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Ancient Battle Stirrup Brass

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    Posted 4 years ago

    (57 items)

    This is a bit of a mystery item that I purchased from a very old man in the Dominican Republic last year. He runs a small shop where he makes silver and stone jewellery, and also has a few antique items for sale. He told me that he thinks this was a cover to wear on the foot when riding the horse in battle in his broken English. I translate that into a stirrup of some sort. It's completely made of brass, and you can tell it's very very old, although it appears it may have been found in pieces, and has been re-assembled many years ago with some old, and more modern screws/bolts which show on the inside. I don't think it's complete, but it's an interesting piece of history.
    Thank you all for your input, and questions! I've added a few more images, and the "item" is about 9" total length and 8" total height. Finally, this item may not actually be a foot stirrup for a horse at all, this was the old man's best guess when I asked him "what's this piece for?" Bear in mind that this was not a tourist shop, in fact in two weeks that I was staying nearby, I never saw another customer.

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    1. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      Did he give you any idea what era it might be from? It doesn't look anywhere near sturdy enough to be a stirrup. Then again I have been called ancient and I am not as sturdy as I once was.
    2. Watchsearcher Watchsearcher, 4 years ago
      I think the metal looks very thin for it's stated purpose. All the screws concern me.
    3. CanCollect CanCollect, 4 years ago
      Thanks for your comments folks, I had the same thoughts, however it is incredibly strong, the bottom of it is bent from pressure in it but still very strong in the rounded oval sort of shape. The old man did not know what era it came from, he often took in antique items as trades for jewellery which is why he had a showcase with some antique items in it. Wish I had more answers. The screws involved as I said, you can tell are very old as well, so I figure many years ago, someone in more modern times re-assembled this to what it once was using screws.
    4. SpiritBear, 4 years ago
      I'm afraid that my concerns are those of the group. To me, it looks like something a jeweler, skilled in fine metal-working as they are supposed to be, would make to sell to tourists out of whatever he had laying around that looked old.
      That spike would probably impale the horse. That's something you'd NEVER want to do.
    5. Watchsearcher Watchsearcher, 4 years ago
      Could you post more pictures of the other sides and measurements?
    6. CanCollect CanCollect, 4 years ago
      Thanks for your thoughts SpiritBear however definately not this old man. His cabinet of antiques were "real" antiques from old mining lanterns, to cast iron teapots, to old german clocks. This was a curiosity item, and the reason I bought it. I did mention modern nuts & bolts were present, but I kind of lean toward an amateur restoration of some sort.
    7. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      Pictures 2 & 3 pretty clearly show the base of the item. They are more in line with it being a finial than a stirrup. I don't mean to be rude but I do need to be convinced and I am not. The metal could be bent with two fingers it is so thin.
    8. CanCollect CanCollect, 4 years ago
      Thanks for your thoughts fhrjr2, I never thought of it being a finial, and you could be correct. This is why I labelled this piece as a "mystery". However, don't be too convinced on the flexibility of the metal, it is brass, and although appears thin, it's strong as hell, and I certainly can't bend it with my hands.
    9. fhrjr2 fhrjr2, 4 years ago
      When I save the pictures and enlarge them up to 200% I see a bunch of parts that have been married so to speak. The hex nuts are so new they aren't even rusted. To put my position out in the open and clear....I think you got had if you think this is ancient. Just my opinion but until someone proves me wrong I stand by it.
    10. Watchsearcher Watchsearcher, 4 years ago
      Even if you cannot bend the metal with your hands, as you say, picture 3 showing the bottom part and the attachment of the "strap-like" part held on with a screw on each side, gives me concern that this would never hold together in any kind of use.
      Imagine the weight of a man plus his protective battle gear and weapons riding with his boot in this stirrup. Or mounting his horse which would require all his weight on a stirrup.
      i just can't see it.
    11. antiquerose antiquerose, 4 years ago
      To me -- for whatever it is does not look like a stirrup at all. Not sure what it is. Also TO ME, it looks like something new made to look old. Just my opinion....... maybe suppose to look like something like a vintage helmet finial that had horse hair coming out of the opening on each side ??? I do not know....a wild guess ???
    12. scottvez scottvez, 4 years ago
      Agree with others.

      Looks to be some modern creation from parts/ pieces with a great story.

      I have heard it often (and RE learned the lesson several times): Buy the item not the story!

      Hope it was a inexpensive lesson, some of mine were not!

    13. CanCollect CanCollect, 4 years ago
      Thanks for all the comments folks, and no I did not mortgage the house to buy this "curiosity", I just found it interesting, and wanted to find out it's origin, or for certain exactly what it is. It's really too bad the photos do not do it justice, as I still don't believe the actual material is modern. The age of the metal (the crud inside) is obvious. If someone indeed made this, or pieced it together even with scrap, then what is it? Or, what was it?

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