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Old 26th February 2019, 12:53 PM   #181
fernando
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Originally Posted by fernando
Can you establish a relation in that, according to what i have been told, the term "Kuthar" was used by Rajendralala Mitra (The Antiquaries of Orissa) in 1876, thus earlier than Egerton adopted the term "Katar"...

Not so significant for the matter but, i should have written 1876 instead of 1896.
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Old 26th February 2019, 01:29 PM   #182
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Originally Posted by fernando
Not so significant for the matter but, i should have written 1876 instead of 1896.


Not so significant for the matter. The example I gave refers to 1860
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Old 26th February 2019, 02:15 PM   #183
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
An almost literal translation of Jamdhar Katari would be something like “ Sharp-edged cutter of the God of Death”.
India is a multiethnic, multilingual country with a millennial history of mass migrations. One needs to be well-versed in its minute details of history and fluent in several of its languages to even start thinking about the meaning of its weapons’ names. Otherwise, it is the lowest degree of the infamous “name game” ...

Yet the name game, for as much as we (sort of) forget, is an irreplaceable component of our spoken communication, right after we abandoned our ape stage of expressing ourselves by gestures. We have to get hold of alternative tricks like the consuetudinary resource to consider the determined name of one thing as being we are all talking about ... even with exceptions taken into account.
I recall illustreous Professor Agostinho da Silva )1906-1994) in that, every time they asked him his ideas on a subject, he started by recalling the etymology of the term, before unequivocally lecturing on such topic.
I wonder to which extent, if any, India's profusion of languages comprehends Western European tongues but, even if just for fun, it is worthy to note, within the Katar-Kutar saga that, in my lingo we say "Cortar" for cutting, from the Latin Curtăre. Can't deny the resemblance .
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Old 26th February 2019, 05:36 PM   #184
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I don't think there can be any doubt that many cognate words diffused widely through cultures as languages and dialects evolved from the root languages over time.
The use of the term katar, regardless of spelling, is not really in question but it seems that Egerton who wrote his book in over 10 years prior to first publication in 1880 (republished 1896) transposed the term from the jamdhar -kitari to the transverse grip jamdhar (we now call katar).

As we cannot say for sure when, in the years compiling his data Egerton made this error, we can presume it was well prior to 1880.

Prior to this time, in India, these transverse grip daggers were known as jamdhar (= tooth of god of death, or to that effect). I was unaware of the use of the term 'kuttar' in Russia in 1860 in cataloging of the holdings of the Tsarskye Selo arsenal, and would be interested to know what the weapon described looked like.
If this was indeed the transverse grip 'jamdhar' type, then we may establish the error(?) to precede Egerton, and question whether Pant (1980) had sound evidence of the jamdhar term being correct for these in the first place.


We know, from the extensive research Jens has done over many years, that the term katar has been in use since about 13th century and of course for a dagger, but what type we do not know as no illustrations exist until much later.


We know that the "Ain I Akbari" , Abu'l Fazi , written in years 1551-1602, had a 'fist dagger' called 'maustika' looking of course like a rudimentary katar.

The term katar seems well represented in a number of Indian languages , where the Tamil 'kattari' became the Sanskrit 'katara' (the a dropped later).

With the 'katar' term this deeply embedded in various other languages specifically referring to the transverse grip daggers, I cannot help but question if the term jamdhar evolved as an alternate term at some point.

In this case Egerton was right all along, and the combining of the two terms jamdar-kitari to describe these curious daggers was perhaps Egerton trying to use both terms due to the character of the hilts.

While the katar has an 'H' shaped hilt it is vertically oriented and meant to be held transversely.

The jamdhar-kitari has an 'H' shaped hilt which is horizontal, that is meant to be gripped in the traditional dagger manner.


