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Old 19th March 2020, 01:32 PM   #1
mariusgmioc
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Default Origin of HANCER daggers

Here we have one that belonged to Osman Bey and was made in Damascus, Syria.

Now let us try to find more of the same kind with incriptions containing the place of origin, in the hope we can accurately locate more of them and eventually establish a pattern.
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Old 19th March 2020, 01:34 PM   #2
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Here we have a second one attributed to Turkey and dated 1187 corresponding to 1773 AD.

Maybe Kwiatek will be kind enough to translate the text for us so we cand know where exactly does it come from...
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Old 19th March 2020, 03:21 PM   #3
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Interesting that the second one is described as "... generally attributed to Albania or Montenegro". And then mentions its issuance to the " Balkan mercenaries"; those were by and large Albanians.
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Old 19th March 2020, 05:04 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Interesting that the second one is described as "... generally attributed to Albania or Montenegro". And then mentions its issuance to the " Balkan mercenaries"; those were by and large Albanians.


Isn't this exactly what Kubur said?!

And further continues saying they were in fact typical Turkish and of probable Kurdish origin... which is consistent with what Elgood said.

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Old 21st March 2020, 09:58 PM   #5
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More of these, they are called by collectors and dealers "Albanian jambiya".
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Old 21st March 2020, 09:59 PM   #6
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As you can see some of them have hilts more Kurdish in style...
To support Marius point and the link with Persian blades, I think the Kurds are the link: from today Turkey to Syria up to Iran...
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Old 21st March 2020, 11:25 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubur
To support Marius point and the link with Persian blades, I think the Kurds are the link: from today Turkey to Syria up to Iran...

I will also support this opinion and supplement it - at that time many Kurds lived in Armenia and Georgia, especially in Tiflis.
I also read that the city of Mosul was famous for its wootz, until the Mongols captured it in the XIII century. Perhaps later the tradition was restored, but I do not know about it.
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Old 22nd March 2020, 01:26 AM   #8
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Interesting twist on the story.

However, it is my understanding that Armenian and Georgian Kurds engaged mainly in agriculture and menial jobs such as porters.

The list of Caucasian armorers in Astvatsaturyan’s books does not include obvious Kurdish names and does not mention their involvement in the production of weapons.

Do you have any information to the contrary?
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Old 22nd March 2020, 01:42 AM   #9
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A totally crazy idea: is it possible that when we ( or some of us) attribute such daggers to Albania, the real Albania is not the Balkan one , but the Caucasian Albania? It was a historical area comprising of current Azerbaijan and Daghestan, and its inhabitants were of Iranic origin.
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Old 22nd March 2020, 08:57 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ren Ren
I will also support this opinion and supplement it - at that time many Kurds lived in Armenia and Georgia, especially in Tiflis.
I also read that the city of Mosul was famous for its wootz, until the Mongols captured it in the XIII century. Perhaps later the tradition was restored, but I do not know about it.


Sorry my post wasn't clear enough. I didn’t say that the Kurds were at the origin of these daggers. I was saying that Kurds helped the diffusion of these daggers. I / we don't know if these daggers originate from the East (Iran) or the West (Turkey). Maybe you are right, and Kurds are at the origin of these daggers...

Some rich Kurds...
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Old 22nd March 2020, 08:17 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Interesting twist on the story.
However, it is my understanding that Armenian and Georgian Kurds engaged mainly in agriculture and menial jobs such as porters.

Among the peoples of Transcaucasia, the Kurds were known as desperate robbers of trade caravans and cattle abductors.
However, this does not contradict the fact that part of the Kurds served as gatekeepers. Similarly, in modern India, the Gurkhas serve. But these are those who were unable to enlist in the Army or private military companies.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
The list of Caucasian armorers in Astvatsaturyan’s books does not include obvious Kurdish names and does not mention their involvement in the production of weapons.

I think that customer preferences affect the fashion and style of weapons more than the ethnic origin of gunsmiths. For example, the Armenian gunsmiths living in Tiflis worked perfectly in both the Caucasian and European styles.
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Old 22nd March 2020, 08:29 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubur
Sorry my post wasn't clear enough. I didn’t say that the Kurds were at the origin of these daggers. I was saying that Kurds helped the diffusion of these daggers. I / we don't know if these daggers originate from the East (Iran) or the West (Turkey). Maybe you are right, and Kurds are at the origin of these daggers...

Thank you, I understand you well. I think that this topic can be seen as an attempt at a brainstorming session, and any more or less close thought can be useful.

