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Old 7th December 2014, 08:21 PM   #1
Marcus
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Default Tebu or not Tebu

The original attribution of this sword was to the Tebu (Toubou) people of Chad, although with the provision that it was much longer than typical for a Tebu weapon. It is made from a single piece of steel from the pommel to the unsharpened tip. I sent pictures to an anthropologist friend who is working with people in Chad and he showed the pictures to natives in northern Chad, the former Kanem empire. They were of the opinion it was not Toubou. His e-mail said “It is traditional Gorand from Bourku”. All I could get from Wikipedia on the Gorand was that “the Daza are also known as the Goran in Chad”. Artzi has a couple other similar swords, anyone know about weapons of the Daza (Goran)?
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Old 7th December 2014, 09:10 PM   #2
Martin Lubojacky
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Hi Marcus,
I saw identical sword in the museum in Chartum - but this means nothing - there was no allocation. So sorry for not being useful. Nevertheless that sword was old, I would say 19 th century.
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Old 7th December 2014, 09:23 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Lubojacky
...Nevertheless that sword was old, I would say 19 th century.
Martin

The age was another thing I was curious about. Thanks.
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Old 10th December 2014, 08:01 PM   #4
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Hi Marcus,

A few points, there are a number of sub types within this general family of "skull crusher" pommeled swords and daggers.

It's always great to get "on the ground" information from someone in the area. These could well be Daza, although the Daza are a sub group within the Tebu along with the Teda.

Similar swords can be found in North Cameroon as well.

The large midrib is a design choice that makes quite a bit of sense (and not present on the daggers) due to the length of these swords. In a way both the daggers and the swords follow a similar design thesis to the Roman gladius and spatha. The latter of course being for cavalry use typically.

I suspect much the same for these long Chadic swords. The Teda and Daza both have long equestrian traditions. They are nice looking things, I use to have one myself which I've attached.
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Old 10th December 2014, 11:23 PM   #5
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Default similar indeed

Yes, your sword is very similar. By the way, my friend in Chad adds that the Goran (or Gouran, it is all phonetic) are distinctively different from the Toubou, the Toubou are a bit further north. And generally lighter skinned, more Libyan in features, less Bantu features.
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Old 11th December 2014, 07:04 AM   #6
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Hi Marcus,

The term Tebu, or Toubou, is actually a relatively late term, but most commonly is tied to the Teda.

However when I say the Teda and Daza are related, it refers to the linguistic group more than anything. The Teda reside in the north, the Daza to the south.

So you friend may well be making the Teda/Daza distinction.

I do think Goran is likely to refer to the Daza although I have to admit Chad is not my area of speciality.
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Old 11th December 2014, 08:28 AM   #7
colin henshaw
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Good-looking swords. The metal has that grey, softish look of native-smelted iron...is this a likelihood ?
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