So possibly the 'katar' term has been correctly describing these transverse grip daggers all along...….and the conundrum brought up by Pant in 1980 setting off a red herring that has persisted since.
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Old 26th February 2019, 07:00 PM   #185
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall

Prior to this time, in India, these transverse grip daggers were known as jamdhar (= tooth of god of death, or to that effect). I was unaware of the use of the term 'kuttar' in Russia in 1860 in cataloging of the holdings of the Tsarskye Selo arsenal, and would be interested to know what the weapon described looked like.
If this was indeed the transverse grip 'jamdhar' type, then we may establish the error(?) to precede Egerton, and question whether Pant (1980) had sound evidence of the jamdhar term being correct for these in the first place.


Jim, in my opinion in the picture that I attached to the subject, it is clearly seen that in the catalog of weapons from Tsarskoye Selo is described the transverse grip 'jamdhar' type... Post № 180
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Old 26th February 2019, 07:35 PM   #186
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mahratt
Jim, in my opinion in the picture that I attached to the subject, it is clearly seen that in the catalog of weapons from Tsarskoye Selo is described the transverse grip 'jamdhar' type... Post № 180


Thank you for redirecting that, I overlooked it. So there we have the transverse grip c. 1860 which would likely precede Egerton's notes even if as early as 1860s-70s. It seems unlikely that Egerton would have had access to Russian notes or materials given the climate of relations in these times with Crimean War and its aftermath.


Again, I question Pant's declaration of the proper term for the transverse grip dagger being jamdhar, and suggest perhaps it was an alternative term. This of course completely overturns the notion I have long held that Pant was correct, and now compels rethinking.


That is the thing with research and assertions which have long stood sacrosanct in venerable volumes and long held views in the arms community, they are always subject to revision. Most authors not only expect this, but implore it, as the search for truth and accuracy needs to be relentless.
'
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Old 26th February 2019, 07:50 PM   #187
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
We know that the "Ain I Akbari" , Abu'l Fazi , written in years 1551-1602, had a 'fist dagger' called 'maustika' looking of course like a rudimentary katar.

Jim, excuse me, I do not know very well the whole text of "Ain I Akbari", but in the chapter on weapons there is definitely no such dagger.
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Old 26th February 2019, 08:16 PM   #188
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In the 19th, 20th, 21th and even in 31th centuries, we can call these daggers as we please. But it is perfect for sure that in the 16th century the wide dagger with transverse grip was called "jamdhar", and the narrow dagger with ordinary handle - katar. This is documented facts.

Jim, you are absolutely right that the word "katara" was widespread in India. This word was used for all type of weapons that could cut (before the catalog of Lord Egerton became known in India through the work of Dr. Pant). Like all swords were "tulwars".

Very interesting how Kafirs themself called their daggers? I strongly suspect that "chura" or so. Didn't they?
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Old 26th February 2019, 08:40 PM   #189
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Originally Posted by Mercenary
In the 19th, 20th, 21th and even in 31th centuries, we can call these daggers as we please. But it is perfect for sure that in the 16th century the wide dagger with transverse grip was called "jamdhar", and the narrow dagger with ordinary handle - katar. This is documented facts.

Jim, you are absolutely right that the word "katara" was widespread in India. This word was used for all type of weapons that could cut (before the catalog of Lord Egerton became known in India through the work of Dr. Pant). Like all swords were "tulwars".

Very interesting how Kafirs themself called their daggers? I strongly suspect that "chura" or so. Didn't they?



I surely don't know the text of these volumes either of the Ain I Akbari, the corpus of the the "Akbarnama" of Mughal culture. I only know the plates I have seen with the transverse grip which I believe was called 'moustika', and this term is another puzzling type of gauntlet type weapon seen in Stone and Calvert ("Spanish Arms and Armor". 1907).

It is great to know that the term jamdhar was documented as for the transverse grip in 16th c. and I do know that katar was used for the regular hilt dagger as shown in Burton and Stone et al.
What I was trying to determine was at what point the terms became switched.
While it seems moot, it does make a difference in reading early contemporary accounts where we cannot visually know the weapon they refer to.

