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Old 1st May 2020, 01:55 PM   #1
Kubur
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Default Centipede Aceh

Hi

Is anyone knows about the magical power of centipedes in Aceh and why this animal and which kind of power it gives?

Thanks!!

Kubur
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Old 1st May 2020, 10:00 PM   #2
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Hello Kubur,

I haven't seen centipedes depicted in Aceh, I believe. What are you looking at?

Anyway, centipedes are really fierce fighters.

Regards,
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Old 2nd May 2020, 07:18 AM   #3
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Hi Kai,

I was refering to some keris blades but also some peurise shields.

It will be difficult to develop as the thread is now not connected to weapons...

Very best
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Old 2nd May 2020, 10:19 AM   #4
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I think that centipede as also eaten during some magical procession in indonesia. I saw a video with a guy cutting himself the tong, then put a brunch a living centiped in the mouth, chew everything then show us a uncut tong.
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Old 2nd May 2020, 05:24 PM   #5
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So your question is in relations to weaponry, like when it is seen on weaponry?
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Old 3rd May 2020, 05:50 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Battara
So your question is in relations to weaponry, like when it is seen on weaponry?


Yes please Sir as i would like to post some examples: shields and keris...

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Old 3rd May 2020, 09:57 AM   #7
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Thanks Jean Baptiste

I agree centipedes have magical powers, they give strenght and protection.

Here some examples of shield and keris (from this forum) with centipedes on it.

IMO the wavy blade of the keris are representation of centipedes.


And the steel pattern on the blades represent the legs and the head of the centipede is a the forte of the blade.

I need keris specialists expertise...

Keris are stingy weapons, it would be the meaning.

I will be grateful if the admin can move back this thread to weapons...
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Old 3rd May 2020, 11:26 AM   #8
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Thanks for the examples, Kubur!

I'm afraid that the current selection is not really convincing to me: The keris are very recent pieces (or recently modified from old blades); these are clearly not traditional and, thus, only representative of the current era approach of a limited sector of society on Java to regard keris as art for art's sake only (i.e. not restricted by any traditional constraints).

These brass "Aceh" bucklers were produced in huge numbers for the late-colonial collector's market (for colonial Dutch and other visitors); the addition of a snake and a centipede is certainly unusual and not representative of any older pieces I remember - I'm pretty sure that this piece isn't from a workshop run by Acehnese craftsmen.

There is no doubt that centipedes have been widely regarded as special (strong and dangerous) animals like elephants, crocodiles, snakes, tigers, etc. As poisonous animals, they will also have found a place in rituals as well as parlor tricks.

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Old 3rd May 2020, 01:25 PM   #9
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I've seen videos of Filipino smiths basting red-hot blades just before quenching with crushed spiders and centipedes t 'poison' the blade for extra lethality. Don't think any actual poison is left after tho. Maybe just a bit of the spirit of the angry animal enters the blade tho.
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Old 3rd May 2020, 02:49 PM   #10
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I agree for the two keris.

And do you explain the pamor Kelabang Sayuta or Kelabang Sewu?
The centipede pamor

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Old 3rd May 2020, 04:00 PM   #11
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I'll see if this can be sent back over to the Ethnographic side.
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Old 3rd May 2020, 10:52 PM   #12
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Thank you Fernando!
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Old 4th May 2020, 01:54 AM   #13
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The "five deadly venoms" isn't just a classic kung-fu film. The centipede, snake, lizard, scorpion and toad are the classic deadly animals of Chinese folklore. Indonesian mythology holds similar ideas about venomous animals, including a widespread belief in poisonous lizards (not so ridiculous considering the Komodo dragon, a toxic Indonesian lizard with lots of untested relatives.).

The keris is clearly a snake (or more properly, a regal naga), and its use would be like a striking snake, rather than a slicing or chopping technique. It is very interesting though, to see someone has switched in another of the deadly animals, even if it is a recent depiction.

I am posting a related obat (medicine) bottle from Sumatra, perhaps Aceh. It has five deadly animals that are a little different than the Chinese versions. This obat bottle has a Snake, lizard, spider (replacing toad), and a combination centipede/scorpion. Both aspects are clear, from the pincers of the scorpion, to the sinuous body of the centipede with the characteristic forked tip. The snake is represented by carved bands of scales, with the bands in the form of straps. The venoms can be represented in part, and combined, to multiply the effect. The combined power of the venoms gives the medicine its power, or from another point of view, represents the power of the medicine within. At the top of the bottle is a stopper in the form of a crouched figure similar to a keris hilt. This is an obvious reference to a sick figure being cured by the medicine in the bottle, but it is also a figure containing the magic of the deadly venoms. In my opinion, the handle of the keris is similarly controlling a venomous snake, which, can then be seen as ritualistically equivalent to a centipede.

I wouldn't be surprised to someday see a lizard keris.
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Old 4th May 2020, 06:37 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Battara
Thank you Fernando!


I agree with Battara and I join him to thanks Fernando.
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Old 4th May 2020, 06:39 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by josh stout
The keris is clearly a snake (or more properly, a regal naga),


Sorry I have only one book on Indonesian weapons and I have no infos about that. Is it written somewhere or just a personal opinion?


