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Old 28th July 2018, 04:18 PM   #1
Athanase
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Default Balinese Keris with an original pamor.

Hello,

I would like more information about this Keris.
The blade shows an interesting pamor, unfortunately she lost her ganja.
The surface of the blade is not as polished as that of the other Balinese keris I own.
The sheath seems to have been modified but adapts perfectly to the blade. (Maybe it was changed after losing ganja or then recovered from another keris)
The clothing of this Keris seems to date from the twentieth century ( early or late? ), but it is well done.
The horn handle (cow) is covered with fine silver plate to highlight the character's clothes and jewelry.
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Old 28th July 2018, 04:54 PM   #2
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I don't believe that this sheath was adapted for this keris because it lost its gonjo. The original opening appears to have been much larger than than. I am also not sure this isn't a complete keris with gonjo iras. If the shape of the gonjo is the same as the current open suggest i thing it is far more likely the blade is iras (all one piece). Valued old sheath are often adapted to other blades like this and this sheath has some unique pelet wood markings that were probably seen as worth saving. I would think this sheath is at least pre WWII.
Interesting hilt as well. I love the expression on this guy's face.
Unusual pamor for Bali. Lombok is another possibility. The blade also looks like it may have been shortened/reshaped at some point. The pamor seems to run off the tip.
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Old 28th July 2018, 05:07 PM   #3
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Ok thank you.
Yes, the blade was most likely reshaped.
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Old 28th July 2018, 05:16 PM   #4
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Pamor Teja Kinurung/ Adeg Tiga and Kul Buntet. Blade and scabbard not originally matching, Javanese blade?
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Old 28th July 2018, 09:07 PM   #5
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I would like to have one like this
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Old 28th July 2018, 10:55 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jean
Pamor Teja Kinurung/ Adeg Tiga and Kul Buntet. Blade and scabbard not originally matching, Javanese blade?
Regards

I could be wrong, but i don't think this looks quite like a Javanese blade. If i had to guess i would say Lombok.
Athanase noted that the blade was not original to this sheath, but it does appear that the refitting was indeed done specifically for this blade so i suspect it had a life in either Bali or Lombok.
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Old 29th July 2018, 07:39 AM   #7
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The handle reminds me of a RARE KUMARA.
See this link:
http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showt...ght=kumara+rare
A pity that the silver selut 'cabochons' are all bumped.
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Old 29th July 2018, 09:35 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David
I could be wrong, but i don't think this looks quite like a Javanese blade. If i had to guess i would say Lombok.
Athanase noted that the blade was not original to this sheath, but it does appear that the refitting was indeed done specifically for this blade so i suspect it had a life in either Bali or Lombok.


I agree that the shape of the blade is quite massive for a Javanese blade but why Lombok?
The back side of the ganja significantly sinks into the scabbard slot while the front side is flush, poor mranggi work. BTW I am not sure that the ganja is missing?
Regards
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Old 29th July 2018, 11:10 PM   #9
A. G. Maisey
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Jean, it is true that the standard of fitting wilah to wrongko requires the sirah cecak and the buntut urang to be level with the top of the gambar mouth, however, this is a Central Javanese kraton standard, it was not and is not a standard that applied widely across all areas that had the keris as a part of their culture.

In pre-puputan Bali it seems that it was acceptable to fit blades in a style that permitted at least a part of the gonjo to project above the gambar. If this keris under discussion did have a gonjo I suggest that fitting would be completely in accordance with the old Balinese standard.

In very old Javanese keris that have fittings made for the blade, that blade will often sit proud of the gambar. Of course, it often sits well below the top of the gambar too, because of shrinkage of the wood. When the wrongko shrinks and allows the blade to sink too low, the benchmark repair is to line the mouth of the wrongko with another piece of wood, as can be seen in this Balinese ensemble. In Jawa this is called "numbeng wayang", or "numbeng topengan".

The inside of a gandar becomes worn with the passing of time, as it wears the wear pattern can cause the blade to sit off-square with the top of the gambar, and just as the inside of the gandar can wear and cause poor fit, so can the mouth of the wrongko.

Amongst the common people in both Bali and Jawa very little, if any, attention is paid to the standards that elites have set for themselves. A person who ranks highly in a kraton hierarchy, or a member of the social elite outside of kraton society may possibly know of the correct standards that apply to the fit of a blade to a wrongko, and may insist on this for a newly fitted blade, however, most people, even amongst the elites, are not really so knowledgeable.

The way it was once explained to me drew an analogy between the wilah (masculine) and the wrongko (feminine):-

in a new marriage between young partners the expectation is that after a settling period they will fit together perfectly, however, as time passes they will often draw apart and the perfection of a new mating will become a matter of mutual accommodation because it is more convenient for both to accommodate rather than separate. If the man in a partnership needs to take a new wife, especially one who has been previously married, he will tolerate her flaws provided they are not too extreme, as almost any partner, even one who does not fit too well, is better than no partner at all, the woman in such an imperfect partnership will tolerate the man because without a man she is nothing and will simply be thrown on the scrap heap.

