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Thuma (Dagger) and Sheath
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Thuma (Dagger) and Sheath


Description Exhibitions Provenance Inscription Credit
Description Although their blades were often of inferior quality, Yemeni daggers had beautifully ornamented sheaths with elaborate silverwork, as seen here. These daggers, which symbolically highlighted male courage and strength, played an important role in certain dances by men. Daggers were positioned in belts made of colorful fabric. In addition to being silversmiths, Yemeni Jews excelled as producers of textiles and were known to weave the belts that held the daggers. The dagger is inscribed in Arabic nusfi 1267, meaning "half" and 1267 (the date); it is inscribed in Hebrew mahasit (half). The date may be associated with the reign of al Mutawakkil "Ali (AH 1267) or that of al-Mansur Ahmad (AH 1266–67).
Exhibitions
  • Diadem and Dagger: Jewish Artisans of Yemen. The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2012-2013.
Provenance Mr. Derek Content and Mr. Benjamin Zucker [Zucker Family Trust] London and New York, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 2010, by gift.
Inscriptions [Stamp] In Arabic: nusfi 1267; [Engraved] In Hebrew: Sulayman Salih, mahasit
Credit Joint gift to the Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, and the Israel Museum, Jerusalem, by Mr. Derek Content and Mr. Benjamin Zucker in honor of Mrs. Amanda Content and Mrs. Barbara Zucker, 2010

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Period
1267 AH/AD 1850-1851
Medium
silver with gilding and wood
(Arms & Armor)
Accession Number
51.1451
Measurements
Overall L: 22 1/16 x W: 16 1/8 in. (56 x 41 cm); L of blade: 11 x W of blade: 18 7/8 in. (28 x 48 cm)
Geographies
Location Within Museum
Not On View

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