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Old 28th June 2008, 07:09 PM   #1
fernando
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Default Strange piece back, for coments

I have bought this piece from Freddy D'hont.
He has posted it here over one year ago, but its identification wasn't quite clarified.
http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showt...ighlight=freddy
After the various considerations were woven,the similar example sugested by Emanuel was an eBay link that was removed in the mean time ... which i regret i didn't see. The pictures shown in the thread and the sugestion that this could be an Indonesian clurit, don't seem to give the right evidence ... i would say.
This could indeed be a chopper of some kind, not certainly for light use, as its 840 grams weight ( almost two pounds) gives it a trough and an impact similar to a timber cutting axe ... if that is good for an example.
Its blade has a thickness of 10 m/m at the socket starting point. If it has not been created as a weapon, it would certainly make a formidable one.
I also don't think it has once been a pole arm, as it looks to heavy and not handy to be in the point of a long haft ... again i would say.
I thaught that, after all this time, with the incoming of new members and also more experiences had by the "veterans", someone could be familiar with this apparently strange device, as to favour me with some idea of what it could be and where it comes from.
Fernando
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Old 28th June 2008, 07:39 PM   #2
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Complete guess work but there is some similarity to the native weapons of Formosa or modern day Taiwan. It might be a good idea to get in touch with our fellow member "yanchouming" "zanchouming" if that is the right spelling. There are not many members starting with a Y or Z so it is not hard.

This is the chap----yuanzhumin

Sorry I have just read the link thread and we have been down that road. Does not mean it is completely wrong.

Last edited by Tim Simmons : 28th June 2008 at 07:50 PM. Reason: read the link
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Old 28th June 2008, 08:55 PM   #3
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That seems to be a banana knife I think? Saw something very similar in an old catalog some years back. Definately a farming tool.


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Old 29th June 2008, 06:44 PM   #4
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Thank you Tim, for your willing to help.
Thank you Lew. So i will consider this a specimen of the banana choppers family. I will be browsing the Net for the next few days, to try and find one of such kind; allways a pleasure to spot an identified specimen similar to ours.
If ever you or any member remembers where to find pictures of one of these, i will much obliged.
Thanks again.
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Old 1st July 2008, 06:35 AM   #5
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Default Weapon--- not tool for my money

Quote:
Originally Posted by LOUIEBLADES
That seems to be a banana knife I think? Saw something very similar in an old catalog some years back. Definately a farming tool.

Lew


I have had a look at Banana knives on Google and they all appear to be much lighter than this item. Also the ones shown are attached to a pole to reach the fruit. I am plugging for a weapon of some sort. The handle appears to have a groove to facilitate a retaining cord of some sort. A nice and very interesting item I hope that someone can identify it positively!
Regards Stuart
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Old 1st July 2008, 08:03 PM   #6
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Thank you Stuart.
Besides the grooves, it also has a hole through the grip to pass a lanyard of some sort.
I wish i could spot somewhere one of these things, well identified, with either a short handle or a long haft, before i go bananas myself .
Fernando
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Old 1st July 2008, 09:08 PM   #7
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Hi Fernando,
here is a modern traditional banana knife

http://www.fao.org/inpho/content/do...e/ae615e031.htm

Kind Regards David
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Old 2nd July 2008, 05:39 AM   #8
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Hi David,

I think that modern "banana knife" is a kama.

Perhaps we're getting to the point where Fernando needs to go bananas? Actually, I didn't phrase that quite right--perhaps Fernando should find a banana to harvest with it? Banana plants are soft enough that it shouldn't harm the piece. Then, if we can't say that it was designed to cut bananas, at least we can say that it can harvest bananas.

F
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Old 2nd July 2008, 05:58 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fearn
Hi David,

I think that modern "banana knife" is a kama.

Perhaps we're getting to the point where Fernando needs to go bananas? Actually, I didn't phrase that quite right--perhaps Fernando should find a banana to harvest with it? Banana plants are soft enough that it shouldn't harm the piece. Then, if we can't say that it was designed to cut bananas, at least we can say that it can harvest bananas.

F

Excellent suggestion Fearn! If Fernando is afraid of going bananas , the strange item could possibly find a new home with me. I could call it DHA-BANANA-KNIFE!!
Stuart
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Old 2nd July 2008, 07:30 AM   #10
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Here are two pictures of modern banana knives; although the first pair seem another modified form of kama, the second is a dedicated banana knife. Fernando's specimen seems of a quite similar design to the latter, given that it is of decidedly superior craftsmanship and beautifully executed - almost to the point of overkill for an agricultural implement (Although, as you can also see, all things are possible ;-)
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Old 2nd July 2008, 07:33 PM   #11
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Gentlemen, i'm afraid i am still far from solving this riddle. Somebody out there sugested it could be a flensing ( whaling) knife but, so far, no evidence shown.

Thanks for the picture and the link, David. I am impressed with those endless poles, looking like they are composed of various sections tied to eachother. However decidedly not the sort of the piece i am questioning on, right ?

Now you have done it, Fearn; with such proposition, i am close from getting banana split .

I think you called it wrong, Stuart; you should better call it DHA-NANA knife .