Once again we can see the relationship between keris and wrongko and man and woman. The two together symbolise society and in turn, all in creation:- one needs the other for harmony to prevail.

So, we can look at this Bali keris and we can see a less than perfect mating of blade to wrongko, but can we legitimately comment that this less than perfect mating is because of poor work by the person who fitted the blade to the wrongko?

My position would be that we do not know the reason why there is less than perfect alignment of the blade with the top of the wrongko, and even if we did know the precise reason, is it at all relevant?

Should we apply seemingly recent standards set by Central Javanese elites to a Balinese keris that does not give the impression of being particularly elitist one?

Last edited by A. G. Maisey : 30th July 2018 at 09:51 AM. Reason: information added
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Old 30th July 2018, 07:26 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jean
I agree that the shape of the blade is quite massive for a Javanese blade but why Lombok?
The back side of the ganja significantly sinks into the scabbard slot while the front side is flush, poor mranggi work. BTW I am not sure that the ganja is missing?
Regards

Jean, i stated that "if i had to guess i would say Lombok". Please note "had to". Hopefully i don't.
I am still thinking along the lines of Bali/Lombak. I lead towards Lombok because i have seen more gonjo iras blades that have been identified as Lombok than Bali and if you noted my comment in my very first response here i stated that i suspect this blade good be gonjo iras. I also think this particular dwi warna pamor is a bit unusual for Bali keris, but was under the impression that Lombak keris were more likely to have unusual pamors. I could, of course, be wrong on this.
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Old 30th July 2018, 08:26 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David
Jean, i stated that "if i had to guess i would say Lombok". Please note "had to". Hopefully i don't.
I am still thinking along the lines of Bali/Lombak. I lead towards Lombok because i have seen more gonjo iras blades that have been identified as Lombok than Bali and if you noted my comment in my very first response here i stated that i suspect this blade good be gonjo iras. I also think this particular dwi warna pamor is a bit unusual for Bali keris, but was under the impression that Lombak keris were more likely to have unusual pamors. I could, of course, be wrong on this.


Hello David,
You are right that this type of pamor seems more common in Lombok than in Bali.
I looked into the reference book from Djelenga and found 3 blades with Kul Buntet motif including 2 with Adeg pamor on page 145 but with a narrow luk shape and identified as "Keris Santana gaya Jaya"?
However I did not find any blade with a similar shape to the one shown by Athanase, but according to the EK this type of dapur is called Gumbeng in Java (not mentioned in the book Dhapur). Also the greneng is not typical of Bali/ Lombok?
Athanase, what is the length of the blade excluding the pesi? If it less than 35 cm it would not point towards Lombok.
Regards

Last edited by Jean : 30th July 2018 at 01:52 PM.
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Old 30th July 2018, 11:09 PM   #12
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Thank you all for your information.

The blade is "short", 33cm. But the pamor seems to have shown that it was longer at the beginning and that it was shortened afterwards.


I can't differentiate the blades from Bali and Lombok?
Generally, what are the details to look for to make a difference?
The handle and the scabbard are from Bali? or also from Lombok?
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Old 30th July 2018, 11:45 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Athanase
Thank you all for your information.

The blade is "short", 33cm. But the pamor seems to have shown that it was longer at the beginning and that it was shortened afterwards.


I can't differentiate the blades from Bali and Lombok?
Generally, what are the details to look for to make a difference?
The handle and the scabbard are from Bali? or also from Lombok?

From about 1750 under the Dutch took control in 1895 Lombok was under Balinese rule. At times different parts of Lombok were ruled by various feuding Balinese kingdoms. During this time it is difficult to tell for sure the difference between many Bali and Lombok keris. It is also possible that some keris made in Lombok may well have been made by Balinese smiths who were sent there. But my understanding is that keris actual made in Lombok could, at times, be a bit more flamboyant than the usual Bali blade.
I believe i recall that certain style of "Bali" sheath was more common to Lombok, but perhaps someone can confirm that. As for your kidney shaped gayaman sarong i think these were to be found in both areas during this almost century and a half period so its hard to say where yours was made. The same can probably be said for the hilt.
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Old 31st July 2018, 08:46 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David
I believe i recall that certain style of "Bali" sheath was more common to Lombok, but perhaps someone can confirm that.


Yes, the kojongan or kekonjongan style of scabbard seems to have been more common in Lombok than in Bali (see pic, I bought this typical old piece in Lombok).
Athanase, from your pics your blade does not look to have been significantly shortened as the Teja Kinurung pamor pattern extends up to the tip. Regarding your question about the differentiation between the blades from Bali and Lombok, it is much too complex to be replied in a simple way but the krisses from Lombok got other influences (Java, Bugis) so many of them are not in pure balinese style as shown in the book "Keris di Lombok".
Regards
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