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Old 23rd July 2019, 06:28 AM   #1
Amuk Murugul
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Default DOEHOENG KASOENDAN (A Soenda Perspective)

Hullo everybody!

Below is a poesaka (=heirloom) to share:

. Doehoeng Asgar

Name: Kangdjeng Wangsa Dita(=symbolises links to Limbangan and Soemedang)
Desc: Doehoeng Sampana 5 Eloek(= symbolises as belonging to the hereditary boepati-class) LIMBANGAN
Char: 5 Eloek , Kembang-katjang
Blade: LxOALxWxT=34.5x41x7.93x1.06cm. GALOEH PANGAOEBAN (=symbolises link to Galoeh)
Handle: Wood, Pralamba Jaksa Tjakra(=devastating energy)
Wt: 170g.
Sheath: Wood, Widjajan(=symbolises a very old family-tree); white-metal o/sheath w/ frontal pierced designs incl.1813
Comments: Taroem(=indigo) is traditionally identified with Soenda, hence the band.
16/02 1813 - British lieutenant-governor Stamford Raffles directed the regent of Limbangan to survey possible sites for a new capital city for Limbangan. Once the site and name for the new city had been determined, the Garoet Construction Committee was named.
15/09 1813 - first foundation-stone laid for construction of city of Garoet, to replace Soetji as capital of Limbangan regency.
07/05 1913 - Dutch Governor-general dissolves Limbangan regency and replaces it with a newly-created Garoet regency, w/ Garoet as its capital.
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Old 23rd July 2019, 06:31 AM   #2
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Default Three basic pieces just to share:

00. TilamOepih Lempeng (SandangWalikat, Tjorok)

Name: Sang Kamandaka
Desc: Doehoeng Tilam Oepih Lempeng PASIR LOEHOER
Char: Oepih-rai , Elis , Lempeng
Blade: LxOALxWxT=46x53.5x9.16x1.47cm.(paksi: 0.98x7.16x0.80cm.)
Handle: Wood, Ganaisia(lord of the ganadewatas) w/ white-metal wewer & yellow-metal seloet
Wt: 513g.
Sheath: Wood, Korakoran
Comments: SandangWalikat: worn over shoulder-blade; Tjorok: can act as backup sword .


01. TilamSari Lempeng
(SandangWalikat,Tjorok)

Name: Sang Sasaka Domas
Desc: Doehoeng Tilam Sari Lempeng SOENDA SEMBAWA
Char: Oepih , Elis , Lempeng .
Blade: LxOALxWxT=43x51x9.42x1.49cm.(paksi: 1.05x7.52x1.14cm.)
Handle: Wood, Ganaisia w/ yellow-metal seloet
Wt: 443g.
Sheath: Wood, Djongan


02. TilamSari Lempeng (Tjorok)

Name: Sang Banjaran Sari
Desc: Doehoeng TilamSari Lempeng TJAROEBAN
Char: Oepih , Elis , Lempeng .
Blade: LxOALxWxT=38x46x8.22x1.36cm. (paksi: 0.76x7.49x0.45cm.)
Wt: 274g
Handle: Wood, Babandolan(=tough, wild pig) w/ white-metal seloet
Sheath: Wood Saridjong w/ pressed white-metal o/sheath
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Old 23rd July 2019, 11:43 AM   #3
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Hello Amuk,
Thank you very much for showing us these nice and rare pieces, please go on!
I notice that you use the letters "oe" instead of "u" and "tj" instead of "c" as per the old tradition, is "tjorok/ corok" referring to a long blade?
Best regards
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Old 23rd July 2019, 11:48 AM   #4
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Hello Amuk,
The gambar/ atasan of the pusaka kris looks like a rare model from East Java/ Madura, the one of specimen 00 a model from Tegal, and the one of specimen 02 a model from East Java, are they all originating from Sunda?
Regards

Last edited by Jean : 23rd July 2019 at 01:56 PM.
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Old 23rd July 2019, 07:09 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jean
I notice that you use the letters "oe" instead of "u" and "tj" instead of "c" as per the old tradition, is "tjorok/ corok" referring to a long blade?

Yes Jean, Amuk generally seems to use the old Dutch spellings that have fallen out of usage in Indonesia since the early 1970s. I do find it a bit confusing at times myself.
I assume, Amuk, that when you write "Doehoeng" you are intenting one of the alternative words for keris better known as "Dhuwung"?
An interesting collection of old keris in lesser seen dress forms regardless.
Does anyone of a translation of the writing at the top of the pendok on the first (1813) keris?
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Old 25th July 2019, 04:08 AM   #6
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David, I have no knowledge of the Sundanese language, however, I have recently made the acquaintance of a gentleman from Sunda who was a university lecturer, he tells me that "duhung" ie, Amuk's "doehoeng" is in fact not a direct equivalent to the Javanese "duwung" or "dhuwung", but rather can only be used to refer to a keris that is in the possession of an important man, somebody with some sort of government rank, or who is recognised in his community as being of high status.

