Bataireacht is the art of stick fighting in Ireland, a form of martial arts. It is believed to descent from broadsword training. In the 18th century Irish peasants bonded as factions which would engage in melees on ceremonial and festive occasions, frequently resulting in serious injuries. Through the 19th century, the factions coalesced into two factions, the Caravat and Shanavest who engaged in criminal activity and fought periodically. The greater picture was that of the Irish peasants against the land owners, most of which were English which in its simplest form continued into the 20th century with remnants still remaining. This shillelagh dates to the 19th century, the period of the factions. At the time, every man owned one and they were made lovingly with care in hardening the wood and developing its fine glossy black surface using lard, pigeon blood and soot. It is 20 3/4” long, made from the trunk and limb of a blackthorn. It shows significant use including grip wear and impact damage to the bark. Particularly fine glossy patina which was prized in these.