Thank you Ray for the support pictures; i too have a tool like the one being used by the lady; only i never thaught of spliting coconuts with it.
... this reminds me that joke of the fabulous Theodor ... never mind

I hope that further sugestions pop up; they will certainly be welcome.

Fernando
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Old 2nd July 2008, 09:01 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fernando
Gentlemen, i'm afraid i am still far from solving this riddle. Somebody out there sugested it could be a flensing ( whaling) knife but, so far, no evidence shown.

Thanks for the picture and the link, David. I am impressed with those endless poles, looking like they are composed of various sections tied to eachother. However decidedly not the sort of the piece i am questioning on, right ?

Fernando


Hi Fernando,
Flensing knives also have long handles. Wooden handled whaling implements often had the handles replaced regularly (salt water/moisture damage) and therefore would only be 'crudely' made. However, yours is a socketted fitting sugesting that this indeed at some time the blade was mounted on a pole or longer handle. The lack of heavy pitting (seen on many whaling impliments) suggests little contact with the sea.

http://www.historyshelf.org/secf/whale/13.php

The Malaysian Parang Ginah is often described as a sickle/sword perhaps your example is a similar implement (ie agricultural/weapon) or had a shorter handle fitted so it could be used as such

Regards David

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Old 3rd July 2008, 02:20 AM   #13
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Hi Fernando,

I may be prejudiced, but I know one or two things about cutting up whales. One of the big points is that, if it was used as a flensing knife, you could probably smell the dead whale on the blade. It's quite hard to get that smell off. Also, flensers are basically glaives, and they are sharpened on the outer curver (think oversized butcher knife).

Does this artifact qualify by smell? I'd gotten the impression that it was sharp on the inner curve.

Maybe it's a royal banana thwacker from some smaller kingdom somewhere.

F
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Old 4th July 2008, 07:35 PM   #14
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Thank you David.
I have been through the Parang Ginah hipothesis. Still i don't think that is it.

Thank you Fearn.
I am glad i smell nothing coming out of the piece ... for the various reasons.
Now, if this were a royal banana thwacker, it would take a big king to handle it properly

I am desperate i didn't yet see something actually similar or resembling this thing
Fernando
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Old 11th July 2008, 03:04 AM   #15
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This could a form of Arit?


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Old 11th July 2008, 05:50 PM   #16
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Thanks for your efforts Lew ; that's quite close. I'll dig into it.
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Old 11th July 2008, 08:52 PM   #17
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Well done Lew,
checking on the Arit, I found a Balinese site which stated Arit (sickle). Then I found this about the Arit and several other tools...


"...The items shown below are not really weapons, they are tools, however, when disputes arise
today and the people involved feel that they need to settle these disputes with violence, these
tools are the implements most used as weapons. In fact, in Central Jawa today it is probably
correct to say that more people are killed and wounded with the type of tools shown here than
with any other form of weapon....."

However also on this site is this a Celurit from Madura listed as a weapon.... picture below

http://www.kerisattosanaji.com/weaponsindexlist53.html

Regards David
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Old 12th July 2008, 12:53 AM   #18
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Hi David
I have also been in that page, after learning the term Arit.
Eventually the Celurit shown (same you show here) seems to be more like my example than the two Arits represented there.
But on the other hand, the Arit shown in Lews picture looks even closer, due to its blade angle not being so close.
Do you guys realy beleive my piece belongs to this family, or is it just because of the sickle shape relation?
Fernando
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Old 12th July 2008, 04:04 AM   #19
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Fernando

Your example has a pretty thick cross section so to me it is more a weapon than farm tool. I had one of these years ago but the blade was whimpy compared to yours.

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Old 12th July 2008, 04:37 AM   #20
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Hi Fernando,

I'm happy calling it a "sickle" (arit), but I'm not sure that being heavier means it's primarily a weapon. There are major variations in the weights of farm tools, with heavier ones being used for heavier work (for instance grass cutting vs. vine cutting vs. brush cutting vs. wood cutting). An example of this is seen in The Wikipedia article on billhooks, not that I think you have a billhook exactly.

Just to give you a comparison, all of my kukris weigh more than your arit, and they're all designed for wood cutting.

F
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Old 12th July 2008, 06:10 PM   #21
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Thank you Lew. That's the sort of reasoning i have been inclined to subscribe, untill reasonable evidence shows otherwise.

Thank you Fearn. I see your point/s.
But let me divagate a little.
We know that the sickle (BTW in portuguese "foice" from latin falx), although primarily an agricultural implement, has allways been associated to weaponry. During middle ages it was one of the main resources of the infantry "pawns" that were gathered among agricultural people, who used to adapt long hafts to these implements, to achieve an economic weapon. I can realize that evolution of such situation took people to strenghten the sickles that were meant for combat, making them become exclusive weapons, instead of dual use devices.
... lately i read somewhere that arits also suffered such modifications.
At same time it appears that sickles were in the origin of European halberds.
I find that, at least in the Portuguese universe, hooks and billhooks belong to the sickle family, with variations more dedicated to tough cutting and pruning ( podão and podoa, from podar=to prune).
What stops me to conclude that my specimen is simply an agricultural tool, is that i didn't yet find another example to prove (me) so, with the agravation that i don't have enough "luggage" to associate all that i have seen (or been shown) so far, with my piece.
The blades i see out there, all have a different blade aproach, often with a more acute (closed) angle, together with other details ... socketing system, etc.
I see it that, being this an agricultural tool, or whatever, must be very specific of a determined region, as it doesn't fit into any generical situation ... at least to my unexperienced eyes.
I hope some of what i just said makes any sense.
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Old 12th July 2008, 06:34 PM   #22
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Fernando, is the back edge of this article partially sharpened ?
Does a sickle need a back edge ?