If that keris were to become the possession of somebody who was not a person of importance, then strictly speaking, it could no longer be referred to as "duhung".

Thus, all these keris that Amuk has shown to us must be keris that belong at this present time to a person of some status.
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Old 25th July 2019, 07:46 AM   #7
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It seems to me that Amuk is only referring the first kris (poesaka) as doehoeng but not the others.
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Old 25th July 2019, 08:02 AM   #8
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It is in the description of all the others too Jean.
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Old 25th July 2019, 08:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
David, I have no knowledge of the Sundanese language, however, I have recently made the acquaintance of a gentleman from Sunda who was a university lecturer, he tells me that "duhung" ie, Amuk's "doehoeng" is in fact not a direct equivalent to the Javanese "duwung" or "dhuwung", but rather can only be used to refer to a keris that is in the possession of an important man, somebody with some sort of government rank, or who is recognised in his community as being of high status.

If that keris were to become the possession of somebody who was not a person of importance, then strictly speaking, it could no longer be referred to as "duhung".

Thus, all these keris that Amuk has shown to us must be keris that belong at this present time to a person of some status.

Thanks for that added information Alan.
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Old 13th August 2019, 11:46 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
David, I have no knowledge of the Sundanese language, however, I have recently made the acquaintance of a gentleman from Sunda who was a university lecturer, he tells me that "duhung" ie, Amuk's "doehoeng" is in fact not a direct equivalent to the Javanese "duwung" or "dhuwung", but rather can only be used to refer to a keris that is in the possession of an important man, somebody with some sort of government rank, or who is recognised in his community as being of high status.

If that keris were to become the possession of somebody who was not a person of importance, then strictly speaking, it could no longer be referred to as "duhung".

Thus, all these keris that Amuk has shown to us must be keris that belong at this present time to a person of some status.


As with Javanese, Sundanese has high and low forms, i.e. kasar (loosely translate to coarse, rough, abrasive, harsh) or halus (loosely translated to proper, polished, refine). To my understanding, "keris" is on the kasar end of the spectrum though wouldn't necessarily register as kasar if you referred to your own keris or referring to the object abstractly as "keris". Though the halus or proper term for another person's keris, especially if they were high born or were had rank or status would indeed be duhung. That's my understanding of it anyway. I think the term is relatively archaic as far as working Sundanese goes.

So in the context of this post and to what Alan's friend from Sunda said, it makes sense that in the Sundanese language that these are referred to as duhung as opposed to just "keris". You would probably not refer to your own keris as a "duhung" though, even if you were of high status.

Last edited by jagabuwana : 14th August 2019 at 01:15 AM.
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Old 13th August 2019, 09:32 PM   #11
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Well Jaga, you might refer to your own keris as "duhung" --- I guess it all depends upon one's opinion of oneself.
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Old 14th August 2019, 01:18 AM   #12
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Haha, might need more stamps in my passport to get away with that one.

I should add that the reason "duhung" is archaic in everyday Sundanese usage is likely because the keris has little to no significance to Sundanese people nowadays (where it once used to, though of course not anywhere close to its importance in Javanese culture), and therefore very few would really care or pick up on it if you referred to someone else's duhung as a "keris".

Interestingly, the only thing referred to as "duhung" at the Prabu Geusan Ulun museum in Sumedang is a badik, and the keris are just called keris.

If I recall correctly, I think Eiseman in Sekala and Niskala mentioned that it the keris , at least where he lived in Bali, was almost never referred to as "keris" but as words that were euphemisms for it, out of respect for the power and place of the object in society and culture, and that these euphemisms were "high" Balinese.

Last edited by jagabuwana : 14th August 2019 at 05:24 AM.
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Old 14th August 2019, 06:30 AM   #13
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It is a characteristic of Javanese & Balinese language patterns to use euphemisms to refer to anything at all that might be a little, let us say, "touchy". There are euphemisms spread right through keris terminology.

In Javanese there are a number of names for the keris, and they refer to the keris in various situations, probably so in Old Javanese as well, but we cannot be certain of this.

Language changes all the time, when we use the concept of "archaic" usage, it can be a matter of something being archaic in common usage, but utterly correct in a specific situation.
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Old 12th September 2019, 04:30 AM   #14
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Default 'Classic' examples .....

Hullo everybody!

Further additions for sharing.

_000_Setjang Lempeng

Desc: Doehoeng Setjang Lempeng.
Char: Both edges similar, Lempeng.
Blade: LxOALxWxT=30.5x37x7.16x0.88cm. GALOEHPANGAOEBAN.
Handle: Wood Pralamba Jaksa Baradjaperdana w/ yellow-metal seloet.
Wt: 172g.
Sheath: Wood Djoengkoeng w/ pakoe-hadji motif.



