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Old 24th February 2011, 07:00 PM   #1
Robert
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Talking Another Civil War Knife Sold On Ebay

Well, I just won this "ANTIQUE OLD CIVIL WAR WESTERN BATTLE KNIFE ULTRA RARE" on ebay.
I has always amazed me how the Philippines seemed to be involved in suppling arms for the American Civil War. When I first found this item I contacted the seller and tried to explain to them that this was not from the American Civil War or for that matter from the U.S. at all, but as usual I was ignored. I decided to go ahead and place a bid on it anyway and hope for the best and as luck would have it when the auction ended I was very pleased to find that I had won. The knife looks to me to be of late 1890's to early 20th century Katipunan era. Most likely from Luzon and is very well made with a Carabao horn grip that still has most of the twisted brass wire still intact. It comes with what looks to be the original leather sheath with nice tooling, though it is showing its age. The overall length of the piece is 14 inches with a 9-1/2 inch blade. Because the piece looks to be made more for stabbing than for cutting would this be called a dagger or just a knife? The pictures below are from the auction. Any comments on this would be very welcome.

Robert
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Last edited by Robert Coleman : 25th February 2011 at 04:04 AM.
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Old 24th February 2011, 07:10 PM   #2
Dimasalang
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Im starting to really hate you now.

HAHA JK
Great find! Awesome Philippine/American Civil War piece. haha Gotta give it up to you Robert, you dig through ebay like no other. I catch myself at times doing the same, but it is a very tedious task to do so many searches day in and day out!

May I ask how much you won this one for? You can PM me if you wish to keep it private. My luckiest mislabeled find on ebay was a Visayan Dagger. It was labeled as WWII Japanese Dagger. Seller claimed his Grandfather was fighting in the Philippines and killed a Japanese soldier and took it from him...so this whole time they thought it was a Japanese weapon. I was the only bidder and got it for $10. It is nothing too detailed or crazy, but the scabbard and all the traditional looks and designs are there. I never posted or shared it here yet...maybe Ill post it up later.
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Old 24th February 2011, 07:35 PM   #3
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Hello Dimasalang, I sent you a PM. Yes, please do post pictures of your "Japanese knife" as I as well as others would definitely like to see it. Most of the items that I win on ebay are usually mislabeled. If they weren't, I probably would not be able to afford them.

Robert
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Old 25th February 2011, 05:22 AM   #4
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Nice piece! Congrats! Yes it is Luzono.

Dimasalang, don't hate him but love him, get to know him (and then steal his toys! ).
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Old 25th February 2011, 05:28 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Coleman
I has always amazed me how the Philippines seemed to be involved in suppling arms for the American Civil War.
Well what do you know? Now wonder we ran out of blades to use during the subsequent war

Congrats! And like Dimasalang, I also feel like shouting "argh!!" On the other hand, it's always comforting to know that it's now in very good hands.

It's definitely a Luzon piece (peened tang, twisted wire on hilt, blade profile, etc.), as am sure most can tell. One of its 'cousins' is with me (pic of sword attached). That one I have has horn hilt and twisted brass wire also.

As to the local name for a dagger, in Luzon it's called punyal (from Spanish puņal) or daga (from the Spanish daga, for dagger also).
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Old 25th February 2011, 05:33 AM   #6
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The thing am still finding out about these blades is the 'humpback' feature at the spine (the right end of the red dotted line in the att. pics).

Am not sure if this humpback feature points to a particular province or region in Luzon. Alternatively it can be a style that was broadly used. Am still not sure either way. Perhaps more pics can be posted in this thread so we put our minds together

p.s. - the pic with dark background is from erik farrow. the one with very light background is from artotec of ebay. thanks.
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Old 25th February 2011, 05:39 AM   #7
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Pics of other examples of humpback Luzon sundang (or tabak, and tabak is used if it is a war sword; while sundang is a generic word that can mean both a utility blade and a war sword), are attached.
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Old 25th February 2011, 08:10 AM   #8
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For anyone thinking of pilfering my toys you will first have to get by my well trained attack animals. The cat will strategically place himself between your feet while you walk tripping you at every move while the basset will slobber on your hands making it imposable to grip any sharp pointy objects. Together the are a formidable team who have thwarted any and all attempts of anyone trying to remove my toys from the premises. Below is a picture of this mighty team waiting to spring into action at any given moment.
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Old 25th February 2011, 08:29 AM   #9
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Migueldiaz, As for the 'humpback' feature you are referring to, I have a few examples that I will post in the mourning as it is late here and I am on my way to bed and sleep. I think all of the examples that I have with this shape are from Luzon but I will check and if there are others from any different locations I will post them as well.

My thanks to all who have commented so far on my latest addition.

Robert

P.S.
I know it looks like I am on the forum 24 hours a day but I just leave my computer on most of the time. It saves me alot of time this way.
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Old 25th February 2011, 11:02 AM   #10
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Thanks in advance, Robert!
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Old 25th February 2011, 03:22 PM   #11
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Well I am sure when I get to the Baltimore show their will be quite a few tables with Philippine knives being passed off as civil war and revolutionary war trophies . It amazes me how dumb or even dishonest some of these sellers are. Even when you confront them and tell them what it is they refuse to believe you . Btw very nice snag congrats!