It would be very interesting for me to learn the opinion of Kwiatek about the handwriting styles by which the inscriptions were made.
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Old 23rd March 2020, 02:28 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ren Ren
Among the peoples of Transcaucasia, the Kurds were known as desperate robbers of trade caravans and cattle abductors.
However, this does not contradict the fact that part of the Kurds served as gatekeepers. Similarly, in modern India, the Gurkhas serve. But these are those who were unable to enlist in the Army or private military companies.

I think that customer preferences affect the fashion and style of weapons more than the ethnic origin of gunsmiths. For example, the Armenian gunsmiths living in Tiflis worked perfectly in both the Caucasian and European styles.


I think we are talking about different things.
Of course, Kurds were engaged in occupations other than robbers and porters.
I am asking whether there is any information of them working as armorers: bladesmiths, gunsmiths, jewelers etc.
Do you have any such info?
The same is true about ethnic origins of a master. Of course, not. But my question remains the same: do you know of any Kurds professionally involved in weapon manufacture in Georgia, Armenia or North Caucasus?
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Old 23rd March 2020, 09:32 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
I think we are talking about different things.

Yes, we are talking about different things.
I have no information about gunsmiths of Kurdish origin, because I did not look for her.
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Old 23rd March 2020, 10:01 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
I think we are talking about different things.
Of course, Kurds were engaged in occupations other than robbers and porters.
But my question remains the same: do you know of any Kurds professionally involved in weapon manufacture in Georgia, Armenia or North Caucasus?


We know your interest for Caucasus and Central asia but I think this post is about Ottoman Turkish daggers with walrus hilts...

About Kurds, from Saladin to today's wars in Irak and Syria, they showed their great capacities as warriors.

You have on this forum a video showing a Kurd blacksmith.

Not to mention the Kurdish shield very often described as Ottoman Turkish shield.

Dealers and collectors who mentioned Albanian jambiya refereed to present day Albania in the Balkans. I never heard about Caucasian Albania.
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Old 23rd March 2020, 10:47 AM   #16
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I checked Rivkin's book on the "Arms and Armor of the Caucasus" and this ttype of daggers isn't even mentioned.

Now regarding Kurdish origins... well there are many stylistical similarities with other Kurdish daggers of more certaind origins (see photoas attached - the blades and decoration of the blades), but they also have the "hooked" hilt that is very specific and uncommon with Kurdish daggers.

However, I believer the "hooked" hilt has some similarity with the hooked Yataghan hilts and with some Turkish bicaq hilts (see photo).

That's why I am inclined towards the Turkish origin of these daggers.
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Old 23rd March 2020, 10:53 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubur
I never heard about Caucasian Albania.


Google it. Not many know about it.
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Old 23rd March 2020, 12:19 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Google it. Not many know about it.


Exactly! Not many know about it.

So, when authors or collectors were referring to these daggers as "Albanian" daggers they were referring to the Albanian Albania, and not to the "Caucasian Albania."

Moreover, the point here is to realistically try to establish the origin of these daggers and since they quite certainly are not from the Caucasus area, there is little point to speculate about the "Caucasian Albania"...
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Old 23rd March 2020, 04:41 PM   #19
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Old son, I have warned you from the git go it was a crazy idea.

But at least you know now about two Albanias:-)

Useless informations are the most precious ones.
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Old 23rd March 2020, 06:04 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Google it. Not many know about it.


Thanks, always good to learn something.
Plus I saw a Caucasian Iberia... more and more confusing...
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Old 23rd March 2020, 06:10 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mariusgmioc
That's why I am inclined towards the Turkish origin of these daggers.


The two first daggers that you posted are often described as Baghdadi jambiya.
They are very similar to the Kurdish ones but with silver filigree fittings.
I might be wrong but it will be good to focus only on the first dagger that you posted as the shape is different from the others.
But I agree that they share many features.
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Old 14th April 2020, 09:30 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mariusgmioc
Here we have a second one attributed to Turkey and dated 1187 corresponding to 1773 AD.

Maybe Kwiatek will be kind enough to translate the text for us so we cand know where exactly does it come from...


Again, it is possible to make suggestions for individual words, but I do not think the inscription as a whole reads or that the person who made it knew what they were inscribing/copying. The date of 1187, however, is legible
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Old 14th April 2020, 09:31 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubur
As you can see some of them have hilts more Kurdish in style...
To support Marius point and the link with Persian blades, I think the Kurds are the link: from today Turkey to Syria up to Iran...


