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Old 7th March 2021, 12:19 PM   #1
francantolin
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Default balinese keriss ?

Hello dear members,

I'm not specialised in Keris,
I just receiveded these two,
The incomplete model seems recent and of poor quality,
the second one seems really better and a bit older,

maybe a signature on the brass? mounts ?

an old blade on a more recent scabbard ?

( fits well in )

Any help, comment is welcomed.
Kind regards
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Old 7th March 2021, 05:59 PM   #2
Jean
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Both krisses are in Solo dress (Central Java), may we see the younger blade in full please?
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Old 8th March 2021, 04:58 AM   #3
Interested Party
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I've always wondered why the Solo pendok is open in the front while the Dogya completely covers the wood of the gandjar. Is it for symbolic reasons or is it purely aesthetic?
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Old 8th March 2021, 07:49 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Interested Party
I've always wondered why the Solo pendok is open in the front while the Dogya completely covers the wood of the gandjar. Is it for symbolic reasons or is it purely aesthetic?


Not fully correct, blewah (open) style pendoks also exist in Yogya but are less common, see pic.
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Last edited by Jean : 8th March 2021 at 03:59 PM.
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Old 8th March 2021, 08:01 AM   #5
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The engravings on the pendok apparently read as 1807, but if the date uses the Javanese calendar, you have to add 78 so it is equivalent to 1885 AD.
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Old 8th March 2021, 08:20 PM   #6
francantolin
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Hello,
thank you all for your comments !!

1885 is already a nice surprise !
Thank's a lot Jean for the translation !!

For the second Kriss ,
I have these pictures for the moment...
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Old 9th March 2021, 08:07 AM   #7
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Hum, this is a recently made and common quality blade indeed
Please keep in mind that the dates engraved on the pendoks are not always correct (tricky sellers!) , however 1885 could be realistic.
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Old 9th March 2021, 11:01 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jean
Hum, this is a recently made and common quality blade indeed
Please keep in mind that the dates engraved on the pendoks are not always correct (tricky sellers!) , however 1885 could be realistic.

I agree on the second keris. Looks recent to my eye, at least from what i can see in the photos.
The engraving on the pendok on the first one seems to have age IMHO, though it's hard to say if it originally belongs on this sheath or was merely an old piece that was used to assemble this keris for sale by a dealer. However, the blade seems to be old as well anyway so i see no reason not to regard this as an antique keris and take the 1885 at face value.
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Old 10th March 2021, 08:49 AM   #9
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Yes, the blade looks old indeed and fitting quite well into the scabbard but the top of the pendok does not adjust well with the warangka on the reverse side (see first pic) so this is not an original setting IMO.
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Old 6th April 2021, 10:52 AM   #10
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I may be peremptorily dismissing out of hand any keris with a pendok upon which a date is engraved/stamped/chiseled, but...I usually do the same with pendok showing any lambang keraton...

There probably are in existence pendok with bona-fide dates on them, but almost all the examples I've seen are [to me] obviously bogus. I don't have time to get into what I consider to be telltale signs of fakery. Perhaps I should do so, however, when I have more time.

I may or may not have mentioned previously that I immediately lose all interest in any keris described as "previously owned by a senior abdi dalem of the court of Solokarta", again for reasons I don't have time to get into.

I once saw for sale a ploncon with a prominent date on the front [from the 1800s] in Javanese script, for an even number of keris. Perhaps it was completely genuine; it's possible. There was no way in hell that I was even going to bother calculating the exchange rate for this particular article, however, for reason(s) which I may get into if asked to do so, at some future time. (And my reasons may be completely wrong).

Now that I think about it, perhaps I really should write up a list of all the features which I (as an inexperienced keris accumulator, not a knowledgable collector) consider to be telltale indicators of fakery, as well as my reason(s).

There may well be a thread regarding this subject in the forum already; I'd be surprised if there was not. Or...now that I think about it...perhaps there isn't... Short of carbon dating and other forensic techniques...so much comes down to experience and education, and even with keris Sombro, it's not like we have her fingerprints to verify the genuine keris with...

I have one or two hilts which I believe to be carved from bone. I suspect that the prominent burn/ scorch marks on both of them are from a previous owner trying to ascertain whether or not they are synthetic...

Perhaps I should have just kept quiet; but it's 03:51 and I've spent too much time writing this to not post it.

