The Cleveland Museum of Art

Collection Online as of May 19, 2024

Tulwar sword

Tulwar sword

Location: not on view


This long curved sword and scabbard are of the kind used and worn by Mughal nobility, as seen often in paintings. The openwork hilt is a characteristic of swords from the southern Indian region known as the Deccan. By the end of the 1500s, the Mughals began making regular incursions into the Deccan as they attempted to expand their empire, increasing the exchange of art forms.

Repeated four times, twice on one side of the blade and twice on the other in gold inlay, is the same line from the Qur'an 61:13: “Help [comes] from God, and Victory is imminent.” This is a popular inscription on daggers, banners, and other instruments of war, as it reassures the combatants that God is on their side, and therefore they can in good faith expect a speedy victory if they fight valiantly.
  • ?-1930
    Samson D. Wright [1866-1938], Cleveland Heights, OH, given to the Cleveland Museum of Art
    The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH
  • “Part II. Fifteenth Annual Report of the Cleveland Museum of Art 1930.” The Bulletin of the Cleveland Museum of Art, vol. 18, no. 2, 1931, pp. 1–128. Mentioned: p. 33 25137366
  • Martial Art of India (Indian Painting rotation). The Cleveland Museum of Art (organizer) (February 11-August 21, 2022).
    Art and Stories from Mughal India. The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH (organizer) (July 31-October 23, 2016).
  • {{cite web|title=Tulwar sword|url=false|author=|year=1700s|access-date=19 May 2024|publisher=Cleveland Museum of Art}}

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