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Old 4th May 2020, 02:16 PM   #16
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I don't think I ever questioned that it was a snake. I am sure other forumites can give a more scholarly reply, but there are many keris with a naga head where the kembang kecang usually is, with a wavy tail heading up to the tip.

In martial arts (silat), snake style is for knife fighting.

It is interesting to note that it is the tail of the snake, that is the tip of the keris. Indonesian folklore has snakes that can sting with their tails.

Anyway, I enjoyed the idea that a centipede can magically replace the snake.

I'll look for some keris naga pictures. Modern examples are plentiful on Google, but it would be nice to find an earlier example. I will look on the forum.
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Old 4th May 2020, 02:23 PM   #17
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Here is an example that didn't take too long to find. I am sure there are many more.

http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showt...ight=naga+keris
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Old 4th May 2020, 03:02 PM   #18
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This is my keris, with a more stylized naga. With comparison to more detailed versions, it is clear it is a naga.
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Old 5th May 2020, 12:42 AM   #19
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Kubur, the two keris you show are fairly recent creations, one perhaps more artistic than the other (this one was actually discussed on our keris forum at one time). However, i am not aware that there is any tradition in keris culture or in accepted keris pakem that allows for the replacement of the naga form with a centipede. There is no way that the over all form of the keris in any way represents the centipede. It has always been acknowledged as a naga form and there is quite a bit of research and shared knowledge on this to back that up.
But as you have mentioned, there are known pamors such as pamor Kelabang Sayuta which do seem to pay some honour to the centipede. It seems to be a variation on the more established pamor Blarak Ngirid. I don't believe this is a pamor you are likely to find on any older keris however. You are likely only to find it on keris kamardikan.
The centipede does seem to have some folklore attached to it in Indonesia, but again, i am unaware of it being used seriously as a motif in traditional keris culture.
http://indonesianfolklore.blogspot....ipede-lake.html
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Old 5th May 2020, 12:51 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubur
I was refering to some keris blades but also some peurise shields.

It will be difficult to develop as the thread is now not connected to weapons...

BTW, while keris certainly exist in the region of Aceh, it is not a keris-centric (if i might coin a term) area of Indonesia. The rentcong is the preferred personal dagger for that region. The two kamardikan (current era) keris you show in this thread are not from Aceh, nor are they to be taken for serious traditional forms.
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Old 5th May 2020, 09:12 AM   #21
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This centipede, among other designs, is on the blade of the sikin panjang discussed, with photographs, in the thread 'Gayo? sikin panjang with talismans in etched raised relief', 21 Apr. 2014. Centipedes are said to move silently and strike painfully.

http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showt...ghlight=loedjoe
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Old 5th May 2020, 09:26 AM   #22
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Thank you all!

This is not my geographic area. But I killed so many that I developed and interest for the centipedes.

I found that on the web

Rencong Meukure (meukuree) differ from the other types in that the blade is decorated with talismanic images of snakes, centipedes, flowers or other designs. The designs interpreted as recognizing certain privileges and conferring certain advantages. This type, carefully preserved and cared for over generations, is deemed to have the greatest magical power.
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Old 13th May 2020, 06:25 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by josh stout
I don't think I ever questioned that it was a snake. I am sure other forumites can give a more scholarly reply, but there are many keris with a naga head where the kembang kecang usually is, with a wavy tail heading up to the tip.

In martial arts (silat), snake style is for knife fighting.

It is interesting to note that it is the tail of the snake, that is the tip of the keris. Indonesian folklore has snakes that can sting with their tails.

Anyway, I enjoyed the idea that a centipede can magically replace the snake.

I'll look for some keris naga pictures. Modern examples are plentiful on Google, but it would be nice to find an earlier example. I will look on the forum.


a little bit more on silat weapons

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weapons_of_silat

actually its real and full name is Pencak Silat Setia Hati :

a martial art from Indonesia, where it developed into a modern sport version whilst the traditional ( "old" or perhaps better original ) version migrated 1946-1952 to the Netherlands when peoples of that archipelago came to the Netherlands and founded the first Pencak Silat Setia Hati schools for Mollucans, Indonesians and later the Dutch.

A reference was made to a snake but Pencak took a lot of inspiration from the complete animal world and hence incorporated plural styles developed from the tiger, monkey, snake (cobrasystem), frog, grasshopper, horse, crocodile, bat and crane to name a few.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pencak_silat


concerning the centipede: check the internet for
Klabang Sajuto Kelabang Sajuto Lipan Sajuta

The image of pamor Klabang Sajuto ( see last picture) looks like a millipede. Pamor Klabang Sajuto is also simular to pamor Naga Rangsang. The difference is that the pamor lines of pamor Klabang Sajuto are broken at the ountermost end.
The magical strength of pamor Klabang Sajuto increases the success and it is especially for those persons that have a leading position in civil or military terrain.
Pamor Klabang Sajuto is a form of pamor Miring and Rekan. It is a selected pamor motif and not suitable for everyone.
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Old 14th May 2020, 03:15 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gp
concerning the centipede: check the internet for
Klabang Sajuto Kelabang Sajuto Lipan Sajuta

The image of pamor Klabang Sajuto ( see last picture) looks like a millipede. Pamor Klabang Sajuto is also simular to pamor Naga Rangsang. The difference is that the pamor lines of pamor Klabang Sajuto are broken at the ountermost end.
The magical strength of pamor Klabang Sajuto increases the success and it is especially for those persons that have a leading position in civil or military terrain.
Pamor Klabang Sajuto is a form of pamor Miring and Rekan. It is a selected pamor motif and not suitable for everyone.

