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Old 21st November 2012, 08:22 PM   #1
Sajen
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Default African Visayan sword!

My second buy of the day: http://www.ebay.com/itm/17094642213...984.m1439.l2649

Ok, the nose is broken away and the eye inlays are missing and the scabbard isn't a beauty in my eyes. The eyes will be easy to restore and the scabbard is maybe original like this. But what is it? Tenegre? Binangon? Sanduko?

I am really curious on your thoughts.
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Old 21st November 2012, 09:04 PM   #2
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It is a tenegre by the looks of the hilt. It is Visayan, perhaps from Panay.

My question for the Visayan experts: is this an early form of hilt?
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Old 21st November 2012, 10:26 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Battara
It is a tenegre by the looks of the hilt. It is Visayan, perhaps from Panay.

My question for the Visayan experts: is this an early form of hilt?


Would agree with you that it is a tenegre but the last thread from Ron let becone me doubtful. Hope that Bangkaya will give his thoughts about this sword.

Regards,

Detlef
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Old 21st November 2012, 11:09 PM   #4
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Sajen,
Interesting piece you have there. It looks all original to me including the scabbard. At first glance, most would think it looks like a typical scabbard from Luzon, but in fact it is purely Ilonggo with the goat skin tapered toe. Plus, the metal banding is typical Ilonggo style, something not done among the Tagalogs. It could possibly be from Antique, but rarely are scabbards are this form there.

As to what to call your sword you are correct in all aspects except it isn't a sanduko (I'll get to that later.) First of all, this sword is from Iloilo, Panay. It has an unusual carved figural anito head. Not the more common traditional "bakunawa" form or the true bakunawa form, but still a figural anito head pommel. To answer Battara's question, no this is not an older form. Generally, Ilonggo swords have greater lattitude in their carvings of figural pommels than the other regions of Panay. Some may carve their pommels in a more traditional manner or more abstract interpretation of "bakunawa." And then you have other figural depictions such as a true bakunawa or even other demons and deities of Filipino mythology, which is why I use the term anito. But even with the various types of figural pommel carving, the proportions of an Ilonggo sword hilt remains relatively constant in relation to the sword as a whole. A proportion which is slightly different to the other regions of Panay (with the exception to Antique.) In Aklan and Capiz, the pommel heads are smaller, but they have larger and longer noses.

Also, look at the ferrule. Ilonggo swords will always have a ferrule of some type of metal or at least a binding at the hilt where it meets the blade. Also, the lack of a handguard of some type is an Ilonggo trait. Though they are commonly seen with various types of handguards whether just plain round discs, s-guards, d-guards, etc., they are commonly found with no guards at all. The same can be said of swords from Antique. Sandukos from Capiz will always have a guard as will the talibungs from Aklan. Aklanon swords will not have a ferrule at all unless it is a fully or semi-full sapot variety or if the the hilt is carved of carabao and lacks a guard (which is really rare and usually found in the coastal regions.)

Finally, look at the blade itself. In general, the swords in Aklan and Capiz will have narrower bevels. Swords from Iloilo and Antique will have much wider bevels. As for blade shape and proportions, this is where it really gets confusing. The variety of different types and shapes of sword blades are more varied in Iloilo and the reason for this is the more varied blade fighting styles found in that region. There are general names for these different blade types; some names still exist where others have been lost in time. In general, most swords in Iloilo will fall under the blanket term of binangon. Although most people here would consider the "binangon" as the sword shape with the sheepsfoot type blade, the correct term for that would be ginunting. Binangon is also used for the term of their work bolo which commonly has that sheepsfoot blade type. A blade with a clipped point is usually called a talibong or if the blade is slender, pinuti. In Aklan and Antique, the general name for a sword is talibong/talibung. In Capiz it is Sanduko. In Aklan there are 4 general blade forms: linamay, bakatong, kinampit, and ginunting. But these are all considered talibung and the blades are usually longer than in the other provinces. In Capiz, the sanduko is a specific sword. It is almost identical to an Aklanon talibung with a bakatong blade, but the blade is shorter and much broader. There's also minute stylistic differences that only a trained eye will spot.

So what do we call your sword? Tenegre? Since you're not and Ilonggo or even from Panay (I assume) that would be a correct term and it does have a figural pommel. Binangon? Well it is a sword from Iloilo so that is correct, too. Talibong? It does have a clipped point so that is correct as well. Pinuti? The blade is slender enough so you can call it that, too. Sanduko? NO...this sword is not from Capiz and doesn't have any traits of a sanduko.

I hope this helps if not confuses.