The term chura, if I recall correctly and understand, was a colloquial term used in Northwest Frontier regions for small knives of the pesh kabz variety. I do not think the Kalash (Kafirs) people would have that term in their lexicon, but who knows, dialects diffuse through these regions. That would be a good thing to look into further.
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Old 26th February 2019, 08:43 PM   #190
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
Thank you for redirecting that, I overlooked it. So there we have the transverse grip c. 1860 which would likely precede Egerton's notes even if as early as 1860s-70s. It seems unlikely that Egerton would have had access to Russian notes or materials given the climate of relations in these times with Crimean War and its aftermath.
'


Dear Jim, you will be surprised, but Egerton saw items of weapons with descriptions from Tsarskoe Selo. This information is in his book:
A Description of Indian and Oriental Armour: Illustrated from the Collection Formerly in the India Office, Now Exhibited at South Kensington, and the Author's Private Collection
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Old 26th February 2019, 08:50 PM   #191
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall

Thank you for redirecting that, I overlooked it. So there we have the transverse grip c. 1860 which would likely precede Egerton's notes even if as early as 1860s-70s. It seems unlikely that Egerton would have had access to Russian notes or materials given the climate of relations in these times with Crimean War and its aftermath.



Jim, in Egerton's book there is a short chapter about Malayan and Indonesian arms. Plate VIII in it contains some quite detailed drawings of a Keris in the collection of Czar of Russia. So there is at least a possibility he has access to some materials from Russia.
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Old 26th February 2019, 09:20 PM   #192
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mahratt
Dear Jim, you will be surprised, but Egerton saw items of weapons with descriptions from Tsarskoe Selo. This information is in his book:
A Description of Indian and Oriental Armour: Illustrated from the Collection Formerly in the India Office, Now Exhibited at South Kensington, and the Author's Private Collection



Mahratt and Gustav, thank you so much guys!!! This is what discussion is all about......sharing info which someone is unaware of and which very much alters comments and observations. Excellent!!!!
I do not know the Tsarskoe Selo collection and totally missed these details in Egerton.
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Old 26th February 2019, 09:21 PM   #193
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Yes, and the frontispiece shows sabers from the Tsarskoye Selo collection.
How Kaffirs themselves called their daggers? Since in the past they were at least in part Hinduists and the language of Hinduism was Sanskrit, they likely called any knife/dagger Ch'hura.
When they became Muslims, the Turkish influence ( if there was one) would advocate for Chaqu.
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Old 27th February 2019, 04:27 AM   #194
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
The term chura, if I recall correctly and understand, was a colloquial term used in Northwest Frontier regions for small knives of the pesh kabz variety. I do not think the Kalash (Kafirs) people would have that term in their lexicon, but who knows, dialects diffuse through these regions. That would be a good thing to look into further.


In the opinion of Trail Ronald L. and Cooper Gregory R. The "knife" in Kalash sounds: "katar" (Kalasha Dictionary)
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Old 27th February 2019, 06:33 AM   #195
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fernando
I wonder to which extent, if any, India's profusion of languages comprehends Western European tongues but, even if just for fun, it is worthy to note, within the Katar-Kutar saga that, in my lingo we say "Cortar" for cutting, from the Latin Curtăre. Can't deny the resemblance .


You are not imagining.

Proto-Indo-European (PIE) languages include Greek and Italic. Latin is just one of the offshots of Italic.
“Cutting” and “knife” are very basic words. Such words, necessary for oral communication between the members of very early human communities, seem to share common elements. Mother in Sanskrit is Amba, in most modern Indian languages it is Amma, Maa or Ammee, and in virtually all European languages it does not even require a professional translator:-)
Father in Sanskrit is Pitar ( Latin Pater), water is wodr and fire is paewr or agni ( Lat. ignis) in PIE, etc.

Sir William Jones still rules!

Trick question: who knows why the old name of Iran was Pars ( Persia) , but their language is Farsi? As they say on TV games “The answers will surprise you!”. Hint: it has nothing to do with complex ancient linguistics.

Just for the fun of it:-)
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Old 27th February 2019, 08:34 AM   #196
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Originally Posted by ariel
... Trick question: who knows why the old name of Iran was Pars ( Persia) , but their language is Farsi? As they say on TV games “The answers will surprise you!”. Hint: it has nothing to do with complex ancient linguistics. ...

