1302) and another in the Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection in Madrid (inv.no.K.120). The other face of the Khalili hilt is published in The Indian Heritage: Court Life and Arts under Mughal Rule, London, 1982, no.434, p.134.