Regards,
Bangkaya
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Old 22nd November 2012, 01:08 AM   #5
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A VERY INTERESTING PHILIPPINE SWORD. IT MAY HAVE HAD BEAD EYES SECURED BY A NAIL JUDGING FROM THE DEPTH AND SHAPE OF THE EYE SOCKETS. LIKELY REPRESENTS A MONKEY OR MAN HARD TO TELL ESPECIALLY WITH THE NOSE MISSING. THE LEATHER WORK LOOKS LIKE THAT DONE DURING THE TIME THE SPANISH WERE THERE BUT THE SKILL WAS STILL PRESENT WHEN THE AMERICANS ARRIVED. BLADE SHAPE COULD ALSO BE FROM SPANISH INFLUENCE. A VERY NICE ONE.
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Old 22nd November 2012, 02:43 AM   #6
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Actually I was thinking it would traditionally have ivory or bone eye inserts.
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Old 22nd November 2012, 03:48 AM   #7
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Hello Detlef, and congratulations on your new acquisition. I have seen this style of blade before on older as well as later pieces dating up to WWII. Your example though I believe would date to the early twentieth century. I base this mostly on the styling and detailed tooling on the leather scabbard which you do not normally see on the later pieces. I agree with Jose that the eyes were more than likely made of bone held in place by small nails, one of which can still be seen in the eye socket in the close-up of the face carving. The face itself to me does have the appearance of that of a monkey and the missing nose was probably short with flared nostrils. This is just MHO though and I will be most interested in hearing more from the experts on this very interesting item. Again, my congratulations on a great score.

Regards,
Robert

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I cannot believe I missed this one.
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Old 22nd November 2012, 08:00 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bangkaya
Sajen,
Interesting piece you have there. It looks all original to me including the scabbard. At first glance, most would think it looks like a typical scabbard from Luzon, but in fact it is purely Ilonggo with the goat skin tapered toe. Plus, the metal banding is typical Ilonggo style, something not done among the Tagalogs. It could possibly be from Antique, but rarely are scabbards are this form there.

As to what to call your sword you are correct in all aspects except it isn't a sanduko (I'll get to that later.) First of all, this sword is from Iloilo, Panay. It has an unusual carved figural anito head. Not the more common traditional "bakunawa" form or the true bakunawa form, but still a figural anito head pommel. To answer Battara's question, no this is not an older form. Generally, Ilonggo swords have greater lattitude in their carvings of figural pommels than the other regions of Panay. Some may carve their pommels in a more traditional manner or more abstract interpretation of "bakunawa." And then you have other figural depictions such as a true bakunawa or even other demons and deities of Filipino mythology, which is why I use the term anito. But even with the various types of figural pommel carving, the proportions of an Ilonggo sword hilt remains relatively constant in relation to the sword as a whole. A proportion which is slightly different to the other regions of Panay (with the exception to Antique.) In Aklan and Capiz, the pommel heads are smaller, but they have larger and longer noses.

Also, look at the ferrule. Ilonggo swords will always have a ferrule of some type of metal or at least a binding at the hilt where it meets the blade. Also, the lack of a handguard of some type is an Ilonggo trait. Though they are commonly seen with various types of handguards whether just plain round discs, s-guards, d-guards, etc., they are commonly found with no guards at all. The same can be said of swords from Antique. Sandukos from Capiz will always have a guard as will the talibungs from Aklan. Aklanon swords will not have a ferrule at all unless it is a fully or semi-full sapot variety or if the the hilt is carved of carabao and lacks a guard (which is really rare and usually found in the coastal regions.)

Finally, look at the blade itself. In general, the swords in Aklan and Capiz will have narrower bevels. Swords from Iloilo and Antique will have much wider bevels. As for blade shape and proportions, this is where it really gets confusing. The variety of different types and shapes of sword blades are more varied in Iloilo and the reason for this is the more varied blade fighting styles found in that region. There are general names for these different blade types; some names still exist where others have been lost in time. In general, most swords in Iloilo will fall under the blanket term of binangon. Although most people here would consider the "binangon" as the sword shape with the sheepsfoot type blade, the correct term for that would be ginunting. Binangon is also used for the term of their work bolo which commonly has that sheepsfoot blade type. A blade with a clipped point is usually called a talibong or if the blade is slender, pinuti. In Aklan and Antique, the general name for a sword is talibong/talibung. In Capiz it is Sanduko. In Aklan there are 4 general blade forms: linamay, bakatong, kinampit, and ginunting. But these are all considered talibung and the blades are usually longer than in the other provinces. In Capiz, the sanduko is a specific sword. It is almost identical to an Aklanon talibung with a bakatong blade, but the blade is shorter and much broader. There's also minute stylistic differences that only a trained eye will spot.

So what do we call your sword? Tenegre? Since you're not and Ilonggo or even from Panay (I assume) that would be a correct term and it does have a figural pommel. Binangon? Well it is a sword from Iloilo so that is correct, too. Talibong? It does have a clipped point so that is correct as well. Pinuti? The blade is slender enough so you can call it that, too. and Sanduko? NO...this sword is not from Capiz and doesn't have any traits of a sanduko.

I hope this helps if not confuses.

