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Old 17th April 2008, 11:14 AM   #1
Royston
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Default Indonesian, Naga or Extraterrestrial ?

A couple more oddities that have been lodging for years. Please can anyone enlighten me as to where they are from and suggest names.
They are quite small, approx. 19 and 16 inches long. One scabbard is laquered wood with some brass, the other is the remains of some very fine basketwork.
The hilts are the most uncomfortable ones I have ever tried to hold. They seem designed to inflict pain to the user !!
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Old 17th April 2008, 01:56 PM   #2
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Kuki-Lushai
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Old 17th April 2008, 04:27 PM   #3
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THE INFORMATION I HAVE ON THEM IS THEY ARE FROM ASSAM NORTH EAST INDIA, NAGA AND WERE MOSTLY CEREMONIAL IN NATURE.SEE RAWSON'S BOOK FIG. 46. I THINK ORIENTAL ARMS HAS HAD ONE IN THE PAST, OF COURSE THEY HAVE PROBABLY HAD AT LEAST ONE OF EVERYTHING IN THE PAST
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Old 17th April 2008, 04:42 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dennee
Kuki-Lushai



Please, is this the tribe(s) that this weapon originated or the actual name of the sword ?

Hi Royston,
a nice and interesting weapon...I really like it ..never seen one before. I imagine the hilt was made for a 'different' hand ....I am unable to comfortably hold a number of my Indian Tulwars.... my hand is too big

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Old 17th April 2008, 05:09 PM   #5
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It's generally referred to as a dao, as all of the short-sword choppers from the region are. I don't have the Kuki terminology for it, but might be able to look it up when I go home.

The Kuki-Lushai-Chin-Shendu groups are related ethonolinguistically to the Nagas and live in the hills of Assam and adjacent regions, but the Kuki and Naga nationalist movements have clashed in recent years.
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Old 17th April 2008, 06:11 PM   #6
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I am very interested in items like these from the hill tribes between the more affluent and unified? parts of India and Burma/Myanmar. I got this one from a prominent net trader. I was very interested to see the handle in one of the examples shown still has some cotton wading. I was worried that on mine the hair is glued in but on close inspection it is with some sort of gum tree/plant resin similar to other items I have. The handles are very small, I think too small for a ladies weapon, even a lady would need to have thier index finger over the guard/knuckleduster. However they would make a very good close range weapon. The basket scabbard is interesting, quite similar to mine. I do question whether these are real fighting weapon as they are difficult to extract from the basket work scabbard without catching, making the action rather a fumble. Can you tell me if the very nice wood scabbard makes a difference? The snagging of the weapon on the scabbard and the small handle, like so many fancy Indian knives, does make wonder if these are more a dress or status weapon?



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Old 17th April 2008, 06:22 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dennee
It's generally referred to as a dao, as all of the short-sword choppers from the region are. I don't have the Kuki terminology for it, but might be able to look it up when I go home.

The Kuki-Lushai-Chin-Shendu groups are related ethonolinguistically to the Nagas and live in the hills of Assam and adjacent regions, but the Kuki and Naga nationalist movements have clashed in recent years.


Thanks for the info...

All these examples shown seem very solidly constructed, possibly too well to be ceremonial....perhaps there is a 'special' way to hold these and a 'technique' to which the grip is suited

Regards David
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Old 18th April 2008, 02:19 AM   #8
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Kuki photo, 1860s? Top of shield visible.
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Old 18th April 2008, 02:36 AM   #9
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Another example
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Old 18th April 2008, 11:14 AM   #10
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Default Grip

Thanks to all who answered my questions. It's good to see that there are a few more of these out there. I would say they are not common though. Apart from the pictures that you have sent I can still only find one reference and that is the simple line drawing in Rawson's book on page 58.

Tim, the Dao is easy enough to draw from the wooden scabbard, but does it matter ? I think most warriors going into battle already have weapons drawn in preparation. A lot of the swords I own are not that easy to remove from scabbards although I suppose that just might be age shrinkage.

Thanks again
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Old 18th April 2008, 06:16 PM   #11
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Some Burma Assam hill tribes in those days were realy very small in stature, smaller than western women, Perhaps that helps explain the grips?

Heres Lt. Vincent Curl {Kachin Rangers.} With a Kachin Villager in WW2,

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{From us army history website. http://www.history.army.mil/ }
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Old 18th April 2008, 06:28 PM   #12
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Good point Jonathan. I has just got my wife to grip the handle and she can get all four fingers inside the knuckleduster guard. It seems quite likely that small possibly poorly nourished {at times} tribes men would find the grip comfortable.
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Old 18th April 2008, 07:31 PM   #13
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Jonathan, well done .
so likely a true weapon, than a ceremonial one. As I said before, these look too well constructed to be a 'representation'.


Regards David
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Old 18th April 2008, 07:56 PM   #14
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Gee...i know nothing about these. First time i've ever seen this weapon. I think they are really nifty though and could certainly see myself collecting one or two if they came my way.
I will say that based on no knowledge of them at all they do look like they would be very effective weapons. Like...ouch!
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