Sikh Arms & Armour, A Rare & Large Lacquered Leather Sikh Shield (Dhal), Decorated With Copper-Gilt Bosses & Crescent Probably The Punjab Province Lahore – Pakistan, Circa 18th Century.

Identification Number: 48


The red lacquered surface of the thick hide is made out of either a Buffalo or Rhinoceros.

The shield is fitted with a Large Copper-Gilt Crescent with two Copper-Gilt radiant star shaped bosses fitted on top, with other four open work gilt copper bosses fitted in the center.

The fine open work decoration of the copper-gilt bosses including the large crescent is a very well-known Sikh symbol which had been widely used in other related Sikh works of Art such as in various types of shields and the Akali-Nihang Turban or (Dastar-Bunga).

The reverse of the shield is fitted with a leather cushion and cylindrical steel handles.

Condition: Very Good, Loses to Red Lacquer on the surface of the hide

Dimensions: 60 cm.


For a related shield Please see the metal with gold overlaid on steel (Koftgari) shield at the metropolitan museum, New York, USA, Lot Exhibited in Gallery 379.

For another similar dated 1767/8 AD. Mughal Buffalo Shield with very similar decoration, please see Her Majesty The Queen Royal Armouries collection.

For a similar example, please see lot Nos. 262A, B, D, E, F & 262L illustrated at Islamic Weapons, Maghrib to Moghul, by Anthony C. Tirri page 357, for other examples you can also see Hales, Robert published 2013, Islamic & Oriental Arms & Armour, pages 289-lot No.701