Ceremonial sword exceeds expected price at auction
A weapon belonging to Cambridgeshire-born Major Soame Gambier Jenyns of the 13th Light Dragoons - a survivor of the famous Charge of the Light Brigade - was sold at Willingham Auctions at the weekend.
The presentation sword, which has the major's name inscribed on the blade, was given to the present, private owner by his grandfather and had been expected to fetch between £400-£800. It eventually sold for £3,400 on Saturday (January 5).
Soame Gambier Jenyns was a captain during the Charge of the Light Brigade on October 25, 1854, part of the Crimean War. When two senior offices were killed in the charge, Jenyns assumed command of the 13th, meaning it was his task to get the remaining troops back to British lines.
Born in1826, the widely-respected SGJ was the son of George Jenyns, of Bottisham Hall, Cambridgeshire, and his wife Maria Jane, daughter of Sir James Gambier. He died suddenly - possibly after an asthma attack - at Much Wenlock, Shropshire, on November 26, 1873, aged 47. Soame Gambier Jenyns was buried in the family vault in Bottisham Church on December 3, 1873.
Stephen Drake, auctioneer and valuer at Willingham Auctions, told the Cambridge Independent: "The sword was presented to this gentleman because he was a survivor of the Charge of the Light Brigade. He was a very famous man and, especially being local as well, it's quite an important thing. The historical value is brilliant and makes it an interesting lot to go into auction."
Stephen "It's a shame it wasn't the sword he took into battle," he said, "because obviously that would go for a phenomenal amount, but it's still an important piece of military history."
The sword belonging to this British military hero will be going up for auction on January 5, 2019, lot number 1101.