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Old 1st January 2018, 10:05 PM   #13
A. G. Maisey
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 4,911

I know nothing at all about bangkungs, and next to nothing about Bugis tosan aji (Jav.), but I do have a copy of "Senjata Pusaka Bugis" -- Ahmad Ubbe, I am unclear on publication date, but it was around 2011-2012.

There is a text chapter where the badik is treated, but Bugis people (apparently) do not name the badik as badik, rather it is named as "Kawali". In this text chapter I can find no mention of a "bangkung/bankung".

But in the photographic chapter of this book that deals with "Kawali" the names used are "Badik & Bangkung". The chapter title is "Koleksi Badik & Bangkung", content of the chapter is a number of photos with descriptions.

In this chapter of collection items, most items using the word "bangkung" are coupled to "badik" :- "Bangkung/Badik". Some use the term "Badik/Bangkung Raja". Only one item is named as "Pusaka Bangkung".

One item is named "Badik/Bangkung Gantara" , but it is a Badik form that I believe most Javanese scholars of tosan aji would claim as Javanese, and its form is not in agreement with the other items named as "bangkung".

The predominant form of the items that use "bangkung" in the name is a slim blade that has a waist and a swelling towards the tip, these blades appear to be slightly longer than normal.

If we then read the text that treats the Kawali known as "Kawali Raja" we find that this text seems to be referring to a Kawali (ie, badik) that has the form and proportions of the Kawali that is mostly named as "Bangkung/Badik".

Wilkinson's Classical Malay dictionary does not list either "bangkung" or "bankung", but it does list "bangkong", given as "a Bugis parang; a short, broad bladed knife". Wilkinson also lists "bengkang, bengkok" which he gives as "crooked".

In Javanese one of the meanings of the word "bengkung/bengkuk" is "bent/curved".

It should be noted that in Malay languages there is a high degree of interchangeability, inconsistency in the use of both vowels and consonants.

Confusing? Yes, I agree, but "Senjata Pusaka Bugis" does need more than the average degree of perseverance to come to terms with its content.

I very strongly suspect that the name "bangkung/bankung" is in fact not a name at all, but rather a description, or at least, was originally a description that may now be accepted as a name.

When I look at the items under discussion here I would have only one name for them:- "golok".

When we use Colonial Era and before sources as references we are walking in a minefield.
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