Simplified answer. Persian/Persia are exonyms probably first coined by the Greeks around 500 BCE to describe the inhabitants of Pars, then extended to those on the Iranian Plateau. The Romans then adopted the term Persia to describe the same area.


Farsi is an endonym, also derived from the regional name Pars, to describe the main language of Iran.


Ian.
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Old 27th February 2019, 09:40 AM   #197
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Yes, all true....
But why the language of Pars is Farsi? Why the F- word?
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Old 27th February 2019, 03:47 PM   #198
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Yes, all true....
But why the language of Pars is Farsi? Why the F- word?


Does it have to do with the use of Persian/Arabic script not having a letter for "p"?! "Pars" is also written as "Fars" in Nasta-liq. The Fars province in Iran is also called Pars.

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Old 27th February 2019, 05:05 PM   #199
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I always find linguistics fascinating, and this part of the discussion is truly interesting. It is a very big part of arms study, as we have always seen with what we here have called 'the name game' affectionately, however while I once somewhat dismissed the relevance, I have come to view it quite differently.

Regarding my misspeaking on the Tsarkoe Selo Collection and my assumption that Egerton may not have had insight into it...…..I wanted to thank Mahratt again for correcting me. With that I finally 'excavated' my copy of Egerton, and realized I should have gone to it in the first place rather than relying on my clearly fallible memory

As Ariel noted, indeed the frontispiece was FROM that Russian collection, and Egerton describes specifically the value of these folio/volumes which he was quite aware of as he began his collecting in 1855 (he published in 1880).


Here Mercenary directed that the use of the term 'jamdhar' was clearly used for the transverse grip dagger which we now term katar (Egerton, p.23 shows the illustrated page from Ain I Akbari) . As Mercenary suggested it WAS indeed documented as the term here and it was 16th century.

In the same page, the Ain I Akbari illustrates the very dagger of the Kafir/Kalash as the 'katarah' as the vertical H shape hilt (pommel and guard perpendicular to grip).


It was suggested that perhaps the term ch'hura (choora) might have been used to describe these Kafir daggers. Here I would note discussions going back to 2007 regarding the more commonly known daggers of Khyber regions termed 'choora' by collectors today.

Egerton plate XIV shows one of these (#624) and describes it as a pesh kabz. It is further attributed to 'Banu' and the embossed brass mounts noted.

Banu refers to Bannuchi tribe of Khyber regions who use a small hafted pick termed 'Lohar' (Stone). It is interesting that these lohar picks are often of the same character and decoration as the 'pesh kabz' form which we now term 'choora'.


Apparently if I recall research correctly (here I go again) Lohar refers to a dialect of Hindi and the people who were itinerant blacksmiths and metal workers who frequented Northwest Frontier regions, and somehow the term became applied to these small picks.


This would add impetus to the notion that ch'hura, a colloquial term in Sanskrit with various connotations might be applied to these pesh kabz variant form knives. While attributed often to the Mahsud tribes, they of course were widely found, and in effect seem to be smaller versions of the T blade 'karud', another knife which seems to have been considered in the pesh kabz spectrum in the 1860s and even by Holstein (1931).


So in summary, it would seem that jamdhar indeed was known term for transverse grip dagger in 16th c. and the traditional dagger with wide pommel and guard (of the form used by Kalash) was known as katarah.


The term ch'hura (which term also seems well known in Hindu bridal beads) does not seem likely to have been used by Kalash for these daggers. In my view the ch'hura term was likely misinterpreted in seeking terms for specific weapons as noted in the 2007 discussions.

This was likely in the manner of presuming the term for the small picks, often fashioned by the Lohar people, and the decoration etc. of these as well as the fancy daggers might have had the term ch'hura used in conversation asking for terms called by. Perhaps reference to the fancy Hindu bridal beads etc. ? It does not seem the pejorative connotation of ch'hura used otherwise would be the case.