Last edited by Mickey the Finn : 6th April 2021 at 11:12 AM. Reason: correction of spelling & grammar
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Old 14th April 2021, 09:49 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickey the Finn
I may be peremptorily dismissing out of hand any keris with a pendok upon which a date is engraved/stamped/chiseled, but...I usually do the same with pendok showing any lambang keraton...

There probably are in existence pendok with bona-fide dates on them, but almost all the examples I've seen are [to me] obviously bogus. I don't have time to get into what I consider to be telltale signs of fakery. Perhaps I should do so, however, when I have more time.

Instead of general discussion about fakes why don't we stick to the specific case here with the keris at hand? It is a pendok that does indeed display some age. How much is debatable. The numbers on the back (1807) do appear to have been inscribed there generally about the same time as the engraved designs. Could this pendok be as old as 1885 (the conversation if this was a date)? I'd wouldn't count that out. Are there really telltale signs with THIS pendok that make you think it is bogus? It is what you seem to be implying in you post. If so, maybe you could specifically talk about THIS pendok and the telltale signs to see that make it bogus for you. I mean, when you feel you have time.
But what you have failed to take into account is that it is just as likely that 1807 isn't a date at all, but rather some bit of numerology added to this pendok by the owner for reasons you and i will never know. We can't assume it is a date and so it might well be a mistake to dismiss it out of hand...certainly not "peremptorily".

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickey the Finn
I may or may not have mentioned previously that I immediately lose all interest in any keris described as "previously owned by a senior abdi dalem of the court of Solokarta", again for reasons I don't have time to get into.

Yeah, i would also be skeptical if someone made claims using the term "Court of Solokarta".

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickey the Finn
I once saw for sale a ploncon with a prominent date on the front [from the 1800s] in Javanese script, for an even number of keris. Perhaps it was completely genuine; it's possible. There was no way in hell that I was even going to bother calculating the exchange rate for this particular article, however, for reason(s) which I may get into if asked to do so, at some future time. (And my reasons may be completely wrong).

Well, i collect keris, not ploncon. For me a ploncon is simply a device to display keris. I might be a little bit concerned if the ploncon in question only held an even number of keris, given that everything to do with male oriented things in Javanese culture should be odd, but if the price was right even that might not matter in the end...or it might. But i would be less concerned about any dates inscribed on the wood.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickey the Finn
Now that I think about it, perhaps I really should write up a list of all the features which I (as an inexperienced keris accumulator, not a knowledgable collector) consider to be telltale indicators of fakery, as well as my reason(s).

There may well be a thread regarding this subject in the forum already; I'd be surprised if there was not. Or...now that I think about it...perhaps there isn't... Short of carbon dating and other forensic techniques...so much comes down to experience and education, and even with keris Sombro, it's not like we have her fingerprints to verify the genuine keris with...

I'm not sure what Mpu Sombro's fingerprints have to do with anything. Are you confusing Keris Picit with Keris Sombro? Keris Sombro do not necessarily present picit features. So i don't see how her fingerprints come into play. It is also pretty well accepted that Keris Sombro is usually used to describe a category of keris, a type, that displays certain features that may or may not include a hole in the end of the pesi. A Keris Sombro might display picit, but even if it did you could hardly lift a fingerprint from it. I don't believe most collectors believe that all, or even most keris that display these features were actually made my the legendary female mpu. So when someone is selling a Keris Sombro i don't think it can be called a fake just because it can't actually be traced to Mpu Sombro. BTW, I also doubt that most collectors believe the legend that she quenched here blades with her vulva...but i could be wrong.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickey the Finn
I have one or two hilts which I believe to be carved from bone. I suspect that the prominent burn/ scorch marks on both of them are from a previous owner trying to ascertain whether or not they are synthetic...

It is generally not too difficult to tell the difference between resin and bone/ivory/horn on close examination of a hilt, but if you are really not sure there is the hot pin method. I can't image a collector with any brains at all applying the hot pin in any prominent area of the keris in question, but even so i don't think it would leave anything so severe that it could be described as "scorch marks". Maybe these hilts were caught in a fire. I have recently seen quite a few resin hilts popping up on ePray. Even in bad internet auction photos they seem obviously fake. I'm not sure we need to take too much time talking about them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickey the Finn
Perhaps I should have just kept quiet; but it's 03:51 and I've spent too much time writing this to not post it.

Well, it seems i, as well, have spend far too much time writing this not to post it, but i felt there were a number of misconception that needed clearing up in your post and since no one else wanted to take it on...
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Old 14th April 2021, 11:06 PM   #12
A. G. Maisey
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One little thing I think I'd like to comment on, I emphasise "comment", I'm not interested in debating or arguing the point, I'm just expressing a personal opinion, accept if you will, reject if you will. Makes no difference to me either way.

