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Chassepot M1866 Sword-Bayonet

Charles dP

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Hi everyone 

On a mini break in Swanage I spoiled myself and bought an M1866 Chassepot bayonet in a little maritime antique store.


I have done a bit of digging and come up with the following:

There is no engraving along the spine so this was not made by one of the four big state arms manufacturers but by a contracting company. Unfortunately this also makes the year and place of manufacture difficult to tell.


Though there are a few small chips on the curved edge, the blade has not been sharpened so it may never have been actually issued to a unit.


There is an obvious serial number on the left of the guard which looks like z0 507(3?). There appears to be a second serial number on the right guard so it may have been captured and re-issued by the Germans during the Franco-Prussian war of 1870-1871 as many were.

The second serial number is very shallow and difficult to see/photograph. It looks like it may be



At the base of the blade on the left is an stamp which looks like an upside down P (upside down relative to all the other stamps I have seen)




There is no frog (just 2 dents) or serial number on the scabbard so it is impossible to tell if this originally came with the bayonet.



There is a small five-pointed star on the quillion (which may be an inspection mark) and signs of another lower down which has been mostly worn away



So that is my present to myself. Does anyone know more about these bayonets and  could they please shed some more light on this? A promising dead link for French bayonet serial numbers I found on greatwarforum.org is http://www.old-smithy.info/bayonets/HTNL DOCUMNETS/1866_chassepot.htm may have had some info, but, even correcting the typos it is still dead. Anyone perhaps have an alternative link?



Edited by Charles dP
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"The way we win matters" (Ender Wiggins) Orson Scott Card


Nos qui libertate donati nescimus quid constat

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  • Charles dP changed the title to Chassepot M1866 Sword-Bayonet

You can try here for info;



or here;




You'll have to sign up to be a member if you want to post your pictures or ask questions though.

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Thanks Gazz. I’ll have a browse and see what I can learn before joining. I have just discovered that the Z prefix means that the bayonet would have been issued without a rifle to e.g. medical corps, musician, artillery operator, etc.

Thanks Alan. That is where I started my search and is a very useful site.

"The way we win matters" (Ender Wiggins) Orson Scott Card


Nos qui libertate donati nescimus quid constat

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