Last edited by Lew : 25th February 2011 at 06:31 PM.
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Old 25th February 2011, 05:22 PM   #12
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Congratulaions Robert!! this a very good example of " civil war knives" , normally I look for this type of knives in Ebay but in this case I didnīt find this!!
Congratulations again
best regards
carlos
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Old 25th February 2011, 08:37 PM   #13
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Hello Robert,

congratulations to this find! I have thought that I am good to detect the sleepers/bargains by e-bay but you are the king!

Best regards,

Detlef
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Old 26th February 2011, 03:11 PM   #14
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Migueldiaz, Now I know who it was that won that beautiful Luzon sword. I even started a thread right after the auction had ended asking if anyone here on the forum had won it. I am very glad that it was you that won the bid on it (knowing that it has a good home now) but would have been happier if it had been me. It is by far the nicest one of this style that I have ever seen and in such great condition too. I WANT IT, I WANT IT, I WANT IT !!!
I will be posting pictures of the blades that I have that are similar to the humpbacked ones you posted later today. I would have had it done already but yesterday was a bad one for my family (medical problems with a Grandson) and my wife and I did not not return home until late last night. Everything is better today and he will be fine.

Lew, I have noticed that with the economy being down it seems that a greater number of these than usual are "accidentally" being listed as American Revolution or Civil War relics (probably in the hopes of selling them for exaggerated prices). A very sad thing to see. The person that I won this item from told me that after the auction was over she had been contacted by a person claiming that they had one just like it and that it was in fact an 1850 "Spanish California Dagger" and worth over $500.00. I am not sure why anyone would do something like this after an auction was over but I have been hearing some pretty strainge things lately.

Jose, Carlos and Detlef, Thank you all for your kind words. Ebay does still produce a few good items at reasonable prices now and then. It was by pure chance that I found this dagger as well as the other items that I have won of late. My biggest problem (like everyone else) is having the funds to afford them if and when they are found.

Again I would like to thank everyone who has replied for their interest and kind words.

Robert

Last edited by Robert Coleman : 26th February 2011 at 04:10 PM.
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Old 27th February 2011, 03:37 PM   #15
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Robert, thanks for the note. Please rest assured that on an envy scale, my avid desire to see your fine collection is at least a hundred times more than what you felt Thanks in advance too, for the proposed posting of humpback sundangs
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Old 27th February 2011, 09:17 PM   #16
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Migueldiaz, here are a few poor pictures (it has been raining here for the last three days) of some that have the humpback feature that you show in your above pictures. I tried taking these with and without a flash but the ones without the flash you could not even tell what was in the picture. The blades that look shiny are a lot darker than they look in these pictures, especially the one in the last picture. I hope that they will be of some help to you.

Robert
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Old 27th February 2011, 09:30 PM   #17
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Thanks Robert fot this type of pictures !! Your collection is fantastic and I,m very happy when I see pictures like this!!
Thanks again
carlos
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Old 27th February 2011, 09:50 PM   #18
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I was told by several Filipinos that the bottom 2 are Pampangan.

Just food for thought (or thought for food).
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Old 28th February 2011, 07:33 AM   #19
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Robert, thanks indeed for the pics!

Carlos, same (feeling) here

Battara, I tend to agree. I also saw a pic (here at EAAF? at eBay?) of a similar old tabak with "Pampanga" inscribed on it. I'll post it here when I find it. Thanks.
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Old 2nd March 2011, 08:46 PM   #20
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Well, it has arrived and I am VERY happy with the condition it is in. These pictures are after putting a little mink oil on the scabbard and a very light cleaning and a little ren wax on the punyal itself.
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Last edited by Robert Coleman : 2nd March 2011 at 10:09 PM.
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Old 2nd March 2011, 10:00 PM   #21
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Sweet!
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Old 2nd March 2011, 10:14 PM   #22
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Hello Robert,

very nice addition to your interesting collection!

Regards,

Detlef
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Old 4th March 2011, 07:48 PM   #23
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Its ugly. Doesn't complement your collection well enough...I think you should sell it. I'll gladly get rid of it for you...I'll even pay shipping.
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Old 4th March 2011, 08:09 PM   #24
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The piece is absolutely complete - no restoration needed!
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Old 4th March 2011, 08:27 PM   #25
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Migueldiaz, Detlef and Jose, Thank you all for your kind words and complements on this punyal and my collection. Sometimes I get lucky and find something nice like this but it seems anymore that it is getting harder and harder to find them. As Jose said this one is complete and needs no restoration work at all.

Dimasalang, I know it's pretty ugly but I have already put it on the wall with its brothers, so being lazy I will have to keep it where it is as I haven't the energy to take it back down. Thank you though for your very kind offer to take it off my hands.

Robert
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