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Old 4th June 2017, 12:06 AM   #1
CharlesS
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Default Another Moro Bangkung Variation

Here is a nice smaller bangkung that I picked up recently. I believe it is pre-WW2, but from the looks of it and the temper lines, I think it was never meant as a weapon, but as a utility chopper. I especially like the chiseling at the end of the blade.

Scabbard rattan and hilt cording are restored.

Comments welcome.

Dimensions:
Overall length: 23in.
Blade length: 16.25in.
Widest point of the blade: 2.5in.
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Old 4th June 2017, 03:22 AM   #2
Battara
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I agree that it is pre-WWII. I love the scabbard and the carving at the end of the blade.
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Old 4th June 2017, 08:18 AM   #3
kai
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Thanks for sharing, Charles!

The blade looks heavy - how much does it weight?

Max. thickness would be of interest, too!

Regards,
Kai
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Old 4th June 2017, 02:46 PM   #4
Ian
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Hi Charles:

Very nice example. Bangkung do come in a variety of sizes and Cato makes the point that many of the less common Moro weapons were derived from tools originally designed for chopping or slashing vegetation.

I think this one was designed as a weapon. The nicely carved scabbard and the silver (?) punto underneath the woven grip seem too refined for a simple tool.

The carving on the wooden section of the hilt seems a bit unusual for Moro work and reminds me of the hulu rumpung seen on sikin panjang. The file work on the end of the blade is also unusual for Moro work. I've seen similar work on the end of small T'boli kampilans, and I have a couple of choppers from mainland SE Asia with similar designs. One of these is probably from Vietnam and has some features on the hilt suggesting Chinese influence.

I like this bangkung -- it is a very interesting piece that seems to have elements suggesting cross-cultural influences.

Ian.
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Old 5th June 2017, 02:21 PM   #5
CharlesS
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Thanks for the observation Ian!

I was basing my "tool/chopper" analysis strictly on the location of the tempered edge, noting it was nowhere close to the tip. What you see in the 2nd photo of the temper line is the end of it(where the glare starts). I would have assumed that a fighting blade would carry to temper on a flat line edge all the way to the tip like we see on most kampillans. But, you have a good point in that it is a bit "dressy" for a working blade.
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Old 5th June 2017, 05:04 PM   #6
Ian
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Thanks for the additional information Charles. The possible forward extension of the hardened edge seemed to be obscured by the glare in the original photo. I did not realize that the hardening stopped there.

Yes, it seems a bit odd that the hardened edge would not extend all the way to the tip. It's not uncommon to see a hardened edge stop short of the hilt, but not short of the tip. Is the blade etched or is this the natural polish? Etching/further etching might show something more towards the tip.

Ian
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Old 5th June 2017, 08:19 PM   #7
CharlesS
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Ian,

It is impossible to see the end of them temper because of that glare, but that is exactly where it ends...and the blade has been etched.

I didn't even realize the pic looked that way until reading your comment.

Thanks again for your input. The bangkung handles nicely, and, like you, I like the chiseled end. Btw, the punto is made of brass.
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Old 6th June 2017, 05:13 PM   #8
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Hello Charles,

very nice piece! And very unusual that the hardened edge don't went until the tip.

Regards,
Detlef
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