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Old 10th December 2014, 04:26 PM   #17
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: California.
Posts: 379
Default Gardner, Von Zonneveld, Tirri reference to p. bengkok

See Gardner, "Keris and other Malay Weapons", plate 58. The drawing shows the parang bengkok (Java) #6 sharp along the hook side. The parang bengkok (Bali) #1 is ambiguous about the edge. Gardner doesn't claim to have actually seen this weapon.

A. Von Z. p98 image 382 (btw, this is the identical drawing from Gardner) describes the back as straight and the edge as "between S-shaped and concave." (I.e., on the hook side) This is in concord with Gardner's illustration, or at least we share the same interpretation. Curiously, Albert says the "blade's tip is curved sharply upwards." If the sharp edge is the curved side, it would seem correct to say that it "curves downwards." Yes? This suggests to me that Albert was working only with Gardner's text (which he cites) and never actually held the sword himself.

Tirri shows us the first real photo I can find in published sources. On p.423-424 there are depictions of three weapons from Bali. Figure 300a is a Teabuna and figure 300 is a Kudi Tranchang, both with a superficial resemblance to our subject weapon which is shown in figure 300b. However, compare the hilts and other features and I think you'll agree our subject weapon seems out of place.

I feel like I once saw a similar hilt on a Laotian or Cambodian weapon, but unfortunately I cannot recall anything more specific.


Dave A
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