Ethnographic Arms & Armour

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-   -   So... real or fake? (http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=17299)

driftwould 1st June 2013 10:42 AM

So... real or fake?
 
Hi all! I'm really interested in this kind of blade but am quite worried about buying fakes. What do you think? Real or fake? Why? Thanks a lot!

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Nor...=p2047675.l2557

trenchwarfare 3rd June 2013 06:07 PM

Welcome aboard DW. There is no short answer to your question. Firstly, this type blade is not my area. However as true of this, and any other piece, the question is: Is it an authentic antique, or a newly made piece, made to look old? The answer is, impossible to tell. If made in the traditional manner, by a skilled maker, and properly patinated, you'll never know. Not via photos. Even in person, without lots of hands-on experience, it's getting harder, and harder. The fakers are getting better and better. Technology, has caught up with cheap labor. "Antiques" can now be cranked out, on a production basis. Sorry, wish I could help.

VANDOO 3rd June 2013 08:15 PM

THIS IS AN UNUSUAL COMBINATION THE SMALL KNIFE IS A OLD FORM FROM ALGERIA THEY ARE SOMETIMES FOUND IN A SET OF TWO USUALLY ALL STEEL. THE LARGER KNIFE HAS SOME OF THE SAME DECORATION PATTERNS AND TECKNIQUES USED ON WHAT IS OFTEN REFERRED TO AS A WEDDING NIMCHA. THIS IS ALSO A ALGERIAN FORM MOST WEDDING NIMCHA HAVE A CURVED BLADE AND ARE FOR SHOW NOT FOR USE. THIS EXAMPLE HAS A STRAIGHT BLADE AND THE FORM OF THE HANDLE IS DIFFERENT FROM THE NIMCHA FORM. IT DOSEN'T LOOK LIKE A NEW TOURIST ITEM BUT IS PROBABLY 1930'S AT OLDEST. PERHAPS SOMEONE WITH MORE KNOWLEGE IN THIS FIELD CAN PIN IT DOWN FOR YOU.

driftwould 4th June 2013 04:03 AM

THAT was helpful (and a couple more questions)
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by VANDOO
THIS IS AN UNUSUAL COMBINATION THE SMALL KNIFE IS A OLD FORM FROM ALGERIA THEY ARE SOMETIMES FOUND IN A SET OF TWO USUALLY ALL STEEL. THE LARGER KNIFE HAS SOME OF THE SAME DECORATION PATTERNS AND TECKNIQUES USED ON WHAT IS OFTEN REFERRED TO AS A WEDDING NIMCHA. THIS IS ALSO A ALGERIAN FORM MOST WEDDING NIMCHA HAVE A CURVED BLADE AND ARE FOR SHOW NOT FOR USE. THIS EXAMPLE HAS A STRAIGHT BLADE AND THE FORM OF THE HANDLE IS DIFFERENT FROM THE NIMCHA FORM. IT DOSEN'T LOOK LIKE A NEW TOURIST ITEM BUT IS PROBABLY 1930'S AT OLDEST. PERHAPS SOMEONE WITH MORE KNOWLEGE IN THIS FIELD CAN PIN IT DOWN FOR YOU.


That helps a lot, thanks! How did you get to know that much? It might not be "enough" for a solid answer, but it sure beats the heck out of my absolute 0 knowledge!

For me, at the beginning of a collection, I'm ok with a piece like this as long as it was made in the real place, by the real people, using real, time honored techniques and not some low quality, tourist specific knock off technique. For me, at least so far, the pieces are about capturing the cultural artistry and the history it represents, rather than specifically needing to be super old. Of course, older is better, but still...

On that note, I really am at the beginning of collecting, so insights and thoughts on increasing the mileage I get out of a particular purchase would be really helpful! I'm not buying for re-sale value or dollar value, but would like insights into what other people consider when collecting things like this.

Also, is there a good source of information about what constitutes a reasonable price for a broad variety of this kind of thing, especially across different cultures? I'd also like to ask the same question about telling fakes from real items and the quality of a given item.

