Originally Posted by ariel
I would put it a bit differently: there are collectors who are interested in the physicality of objects ( materials, wealth of decorations, harmony and beauty etc.) The recent book from Al-Sabah collection is the closest example I can quickly recall.
And there are collectors who are interested in history and ethnography.
And there are others in between.
Personally, I am not into beautiful weapons without a "dark past", kisses of time, hints of mutual penetration of cultures and, yes, people behind them. I cannot imagine ignoring people who made and owned them and the circumstances they went through. I probably got more books on weapons and countries they came from than the swords:-)
For me, disrespecting the "villagers" who made their often primitive weapons and ignoring the names they used to call their weapons in favor of some European one, no matter how convenient it is, is objectionable and counterproductive.
Yes, we do use a lot of European-invented monikers, but this is simply because of our ignorance. If possible, we should strive for the truth.
Kind of like a Rumpelstiltskin principle: know the name, and you get ownership of the object.
My guess is that most of the collectors are somwhere inbetween. Well... at least I hope I am...
As with regards to your statement about using "European-invented monikers" because of our ignorance... I beg to differ.
While in some cases, it might be the truth, in some other it may be very far from it.
Take ifor example the KARUD. Is this an European-invented moniker?! I don't think so since even you in your original posting demonstrated that in fact it is a phonetical transliteration of the word KARD, which in turn is exactly how the natives used to call this type of knife (as Dmitry probably demonstrated in his paper).
Moreover, since the locals didn't have any specific name for this very specific blade, and they simply called it Kard (using "correct" transliteration)/Karud (using phonetic transliteration)/knife, I don't see how it can be disrespectful to them using exactly their name for their weapon. And in order to distinguish it from another one of their weapons, we use the phonetic transliterated term "Karud" for it as opposed to the literary transliterated term "Kard" for the other type of weapon.
This way, not only that we acknowledge and use the names given by the original makers/users of these knives, but we succeed in distinguishing between the two distinct variations of knife, where the original makers/users of the knives didn't distinguish (probably because they didn't feel the need to distinguish).
Last but not least, I beg to differ with the very idea of the title of this thread:
"Karud, the weapon that did not exist."
Not only that the "KARUD" exists and existed, but it was also CALLED exactly like this by its original makers/owners, exactly the same way the "KARD" exists and was WRITTEN like this by its original makers/owners!
Your whole argumet in the original posting is not about whether the "KARUD" existed or not, but about what is the "correct" way to transliterate a word: using the literal transliteration or the phonetic transliteration?!
You could rewrite your initial posting replacing "Karud" with "Kard" and attempting to make the point that the term "kard" does not exist and is merely a wrong ad-literam transliteration of the word "karud" as it is heard by our ears.
At least that's how I see things...