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Old 17th February 2020, 01:46 PM   #1
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 3
Default Any ideas about this little Sumatra keris?

Hello everyone,

I recently acquired this little keris. The Gandar (sheath) is from Sumatra I assume but the blade is very unusual.

Is the blade an old utility blade or working knife?

Total length is: 23cm
Length of the keris: 21,5cm
Length of the blade: 17cm.

Would appreciate any help and assistance!
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Old 17th February 2020, 04:34 PM   #2
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Location: The Great Midwest
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My ideas about this little Sumatra keris is that it is not a keris at all.
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Old 18th February 2020, 07:15 PM   #3
Join Date: Apr 2005
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Hello Maurits,

I'm not sure that this piece really is from Sumatra. I may well be but it seems a bit too young to exhibit clearcut features that might allow positive identification to any traditional local culture.

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Old 18th February 2020, 08:30 PM   #4
A. G. Maisey
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 5,475

I would most gently suggest that this weapon was very probably regarded as a keris by the person who initially produced it.

To my eye it bears every indication of a weapon of keris-like form that was manufactured for use by a person of lower social status in a place that was not subject to the standards of a refined community.

As collectors we sometimes tend to forget that in the area of SE Asia where the keris is found, not all communities have the same, or even similar, standards. Small, isolated fishing or subsistence farming communities bear absolutely no relevance to communities that are under the influence of a kraton.

Personally, I regard this weapon as a valuable addition to a collection that is formed around the concepts of study & understanding, rather than around the concept of art.
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