This copy & paste from The Keris Shop should perhaps best be taken with at least a small grain of salt (and should also be in quotes with source cited since it is a direct copy of text on that site). These are not pamor names that have a very long history in the keris world.
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Old 14th May 2020, 03:09 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David
This copy & paste from The Keris Shop should perhaps best be taken with at least a small grain of salt (and should also be in quotes with source cited since it is a direct copy of text on that site). These are not pamor names that have a very long history in the keris world.


OK, thnx for the correction and your advise on the keris shop !
And indeed apologies for omitting the source.

Last edited by gp : 14th May 2020 at 08:05 PM.
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Old 14th May 2020, 07:26 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubur
Hi

Is anyone knows about the magical power of centipedes in Aceh and why this animal and which kind of power it gives?

Thanks!!

Kubur


Tip: check the internet on duizendpoot (= Dutch) or lipan (Malay) for centipede. Also Atjeh, Dutch for Aceh and kris ( Dutch) for keris.

Note : Atjeh or Aceh always has been (and still is) a very strong religious region, hence I believe you will not be able to find much about magical power of centipedes over there as this is considred haram / forbidden from their perspective .
Which makes me believe ( and I might be utterly mistaken) that the origin of the magical powers has is roots not in Atjeh / Aceh but elswhere in Sumatra.
If one leaves out the "magical powers" and refers to the centipede as an example / fighting reference like it is used in pencak silat from Sumatra there might be more to it when discussing Aceh / Atjeh

Last edited by gp : 14th May 2020 at 09:31 PM.
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Old 14th May 2020, 08:31 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gp
Tip: check the internet on duizendpoot (= Dutch) or lipan (Malay) for centipede. Also Atjeh, Dutch for Aceh and kris ( Dutch) for keris.

Note : Atjeh or Aceh always has been (and still is) a very strong religious region, hence I believe you will not be able to find much about magical power of centipedes over there as this is considred haram / forbidden from their perspective .
Which makes me believe ( and I might be utterly mistaken) that the origin of the magical powers has is roots not in Atjeh / Aceh but elswhere in Sumatra.
If one leaves out the "magical powers" and refers to the centipede as an example / fighting reference like it is used in pencak silat from Sumatra there might be more to it when discussing Aceh / Atjeh

GP, i honestly mean no offense by this. I am always happy to find people interested in keris, though it does not seem to be the focus of your collecting, at least based upon you previous posts. So please forgive my debate here, but as someone whose collecting focus is indeed the keris i feel i must speak up here as not to leave people with the wrong impression about these weapons. You can find some interesting things on the internet about keris. Not all of it is to be taken too seriously though.
I am a bit confused about the keris you have chosen to posted here and their relevance to the subject at hand as well ad what you have written. Firstly you are discussing Sumatran origins of the magical powers of the centipede in your last post, yet all the keris you are posting are from Java. The keris on the red background is a reasonably nice antique keris. But the pamor pattern here has nothing to do with centipedes so i do not see it's relevance here. This other "toothy" keris you have posted is also of Javanese origin, but it is something of an abomination i'm afraid. It wouldn't have been so terrible if someone had not taken a power tool to it and attempted to make it into something "unusual", perhaps in the hopes of attracting a buyer with a story about it being some kind of "rarity". But this is not acceptable pakem for any keris that i am aware of. This treatment is completely non-traditional and has no actual meaning within Javanese culture. This was most probably an alteration to previously existing blade. If the intention was to make it into something that represents a centipede it was done with no attention to cultural norms or traditions for the Javanese keris.
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Old 14th May 2020, 08:51 PM   #28
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no offfence taken, but I was refering to Aceh / Atjeh which is Sumatra, being the start of the topic, sorry if that was not clear and also my other mishaps.
Perhaps better to delete my last contribution as it caused dissatisfaction...

Last edited by gp : 14th May 2020 at 11:03 PM.
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Old 14th May 2020, 09:07 PM   #29
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It's not a question of dissatisfaction GP. I am just trying to understand the visual illustrations you have chosen to make your points. These Javanese keris do not have any connection whatsoever to Sumatra or, more specifically Aceh. I don't understand the connection you are attempting to make in posting them and as a collector of keris as well as one of the moderators of the keris forum i am simply trying to see to it that people on this forum, who may or may not have much background in keris, do not get confused about the intent of the keris or it's relationship, which seem rather slight, to the discussion at hand. That is all.

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