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Old 12th December 2004, 07:48 PM   #1
Mark
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Smile A beautiful Burmese dha dated 1798

Here is a little something that I just picked up, with some help from our man on the ground in Thailand. It is a Burmese story dha, with a stag horn handle and pommel, equisitely carved. The scabbard is chased silver, with eight panels on each side depicting different figures which I think are either characters in the story shown on the blade, or are nat (spirits). There are eight on each side, all different, but some similar which might be different depictions of the same person, and there is a deer on each side in the last panel. The scabbard has an engraved dedication: "This sword belongs to Tha Toe Thi Yi General Min Hla Ye Khaung 1160." The Burmese date corresponds to 1798 in the Julian calender. The blade needs some cleaning, but other than that (and a sloppy repair with epoxy that I am slowly removing), it is in perfect condition). Enjoy.
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Old 13th December 2004, 12:40 AM   #2
cylord21
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Thumbs up Dha treasure

Speechless, pictures tells it all. This is the second old dha for real i have seen in this style, quality and age, the real thing. Both have seven panels of highest quality deep chased silver depicting figures and characters on blade. On the other one i saw (and missed as it was for sale) the scabbard was not dedicated but signed by a famous silver smiths from that time. The hilt has in the middle a plain ivory with nice old patina, not carved, and smaller chased silver panels with figures like in the scabbard at both ends. The pommel is ball shaped silver chased all over in floral motif. Congratulation. By the way, help from the man in Thailand to find a similar piece is more than welcome.
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Old 13th December 2004, 01:03 AM   #3
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W W!!!
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Old 13th December 2004, 01:15 AM   #4
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Outstanding, Mark! That is absolutely beautiful. Congratulations!

Have you been able to turn up anything about that general?
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Old 13th December 2004, 06:58 AM   #5
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What a beautifull Sword. I know next to nothing about Burmese edged weapons...but when I see this, It makes me want to learn .

Outstanding...thanks for posting.

Regards

Karni
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Old 13th December 2004, 12:00 PM   #6
wilked aka Khun Deng
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Thumbs up Gorgeous!

It gets better looking every time I see it. I have yet to see it's equal in a story dha. What I'm sure Mark is too humble to tell you is that a professor in Chiang Mai had specifically requested this sword from the dealer to use in an upcoming book he will publish on the swords of the North. He at least thought it was historically significant.

This is the fourth time I've seen a similiar face on the pommel of a asian sword. Two were on the pommel caps of japanese style thai swords of high ranking individuals and another on a dha. Anybody have any ideas where it comes from?

Cylord email sent.
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Old 14th December 2004, 02:49 PM   #7
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What a wonderful dha! Btw, what is the head on the pommel supposed to represent?

Also, there are figures on the scabbard. Do those mean anything?
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Old 14th December 2004, 04:01 PM   #8
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The face is a demon of some sort -- the boar-like tusks are usually supposed to indicate a demon in Asian art. Demons are not necessarity "demonic" as we understand it. Perhaps a better work would be "ogre." They turn up in a very of the Burmese myths and legends.



The figures, as you can see from this one close-up, are very detailed and each is different. There are six humans, male and female, two demons/orgres, one male one female, and two stags. There are no clear "attributes," such as you might see in depections of Hindu gods and heroes to tell you if they are supposed to someone particular. But I suspect that they represent either specific characters in a story, or possibly spirits (called nat in Burmese), of which there are over a hundred. The investigation continues ...
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Old 15th December 2004, 02:23 PM   #9
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Thanks Mark. I'm really enjoying this dha. If you have time, please do post more pictures/details of this dha... its simply amazing!
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Old 26th December 2004, 06:42 PM   #10
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Portuguese settlers in Birmania, being or not mercenaries, are more abundantly quoted in earlier chronicles. They got there around 1512 and soon they engaged in either side of the conflicts between Sion and Pegu, having in their skills the use of firearms. Later by the end of that century, two portuguese adventurers joined the armies of Mim Razagi, in conquering the kingdom of Pegu. One of them, Salvador de Sousa, was named King of Pegu, and the other,Filipe Nicote, was given Syriam, a river island harbour in the Erawady river delta, building a fort and a town that still exists. He was impaled in 1608.
Any relation between this and the mercenary quoted by Mark?
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Old 26th December 2004, 11:17 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fernando
Portuguese settlers in Birmania, being or not mercenaries, are more abundantly quoted in earlier chronicles. They got there around 1512 and soon they engaged in either side of the conflicts between Sion and Pegu, having in their skills the use of firearms. Later by the end of that century, two portuguese adventurers joined the armies of Mim Razagi, in conquering the kingdom of Pegu. One of them, Salvador de Sousa, was named King of Pegu, and the other,Filipe Nicote, was given Syriam, a river island harbour in the Erawady river delta, building a fort and a town that still exists. He was impaled in 1608.
Any relation between this and the mercenary quoted by Mark?


Yes, I believe Filipe Nicote is the one I am remembering.
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