Thanks again for your insights, I already feel I have a better appreciation of this piece! Incidentally, do you think I got a reasonably good price? With shipping, it's $147 US.

Emanuel 4th June 2013 05:22 PM

5 Attachment(s)
Hi there and welcome to the forum,

I agree this is a variation of the "wedding nimcha". I got one of the highly curved kind (see attached images from Oriental-Arms) in 2006 at just over a third of the ebay listing price. The blade is cut to shape from sheet metal, it isn't forged to shape.

I believe these are derived from the Kabyle (Algerian) flyssa. At some point after the French occupation of Algeria, arms manufacture was banned. Smiths and craftrsmen that used to make the nice old swords then started making smaller knife-sized daggers of similar construction and style. Over the decades these were simplified more and more until the geometric patterns carved into wooden scabbards were replaced by brass wire and coloured decorations. The blades went from forged 1cm thick sabres to 5mm thin blades cut to shape. The reason these are called nimcha is that they often have a form of the "dog-head" handle and curved guard seen on the nimcha sabres.

Search through the forum for these terms: flyssa, nimcha, khodme, bou-saada for lots of info on what might have been the genesis of these knives.

Regards,
Emanuel

Freddy 6th June 2013 07:06 PM

4 Attachment(s)
Welcome to the forum.

Here's the double knife Vandoo talked about. This set is relatively small, measuring about 21,5 cm in length.

The knives are all steel.

VANDOO 7th June 2013 06:04 AM

THANKS FOR POSTING THE PCI'S FREDDY. :) I HAVE LONG WONDERED WHAT THE USE AND NAME OF THESE KNIVES WAS. THERE IS LITTLE INFORMATION ON THEM WHAT LITTLE I KNOW IS IN OLDER POSTS. THE MOST INFORMATION I FOUND WAS IN A OLD BANNERMAN CATALOG WHICH SAID LITTLE OTHER THAN ALGERIA AS THE ORIGION. PERHAPS A FORUM MEMBER OR LURKER MAY HAVE AND SHARE FURTHER INFORMATION. THESE LITTLE STEEL KNIVES HAVE ALWAYS IMPRESSED ME WITH THE WORKMANSHIP.
A NAME FOR THE KNIFE ORIGINATEING THIS POST AND ITS USE WOULD ALSO BE A GOOD THING.

Andreas 7th June 2013 07:36 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by VANDOO
THANKS FOR POSTING THE PCI'S FREDDY. :) I HAVE LONG WONDERED WHAT THE USE AND NAME OF THESE KNIVES WAS. THERE IS LITTLE INFORMATION ON THEM WHAT LITTLE I KNOW IS IN OLDER POSTS. THE MOST INFORMATION I FOUND WAS IN A OLD BANNERMAN CATALOG WHICH SAID LITTLE OTHER THAN ALGERIA AS THE ORIGION. PERHAPS A FORUM MEMBER OR LURKER MAY HAVE AND SHARE FURTHER INFORMATION. THESE LITTLE STEEL KNIVES HAVE ALWAYS IMPRESSED ME WITH THE WORKMANSHIP.
A NAME FOR THE KNIFE ORIGINATEING THIS POST AND ITS USE WOULD ALSO BE A GOOD THING.


Although they look more like steak knives, these are actually Kabyle razors. I dont know if they have a specific name but razor in Kabyle is asettal (plural isettalen).
Regards
Andreas

VANDOO 7th June 2013 06:28 PM

MANY THANKS ! ANDREAS A OLD MYSTERY SOLVED AT LAST. :D ARE THESE STILL BEING MADE OR USED OR HAS MORE MODERN RAZORS REPLACED THEM?. I ASSUME MANY BARBERS STILL PLY THEIR TRADE IN ALGERIA BUT DO THEY ADHERE TO THE OLD TRADITIONAL EQUIPMENT OR OPT FOR NEWER.
THE BEARD IS AN IMPORTANT PART OF BEING A MAN AND WOULD NEED TO BE KEPT PROPERLY GROOMED AND IN SOME A SHAVED HEAD WAS ALSO DESIRED SO A RAZOR WOULD BE IMPORTANT AND OFTEN NEEDED.


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