Can it cut both ways ?
If it can; my money's on it being a weapon in the arit clurit class ..
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Old 12th July 2008, 06:57 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick
Fernando, is the back edge of this article partially sharpened ?
Does a sickle need a back edge ?
Can it cut both ways ?
If it can; my money's on it being a weapon in the arit clurit class ..


Thank you for coming in, Rick
1 - No, on the contrary, its back is rather thick and squary all the way to its tip ... with the due tapering.
2 - I think i see what you mean .
3 - You mean back and forth, with the same edge ? i don't see why not ... actually i think it could even do some thrust, BTW; its angle is rather slight.
4 - That being your bet, I will add some of my money to it. Wish us luck
Fernando
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Old 7th September 2010, 07:46 AM   #24
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just saw this in a friend's collection: (2nd one down)



i immediately thought of fernando's piece.

owner refers to it as an arit...
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Old 7th September 2010, 04:55 PM   #25
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Outstanding Wayne!
... after over two years !
How could you remember this ?
An arit, no doubt; this time also the socket speaks for itself.
Thank you very much indeed
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Old 7th September 2010, 05:36 PM   #26
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Neat blades!

Best,

F

(edited to remove duplicate comment)

Last edited by fearn : 7th September 2010 at 08:50 PM.
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Old 7th September 2010, 06:04 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fernando
Outstanding Wayne!
... after over two years !
How could you remember this ?
An arit, no doubt; this time also the socket speaks for itself.
Thank you very much indeed


serendipity i just recently noticed your post in the trading post, which reminded me, and the owner of the one i posted today, posted the photo in another forum's 'show us your swords' thread this morning, so it was still fairly fresh in my mind like most people , it's easier for me to remember the unusual items with unanswered questions...
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Old 6th November 2010, 02:20 PM   #28
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Default sickle, billhook or other

There is much overlap between sickles (grass cutting) and billhooks (wood cutting) - in between there us a wide range of sickle shapes billhooks, e.g. the French faucillon or faucille à bois. The use of the same names for both weapons and tools further confuses the issue, e.g, bill or fauchard, as does the fact that weapons tend to have greater market value than tools.

In many societies the same blade probably served as tool and weapon, as in recent times in Rwanda, where the machete was the weapon of choice (used for genocide...).

Cutting tools may have long or short handles, fitted by a tang, a socket or rivetted scales - the blade may be convex, straight or concave - it may also be decorated, c.f. many tools from Austria, Hungary and the Alpine regions of German, France and Italy.... Handles may be made from wood, bone, leather, horn, antler or even exotic materials such as ivory, rhino horn or walrus tusk.

Even the presence of a hand guard does not indicate a weapon - they are found on Polish and Swiss billhooks, the American Woodsman's Pal (designed by a Swiss emigré) and sometimes the even as the extended guard of an Italian billhook.

A long handle and a hook on the back of the blade does not mean it is a weapon - hedging slashers from many countries have this feature, e.g. the French croissant and the Portugese foice...

Taking any tool/weapon away from its context make it difficult to be sure what its intended use was. Mis-use of a tool make it difficult for collectors of ethnograhic items... many of the tools in the Dutch Rijksmuseuem at Leiden are mis-named, presumably beacuse at the time of collection they were being used for an different purpose than they were made for, or maybe just ignorance or lack of local knowledge on the part of the collector....

If a tool is used as a weapon does that make it into a weapon, or does it remain a tool and vice versa??? (Somewhere I have an image of a German WWll bayonet turned into a sickle by an Italian blacksmith - a real case of turning spears into sickles (pruning hooks) ref Isaiah 2:4)
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Old 7th November 2010, 10:53 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by katana
Hi Fernando,
However, yours is a socketted fitting sugesting that this indeed at some time the blade was mounted on a pole or longer handle. Regards David.


Not all socketed tools had long handles, e.g. English billhooks with sockets from Kent, Hertfordshire and Rutland

Not all socketed tools had any handle fitted at all - the socket was the handle, e.g. French and Italian billhooks from the Alpine regions (Piemonte)...
also those from China and Medieval England: http://outils-anciens.xooit.fr/t197...rme-curieux.htm

Tools similar to this can be found in the collection of the Dutch Ethnographic Museum (Rijksmuseum) at Leiden: http://www.rijksmuseum.nl/collectie/
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Old 7th November 2010, 10:59 AM   #30
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Sorry, wrong museum, should be the Volkenkunde at Leiden, not the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam - correct link is:

http://www.rmv.nl/collections/home.aspx
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