The one with the dark handle has a Turkish poetic inscription I've only ever seen on yataghans. Interesting piece
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Old 4th May 2020, 11:50 PM   #24
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Default origin of the name Bıçak

Bıçak: knife EN[1] oldTR biç-/bıç- +gAk → biç- oldTR kınğırak (et bıçağı TR; meat knife EN). biçek/bıçak [ Divan-i Lugat-it Türk, 1070] Bel bıçağı, et bıçağı, kıyma bıçağı, kaymak bıçağı, pastırma bıçağı, börek bıçağı, bekçi bıçağı , kasap bıçağı. from oldTR[ Kaşgarî, Divan-i Lugati't-Türk, 1073] biçek: as-sikkīn [bıçak] (...) as-sayf [kılıç]; oldTR: [ Kutadgu Bilig, 1069] bıçaḳ tartma anda kötürme süŋük [bıçak çekme orda ve kemik taşıma oldTR bıçak/biçek kesme aleti oldTR *bıçġak < ETü bıç- +(g)Ak
Oldest source: biçek/bıçak "aynı anlamda" [Divan-i Lugat-it Türk (1070)]

The bichaq is a single-edged dagger of Turkish origin. It is widespread in areas controlled by the Ottoman Empire and its close neighbors.
The blade of this knife is either straight, holds a slight forward curve, like a short yataghan, or very rarely a backwards curve, like a jambiya.
This knife and others were made at the end of 19th century. They were often sold as souvenirs to officers of the Austro-Hungarian Empire who invaded Bosnia at the time. The principal centers of production were Sarajevo and Foca.

source of the above : costak.blogspot.com / date Friday, July 05, 2019
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Old 5th May 2020, 12:12 AM   #25
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Default origin of the names of Ottoman Daggers like Bıçak

also often used in the countries of the former Ottoman empire next to Biçak, Bicak / Bicaq the names Hancer/ Handschar/Hançar and Kama:


Hançer: dagger EN[2] fromAR ḥancar حنجر kısa savunma bıçağı Aramaic χangərā חנגרא a.a. (= Sogdian χangar a.a. ) dagger[1], knife [2]
[ Dede Korkut Kitabı, c.1400] Basatuŋ χançeri varıdı; edügünü yardı from Arabic ḥancar حنجر kısa savunma bıçağı TR; short defensive knife EN; from Aramaic χangərā חנגרא Sogdian χangar)

Oldest source: [Dede Korkut Kitabı (before c. 1400) : Basatuñ hançeri varıdı; edügünü yardı]


Kama: dagger EN[2] ARM kam գամ çivi. Nail EN

Oldest source: kamamak "perçinlemek" [TDK, Tarama Sözlüğü (before c. 1600)]

kama "büyük çivi, ağaç takoz" [ Meninski, Thesaurus (1680) ]
kama "bir nevi hançer" [Ahmet Vefik Paşa, Lugat-ı Osmani (1876)]


source : costak.blogspot.com / Friday, July 05, 2019
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Old 30th May 2020, 05:47 PM   #26
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Some literature:

Niels A. Andersen, On some Political Gold Yatagans from Algiers and Tunis, Vaabenhistoriske Aarbĝger XIII, Kĝbenhavn 1966, page 159/226.
Esin Atil, The Age of Sultan Suleyman the Magnificent, Washington 1987, page 147, 152/153,
Maurice Bottet, La Manufacture d'Armes de Versailles, Boutet Directeur Artiste, Paris 1903,
Richard F. Burton, The Book of the Sword, London 1884, page 133/134. Anton Dolleczek, Monographie der k. u. k. österr.-ung. Blanken und Handfeuer-Waffen, Wien 1896/Graz 1970, page 32/33.
Jacob, Armes blanches page 114/123.
Dietrich Menz, Handschar/Yatagan, Deutsches Waffenjournal, Schwäbisch Hall 1967, Nr. 4 page 270/272.
Anthony North, Islamic Arms, London 1985, page 24/26
Marija Sercer, Jatagani u Povijesnom Muzeju Hrvatske, Zagreb 1975
Turgay Tezcan, Silahar, Topkapi Sarayi Müzesi, Istanbul 1983, page 32/33, 35.
Yatagane aus dem Historischen Museum von Kroatien in Zagreb, Katalog
Graz 1976
Vejsil Curcic , Starinsko Oruzje, Sarajevo 1926
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