Mark (MK) 1 Gurkha Kukri.
British-Indian Army, Standard Pattern Gurkha Issue Kukri.
The Mark 1 Kukri was the first Official Military Pattern Kukri of the 20th Century.
It was created blending the needs of the time with traditional influences.
Throughout its first creation to World War 1 these knifes were used by Gurkha soldiers and other units of the British-Indian Army for warfare. The Mark 1 (MK 1) was the first Officially sanctioned pattern kukri knife by the British-Indian Military establishment!
Prior to the Great War a vast majority of the Gurkha Units served in the North West Frontier and also in the North East Frontier Areas of Assam and Burma besides in India... in the Great War the gurkhas fought from the trenches of France and Beligium to the Middle East and the Far East. The Mark 1 Kukri would have been issued to many gurkhas and carried by many in battle. A large variation of climates, conditions and modes of warfare, the Mark 1 had to live up to a variety of challenges. Here some 100 years later it is, the Original as issued Kukri!
One of the most common characteristics of the MK1 is the sunken nut in its handle, allowing the metal from the blade to be joined to the handle.
The rat tail tang in full length coming down to the butt of the handle where it was then joined and sunken into to the walnut wood handlee, making it a very strong and reliable knife.
The MK 1 was in production by 1903 and it is possible to find MK 1 Kukri knifes until about 1915 from whence the MK 2 took over.
This Kukri has a massive blade and would require a strong and sturdy hand for it to be used effectively. The hillmen of Nepal and the Himalayas, the Happy Warriors as they became known held and used these formidable blades of massive steel!
The upper spine is stamped with "FW" which stands for Fort William, the British Indian Army Head Quarter by Calcutta, where it passed inspection.
There is a second stamp "WMM" which most likely is the manufacturer.
The ricasso of the blade is stamped "88" followed by "8 ABC" below, ABC standing for Army Bearer Corps which included many Gurkhas.
On both sides of the Temple/Stupa Kaudi there is two dots marks, a sign of quality checking and hardness of the metal.
The Walnut wood handle is well used and has a crack on each side yet the handle stays solid and the parts do not separate and are fitted to the steel bolster.
Overall 46 cm long, Blade 34,5 cm, Blade (incl bolster) 11,5 cm.
The original classical issue scabbard is of brown leather. It is unmarked and in good condition, a minor hole in the back of ca 1-2 mm and ofcourse a metal tip.
A serious Kukri with a long history!
Jai Kukri - Ayo Gurkhali!
What would the World have been without the Gurkhas?
Please support the Gurkha Welfare Trust.
Each purchase helps Gurkha Antiques to support the GWT and their amazing work in Nepal.
Possible influences of the Kaudi...Indo-Persian temple/tower rooftops, Nepalese Stupas:
The aim of Gurkha Antiques is to:
share a passion & knowledge;
to learn & educate,
encourage & inspire,
appreciate & serve,
fellow researchers, collectors, enthusiasts and the general public about topics of Himalayan History & Cultural Heritage, specially in regards to Antiques, Arms & Artifacts from Nepal, the home of the Gurkhas (Gorkhas / Gorkhalis).