Sixty or so years ago I would have accepted the idea of "fake" keris without a moment's thought. I would accept that anything with value could be presented as something that it was not and thus it had become a fake, the usual & obvious motivator for creation of a fake being to increase value.

Over the years my attitude has undergone some change.

I still think that there can be keris that have been deliberately falsified in one way or another to make them more valuable and more attractive to a potential buyer. However, my parameters for assessing a keris to be "fake" have altered.

The things that make a keris "fake" for most collectors who are outside core keris culture do not necessarily make a keris "fake" for somebody who is a part of that culture.

For example, going back 20-30 years the wise collectors of keris who were outside core keris culture would immediately identify as "fake" a keris that presented evidence of comparatively recent manufacture, but also appeared to have a slightly eroded finish to the blade surface. The overwhelming opinion amongst these experienced, knowledgeable collectors who were not a part of core keris culture was that such a keris was a deliberate fake, there had been an attempt to make it look old when in fact it was not. The evil forgers were at it again, trying to rip off the unwary.

As time has passed the truth of the matter has emerged from Darkest Jawa Tengah, and most collectors of keris now, whether experienced or not, seem to have become aware that the eroded blade surface on a recently made blade is something that is certainly done intentionally, and for a very good reason:- the biggest market for new keris is the local market in Indonesia, the keris is a required part of formal dress in many parts of Indonesia and there are only so many old keris to go around, so just like neckties, new keris need to be continually produced for local buyers, and the local market wants that slightly eroded finish. The customer is always right, so you give the customer what he wants --- at least you do if you want to stay in business.

The fact that collectors of keris who are outside the core keris culture consider that slightly eroded surface as an attempt at forgery is of absolutely no interest to the makers whose primary market is the local one.

There are many similar examples that could be quoted, but the simple fact is this:- as one learns more about the keris it becomes obvious that a number of things that are acceptable or desired by the local buyers of keris in Jawa & other places where the keris is a part of the culture, are things that for buyers outside that local market, are things that are regarded as fake, or forgery, or highly undesirable.

It is a matter of the applicable standard. Very often collectors from a different cultural base will have different standards for objects from a culture that is not their own to the standard that actually applies within the other culture.

Collectors make their own rules that apply to their own ideas of what should, and should not be regarded as authentic.

Now, be all of the above as it may.

Yes, there are definitely deliberate keris forgeries floating around, and believe me, they are very, very difficult to detect.

But almost nobody in the general collector market is ever going to have to worry about these forgeries, quite simply because the prices on these genuine forgeries are so high that they are beyond the means of most people. The real forgeries are priced about in line with motor vehicles, the lower priced ones are at about the level of a good used Toyota with low mileage, the higher priced ones are at about new Mercedes Benz level.

True forgeries are not designed to rip somebody off to the tune of ten or twenty bucks, or even a couple of hundred, they are intended to rip somebody off to the tune of around 10K to over 100K.

I really don't think that we need to worry too much about forged dates on things kicking around down at the bottom of the market.
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Old 15th April 2021, 02:44 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey

Yes, there are definitely deliberate keris forgeries floating around, and believe me, they are very, very difficult to detect.

But almost nobody in the general collector market is ever going to have to worry about these forgeries, quite simply because the prices on these genuine forgeries are so high that they are beyond the means of most people. The real forgeries are priced about in line with motor vehicles, the lower priced ones are at about the level of a good used Toyota with low mileage, the higher priced ones are at about new Mercedes Benz level.

True forgeries are not designed to rip somebody off to the tune of ten or twenty bucks, or even a couple of hundred, they are intended to rip somebody off to the tune of around 10K to over 100K.

I really don't think that we need to worry too much about forged dates on things kicking around down at the bottom of the market.



Just a bit of reflection regarding these keris forgers (please let me know if my logic is flawed). In my opinion, these keris forgers must be:

1. Very talented keris makers
2. Do not started their career as forgers

However their original works must be rejected/dismissed by the collectors, therefore they turned to forgery.

Is it because collectors tend to buy the stories or the “brands” (famous keris makers) than the keris itself?
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Old 15th April 2021, 05:38 AM   #14
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Sorry YS, I cannot answer those questions.

I do not know the makers of the type of thing that I'm talking about, anything I said would be guesswork only.
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