Attached are the 'choora' dagger and the haft/hilt of the lohar axe.....note the similar 'beak' effect at pommel which seem shared in many examples, and the similarity on decoration and materials.
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Old 27th February 2019, 05:18 PM   #200
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
... “Cutting” and “knife” are very basic words. Such words, necessary for oral communication between the members of very early human communities, seem to share common elements.

Speaking of which, when searching the 1206 pages of Luso-Asiatic Glossary (Monsenhor Sebastiăo Dalgado 1919) one most surprisingly can not find the term katar (or catar, as the K is absent in Portuguese) as a weapon, but finds (possible) analogies in that the term is related with light slim and fast boats that cut the waves (bolds are mine). Fray Joăo Moura derives it from the Persian Kătür, which however there are no records of such dictations in Arabic and Persian. Crooke suggests as possible ethym the sanscrit chatura "legere". However Dalgado goes for the version malaiala kattiri or neo-Arico Kătar, from the sanscrit kartari "scissors" literally cutter, from the verb krt "to cut". Dalgado further opines that this boat could well be called katar, which is employed in various metaphoric senses like, in Concani, truss, pyramid, obelisc.
On the other hand, the term katar (or catar) in his strict wording only appears as Persian-Arabic "qatâr", meaning a set of (often seven) camels or mules, used by cargo collectors that cover all Persia transporting goods from a city to another (Domingos Vieira 1529).
As i first said, among 1250 pages of terms picked or shared with Asians since the XV century. Unless some unknown transliteration prevents from reaching further.
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Old 28th February 2019, 02:16 AM   #201
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Originally Posted by mariusgmioc
Does it have to do with the use of Persian/Arabic script not having a letter for "p"?! "Pars" is also written as "Fars" in Nasta-liq. The Fars province in Iran is also called Pars.


Bravo!
Only the matter is not in the absense of a letter “p”, but of a sound “p”.
Arabs replace it with either f or b.
Old biblical town Shkhem after the destruction of the Second Temple was re-named Neapolis by the victorious Romans. When the Arab captured it in the VII century, they kept the Roman name, but pronounced it as Nablus. A beautiful stream with waterfalls at the Northern Golan Heights was a spa town for Roman officers. They called it Panus ( one of the minor deities, always drunk and horny). Arabs call it Banias.
That is how you find them in Wiki even today.

The easiest example of a p-to-f transition is old biblical Plishtin becoming Palestina by Roman decree and Filastin in Arabic.

Just for a change, we are not dealing here with complex linguistical constructions, just with the simplest phonetics,yes siree:-) . Kind of like Kard/Karud.

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Old 28th February 2019, 03:20 AM   #202
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Jim McDougall:
“I once somewhat dismissed the relevance, I have come to view it quite differently.”
——————————————————————————————


Jim,
I am glad you have seen the light:-)
History of everything consists of multiple facets and needs to be looked at from different angles.

The “ name game” can be ridiculous or enlightening depending on the question asked and the quality of an answer. But the same is true about engineering aspects of different weapons, their usage, materials, decorations, etc.

Each and every approach adds something new and potentially important to our understanding of the fascinating subject of the history of weapons. Ignoring names or mis-naming the objects is as detrimental to our understanding of their history as ignoring their sacral meanings.

I have a term for it, “ The Rumpelstiltskin syndrome”: know my name and you become my master. And the corollary: misname me at your peril.

In a way, our Kris colleagues got it right: they are meticulous about naming different pamors and minute details of structure and decorations and correlating them with local traditions of manufacture, sacral and mystical features of their objects of interest, names of masters, materials, age etc. I tried but could never become really interested in Indonesian weapons, but I admire their aficionados.

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Old 28th February 2019, 04:50 AM   #203
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Jim McDougall:
“I once somewhat dismissed the relevance, I have come to view it quite differently.”
——————————————————————————————


Jim,
I am glad you have seen the light:-)
History of everything consists of multiple facets and needs to be looked at from different angles.

