Date: ca. 1500–1511
Culture: Egyptian or Syrian
Dimensions: L. 20 1/4 in. (51.5 cm); W. 4 5/8 in. (11.7 cm); Wt. 1 lb. 12 oz. (802.0 g)
Classification: Shafted Weapons
Credit Line: Bequest of George C. Stone, 1935
Accession Number: 36.25.1961
Ensigns like this one, which often served as finials for standards, were used to identify units of the army on the battlefield and in military reviews before the sultan. This ensign bears a Qur’anic inscription and the name of a Syrian emir, Sayfi al-Din Tarabay, who is recorded to have commissioned a mausoleum in Cairo in 1503/4. This is probably one of the many ensigns that were taken as booty by the Ottomans when they defeated the Mamluks in 1517.