Stock Ref: AST 1856

A very good example of a pre WW1 Officers Dirk by a noted maker, with detailed documentation belonging to Lieutenant Hugh Clifford Hollis Coxe.

35.5cm (17.75”) unfullered straight blade with flat back and spear point. The last 23cm (9”) having a flattened diamond profile. The blade is etched on one side with the crowned royal cypher for Edward VII, scrolling foliage and the makers name. On the other a crowned fouled anchor =, scrolling foliage and a stylised proof button.

Brass curved cross guard ending in acorn finials with a central lozenge containing a crowned fouled anchor surrounded by a laurel wreath. Lion head pommel and mane back piece, with sword knot ring. White fish skin grip bound with copper/brass wire.

Maker: Gieves, Matthews and Seagrove Ltd – London Portsmouth & Devonport (Traded under this name from 21 George Street, Hanover Square, London between 1907 – 1911) They were supplied swords and Dirks by Wilkinson.

Dated: September 1908.

Black leather scabbard with brass mounts. The upper mount with two loose rings, and a spring clip. The mount is stamped 26 on the top and has the owners initials HCHC.

The Dirk and scabbard are in good condition for their age. The blade is clean and the etchings are clear. The hilt and grip are in very good condition and firm on the tang. The scabbard leather has aging and the seam has been repaired. The brass mounts are intact although the chape has staining. One screw on the spring clip has been replaced.

Hugh Clifford Hollis Coxe was born in Bengal India on the 9 April 1891, the son of Henry R Hollis and Louisa Carolie Coxe. By 1901 Mrs Cox and her family were living in Eastbourne. In September 1908 Hugh was a Midshipman, and it is probable that the Dirk dates from this date. He was promoted to Lieutenant in December 1911 serving on the Superb, and in September 1912 he was on the Hope. He was then posted as a Lieutenant to the Formidable a battleship in September 1913.

The Formidable was torpedoed by U24 on the 1 January 1915 about 25 Miles off Portland and sank with only 233 survivors from her crew of 780. Sadly Lieut. Coxe was killed. He is commemorated on the Chatham War Memorial. He was 23 years old. He was awarded the 1914 Star, War and Victory Medals.


  • Medal Records
  • Birth and Baptism Record
  • 2 x Census returns
  • Navy List HMS Formidable 1914
  • 3 x Casualty Documents
  • Probate Record
  • HMS Formidable
  • Dive records for HMS Formidable

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