The “ name game” can be ridiculous or enlightening depending on the question asked and the quality of an answer. But the same is true about engineering aspects of different weapons, their usage, materials, decorations, etc.

Each and every approach adds something new and potentially important to our understanding of the fascinating subject of the history of weapons. Ignoring names or mis-naming the objects is as detrimental to our understanding of their history as ignoring their sacral meanings.

I have a term for it, “ The Rumpelstiltskin syndrome”: know my name and you become my master. And the corollary: misname me at your peril.

In a way, our Kris colleagues got it right: they are meticulous about naming different pamors and minute details of structure and decorations and correlating them with local traditions of manufacture, sacral and mystical features of their objects of interest, names of masters, materials, age etc. I tried but could never become really interested in Indonesian weapons, but I admire their aficionados.




Ariel, it does seem I have a good number of ephiphanies of late.......does this mean Im getting old?

I like the Rumpelstiltskin bit!!!!
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Old 28th February 2019, 06:29 AM   #204
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You are not the only one with epiphanies:-)
But, as they say, not always wisdom comes with old age, sometimes old age comes alone.And.....youth is wasted on the young.
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Old 28th February 2019, 03:08 PM   #205
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
... But, as they say, not always wisdom comes with old age, sometimes old age comes alone. And.....youth is wasted on the young.

Brilliant ...and so true .
Another one to be beaten is:
“Information is not knowledge.
Knowledge is not wisdom.
Wisdom is not truth.... “
FZ (1940-1993).

- Herewith an Indo-Portuguese oil painting depicting three Malabar warriors with musket, tulwar, katar, shield an pata. In the back a view of Pangim over the river Mandovi, backed by the fortresses of Aguada and Reis Magos.
(collection Georg Scheder-Bieschin. How i envy this guy

... And by the way, pick one of these below... from the said glossary. "Cotari" was the key (in Portuguese).



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Old 28th February 2019, 07:49 PM   #206
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
In a way, our Kris colleagues got it right: they are meticulous about naming different pamors and minute details of structure and decorations and correlating them with local traditions of manufacture, sacral and mystical features of their objects of interest, names of masters, materials, age etc.

I dare say we'd be lost in there without nomenclature Ariel.
On the other hand, many features have multiple names depending upon the particular keris culture we are discussing.
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Old 1st March 2019, 04:52 PM   #207
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I dare say we'd be lost in there without nomenclature Ariel.
On the other hand, many features have multiple names depending upon the particular keris culture we are discussing.


The keris has to me always been one of the most daunting fields of study, not only for the variety and scope of the form, but the very subjective and powerful traditions held deeply in their tradition. I have always admired the tenacity and dedication of those who have mastered these complexities.

With what I do know of keris study is that the nomenclature does seem pretty clearly set, and while there are dialectic variations in expressing these terms, they do not seem to carry as much dispute as with transliterations and colloquial misunderstandings with other ethnographic forms. If I am not mistaken, my limited foray into the keris field seemed as if the terms were often cross references or noted with variations to eliminate misunderstandings.

That is what I wish could be better accomplished in the study of these various ethnographic forms, to simply cross reference the various terms rather than place an adamant classification which will inevitably be disputed.
As has been said many times, according to ones perspective, the same weapon will be referred to by various terms, and the use of variant terms affords more universal understanding.

As noted, the nomenclature is very essential in the understanding of the complex nature of the keris and its varying forms culturally, just as we study other ethnographic weapon forms in similar manner.
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Old 25th May 2019, 06:04 PM   #208
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Old 25th May 2019, 06:32 PM   #209
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Cool.
What is this from, any info? What is the purpose of the image?
Nice to see this thread again, but what are we looking at?
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Old 25th May 2019, 07:25 PM   #210
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Cool.
What is this from, any info? What is the purpose of the image?
Nice to see this thread again, but what are we looking at?


Using of katar. Maybe piercing through the mail.

Illustration from Genghis-nama. Mugals, 16c.
"Turkish tribes slay Jenghiz Khan's ancestors in the Land of Argune-Kun"
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