Setting: French occupation, Nguyen dynasty Vietnam mid 19thc - early 20thc
Context (Event Photos, Period Sources)
* Rodell online
"In the early nineteenth century another foreign influence affected Vietnamese dao - France. After the French bankrolled the establishment of the Nguyen dynasty in 1802, lion-head pommels began appearing. These sabers are essentially European in design, with 'D' shaded [SIC] knucklebows. This French pattern is overlaid and decorated in the local Vietnamese fashion, usually with embossed silver fittings on the scabbard and hilt and mother of pearl inlay in lacquer or rose wood scabbards. Other examples have plain tortoise shell covered scabbards. This style of saber has a scabbard chape with an usually sharp upward accelerating curve terminating in a sharp end. This is quite different from sabers of European design which tend to have chapes with rounded ends. This pointed chape is most likely a hold-over from Ming Chinese influences."