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I had to laugh when I saw this vintage Valentine's card which incidentally was given by an ex WW2 commando to his beloved some time in the early 1950's

Sweet isn't it but hey, look at that knife.... here's a close up look see-->>>>>

fairbarn skyes command knife

Just look at that length of blade and the characteristic oval wave cross guard and I have to ask whether or not there was a mixed message from the giver of this card.   Affectionados of WW2, SOE, commandos and all that will no doubt see  what I see for the knife is I believe a Fairbairn-Sykes commando knife.
OK, the ricasso isn't well established and the hilt is a slightly different shape but the oval wave cross guard and  double edged dagger blade with medial ridge just screams Fairbairn - Sykes.  
Indeed, the cross guard is indicative of the Holy Grail to knife collectors for it signifies the limited production run 1st Pattern FS fighting knife,  introduced during 1940 and produced by Wilkinson Sword.  The Fairbairn–Sykes  (F-S) is a double-edged fighting knife that combines the best parts of a poignard and a dagger.  It was designed by William Ewart Fairbairn and Eric Anthony Sykes during their time whilst serving with the Shanghai Municipal Police during the 1930s.

fairbairn sykes fighting knife paratrooper sas commando

The F–S fighting knife was made famous during World War II when issued to British Commandos, Paratroopers and the SAS especially for the 1944 Normandy landings and it's optimised design made it perfect for surprise attack and suppression fighting.

As Fairbairn stated in his seminal book published in 1942.."In close-quarters fighting there is no more deadly weapon than the knife. In choosing a knife there are two important factors to bear in mind: balance and keenness. The hilt should fit easily in your hand, and the blade should not be so heavy that it tends to drag the hilt from your fingers in a loose grip. It is essential that the blade have a sharp stabbing point and good cutting edges, because an artery torn through (as against a clean cut) tends to contract and stop the bleeding. If a main artery is cleanly severed, the wounded man will quickly lose consciousness and die.'

And so it was that the length of the F-S knife blade was optimised to be able  penetrate the body after passing through the 3 in (7.6 cm) of the thickest clothing that was anticipated to be worn in the war, namely that of Soviet greatcoats.  

With this sort of performance you can skewer your Valentine's ticker no problem.......... romantic eh?




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