_001_SampanaHiras 11Eloek

Desc: Doehoeng Sampana Hiras 11Eloek SOENDAPAKOEAN.
Char: Kembang-katjang , Kotjop , 11 Eloek .
Blade: LxOALxWxT=36x42.5x7.06x1.03cm..
Handle: Wood Pralamba Koewera Oepaja.
Wt: 202g.
Sheath: Wood Widjajan w/ yellow-metal o/sheath.



_002_Sampana 9Eloek

Desc: Doehoeng Sampana 9Eloek.
Char: Kembang-katjang , Kotjop , 9 Eloek .
Blade: LxOALxWxT=36x43x9.08x1.21cm. GALOEHPAKOEAN.
Handle: Wood Pralamba Jaksa Apoen w/yellow-metal wewer.
Wt: 256g.
Sheath: Wood Djoengan



_003_SampanaLeres 9Eloek

Desc: Doehoeng Sampana Leres 9Eloek.
Char: Kembang-katjang , Makoeta , Kotjop , 9 Eloek .
Blade: LxOALxWxT=36.5x44x7.07x1.05cm. SOENDAPAKOEAN.
Handle: Wood Koewera w/ copper seloet.
Wt: 176g.
Sheath: Wood Djongtjoetjoer.


_004_ Sampana 9Eloek

Desc: Doehoeng Sampana 9Eloek.
Char: Kembang-katjang , Kotjop , 9 Eloek .
Blade: LxOALxWxT=34.5x44x8.06x1.03cm. GALOEHPAKOEAN.
Handle: Wood PraLamba Jaksa Tjakra w/ seloet studded w/ clear-stones.
Wt: 171g.
Sheath: Wood Lantjaran.
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Old 13th September 2019, 03:47 PM   #15
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Very nice and rare pieces as usual, thank you! I like the sarong of 000 especially
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Old 14th September 2019, 04:31 AM   #16
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Agree with Jean. More nice old and unusual dress examples. Very nice.
Just curious, is there some reason you keep all your hilts facing in the opposite direction from what is generally considered the correct position?
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Old 14th September 2019, 05:07 AM   #17
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Default Since you asked .....

Quote:
Originally Posted by David
Agree with Jean. More nice old and unusual dress examples. Very nice.
Just curious, is there some reason you keep all your hilts facing in the opposite direction from what is generally considered the correct position?

Hullo David,

I try to avoid mentioning it; but since you asked:

The hilt faces the 'rear' as a reminder to djatisoenda to 'watch one's back'. Harks back to 1357 when treachery perpetrated by the 'Mahapatih wong-wetan', resulted in the massacre of the Soenda royal wedding-party.

Best,
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Old 14th September 2019, 07:34 AM   #18
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1357 was the year that a princess of Sunda was taken to Majapahit as a bride for the ruler, Rajasanegara (AKA Hayam Wuruk). The Mahapatih Gajah Mada wanted nothing but complete submission from Sunda and would only accept the Princess Pitaloka as a concubine. The Sundanese ruler --- who was with the wedding party --- was not agreeable to this.

The result was the Battle of Bubat, which was not much of a battle, more of a cruel massacre totally without honour for Majapahit and led to Gajah Mada's fall from grace. The Sundanese were a wedding party of at most a few hundred, the permanent soldiers and palace guards in Majapahit would have numbered into the thousands. The Sundanese fought until all were dead, the women in the party, including Princess Pitaloka took their own lives.

The Sundanese lost the "battle" but won everlasting honour.

Majapahit was disgraced because it acted without honour.

After this affair, Gajah Mada was removed from the capital and relieved of his command.

mahapatih wong wetan = prime minister of the people of the east, Majapahit is to the east of Sunda.

Javanese history is not always history as people from European societies understand history to be, but it sure does make interesting reading, I have often thought that it has a lot in common with the history of the Mafia, especially the Mafia in America.
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Old 14th September 2019, 09:08 AM   #19
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Thank you , Alan.

Best,
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Old 15th October 2019, 11:19 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amuk Murugul
Hullo David,

I try to avoid mentioning it; but since you asked:

The hilt faces the 'rear' as a reminder to djatisoenda to 'watch one's back'. Harks back to 1357 when treachery perpetrated by the 'Mahapatih wong-wetan', resulted in the massacre of the Soenda royal wedding-party.



As an urang Sunda I enjoy this for the sake of this pseudo grudge Though I can't say I'm about to reverse my hilts to honour the sentiment. I too much enjoy the neatness and aesthetic of it being the right way around.

This isn't something I've observed in Sunda either in public viewings or private collections, pusaka and non-pusaka alike. I think that it might be impossible to determine the chain of transmission but I do wonder where and who this convention (if it even is a convention) came from.
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Old 16th October 2019, 05:30 PM   #21
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Here is some further info on the Battle of Bubat.
Of course, nothing is said here about this practice of reversing keris hilts. It is not something i have ever come across in my readings before. Interesting if true, but like Jagabuwana, i believe i will continue to present my own keris with the hilts in their "correct" position.

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