Regards,
Bangkaya


Hello Bangkaya,

thank you very much for your detailed remarks. You have a real great knowledge and (I am sure not only I am) I am glad that you have found your way to this forum. And yes, it helps very much and only confused by my first reading.
Interestingly are you thinking that the goat skin tapered toe is original to the scabbard while I was positive about that it was later local repair or add on.

Any thoughts about the age from it?

BTW, you're correct, I am not from the Philippines, I am german.

Best regards,

Detlef

Last edited by Sajen : 22nd November 2012 at 08:12 PM.
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Old 22nd November 2012, 08:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VANDOO
A VERY INTERESTING PHILIPPINE SWORD. IT MAY HAVE HAD BEAD EYES SECURED BY A NAIL JUDGING FROM THE DEPTH AND SHAPE OF THE EYE SOCKETS. LIKELY REPRESENTS A MONKEY OR MAN HARD TO TELL ESPECIALLY WITH THE NOSE MISSING. THE LEATHER WORK LOOKS LIKE THAT DONE DURING THE TIME THE SPANISH WERE THERE BUT THE SKILL WAS STILL PRESENT WHEN THE AMERICANS ARRIVED. BLADE SHAPE COULD ALSO BE FROM SPANISH INFLUENCE. A VERY NICE ONE.


Hello Barry,

thank you very much. I direct have had a good feel when I see the pictures and was sure that I don't make a mistake by this price. I special was attracted by the good patina from the handle. But I am with Jose and Robert that the eye inlays have been from ivory or bone or maybe from metal (silver or brass).

Regards,

Detlef
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Old 22nd November 2012, 08:18 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Coleman
Hello Detlef, and congratulations on your new acquisition. I have seen this style of blade before on older as well as later pieces dating up to WWII. Your example though I believe would date to the early twentieth century. I base this mostly on the styling and detailed tooling on the leather scabbard which you do not normally see on the later pieces. I agree with Jose that the eyes were more than likely made of bone held in place by small nails, one of which can still be seen in the eye socket in the close-up of the face carving. The face itself to me does have the appearance of that of a monkey and the missing nose was probably short with flared nostrils. This is just MHO though and I will be most interested in hearing more from the experts on this very interesting item. Again, my congratulations on a great score.

Regards,
Robert
P.S.
I cannot believe I missed this one.



Thank you as well Robert! Hope you are correct by your dating. I think I have had good luck since it was listed not long before and the price let me not long think about.

Regards,

Detlef
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Old 22nd November 2012, 08:38 PM   #11
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Congratulations !! Im happy to see you were the winner, I saw auction and I made an offer, sometime ago I had bought it directly, but with the actual economic situation ...
I hope you enjoy sword !!

best regards
carlos
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Old 22nd November 2012, 09:01 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carlos
Congratulations !! Im happy to see you were the winner, I saw auction and I made an offer, sometime ago I had bought it directly, but with the actual economic situation ...
I hope you enjoy sword !!

best regards
carlos


Hello Carlos,

thank you and sorry!! Have thought already that the offer was given from a forum member. It wasn't my plan to buy a second item at the same evening (see my other new thread) but this sword attracted my eyes and the seller offered free shipping and I see an offer already....

Regards,

Detlef
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Old 22nd November 2012, 10:30 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sajen
Hello Carlos,

thank you and sorry!! Have thought already that the offer was given from a forum member. It wasn't my plan to buy a second item at the same evening (see my other new thread) but this sword attracted my eyes and the seller offered free shipping and I see an offer already....

Regards,

Detlef



Don,t worry !! and enjoy sword !!!
regards
carlos
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Old 9th January 2013, 05:12 PM   #14
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I have received the tenegre and I am extreme pleased with it. The handle have an outstanding patination and the old chips can't disturb the beauty. Have cleaned the blade with steel wool and WD40. There are some marking near the handle at the spine of the blade, what's unusual they going until the back of the blade. And there is a forging repair in the middle of the blade.
The leather throat I refresh with brown boot polish and the brass I have cleaned a little bit. What I never have seen before is the black covering of the scabbard, some sort of linen cloth.
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Old 9th January 2013, 05:19 PM   #15
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One detail picture more and a group picture with two of his new friends.
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Old 9th January 2013, 06:11 PM   #16
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Great looking sword Detlef and it looks very happy with its new family.

Regards,
Robert
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Old 9th January 2013, 11:24 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Coleman
Great looking sword Detlef and it looks very happy with its new family.

Regards,
Robert


Thank you Robert and feel free to send your talibongs over to me that they feel happy with them together!!
Seriously, any thoughts about the strange markings at the spine?

Regards,

Detlef
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Old 10th January 2013, 05:39 AM   #18
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WITH THE BETTER PICTURES IT CLEARLY HAS A MUSTACHE AND BEARD SO LIKELY REPRESENTS A SPANISH MAN, NOT A MONKEY. VERY NICE CARVING AS WELL AS LEATHER WORK.
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Old 10th January 2013, 09:08 AM   #19
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Hello Barry,

I am not quite sure that it shall present a spanish man, have you noticed the fangs?

Regards,

Detlef
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