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Old 4th February 2010, 08:59 PM   #1
chregu
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Default what a keris?

Hello together
have long been the keris, but unfortunately just do not know where it comes from or what tribe he had worn.
how old is he?
thank you for all the information

blade length: 35cm
handle length: 13cm
smells like rosewood?
gruss chregu
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Old 4th February 2010, 09:07 PM   #2
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Sorry, but this is not an Indonesian keris, it is from the Philippines in the style kris of the Moro. This doesn't appear to be an old one, probably late 20th century. This forum is for Indo keris only so i am moving this to the main forum.
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Old 4th February 2010, 11:45 PM   #3
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I agree that this seems to be a recent kris. The handle is wrong for this and recently made and the scabbard is also recently made looking to be possibly Maguindanao. Sorry.
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Old 5th February 2010, 03:00 PM   #4
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Interesting & odd little kris. It almost looks like a composite piece with a barung hilt. But even the metal work on the hilt is odd.
The blade doesn't look like a tourist blade & everything shows some wear & a little age (50/60's?).
Could it have been a training kris for a boy? That might make sense using a barung type hilt so the mini sword doesn't slip out of a inexperienced hand.
I've seen some pretty young boys being trained with wooden bolo's in the Visayas, so it wouldn't surprise me somebody had this made for their boy.
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Old 5th February 2010, 05:42 PM   #5
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I know it is not easy
so I am looking for specialists. New touristenkeris no! The blade is good! has wrought tracks! metal deposits are good, brass, copper, German silver.
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Old 5th February 2010, 09:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chregu
I know it is not easy
so I am looking for specialists. New touristenkeris no! The blade is good! has wrought tracks! metal deposits are good, brass, copper, German silver.

I don't anyone is suggesting it is new, just not an old one. It looks post WW2 to me. Could well be the late 50s or 60s. It definitely has some age to it.
Though i won't necessarily call this a tourist kris i must point out that brass, copper and silver materials are often used on them. This blade does seem a bit meatier than your average tourist blade. Most certainly though it has a mismatched hilt. This is not a kris hilt and clearly wasn't made for this blade.
It's size is unusually short for a Moro Kris at about 13 in. Bill thought about a child's blade might hold weight, but i wonder how much serious kris training kids still got in the Philippines of the 50s and 60s. Enough to warrant making a real blade for the workouts?
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Old 5th February 2010, 09:32 PM   #7
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Hello Christoph,

Welcome to the forum!

I agree that this is not one of those crappy blades (which don't deserve the name kris) made for ignorant travellers. However, Moro kris this small (and with fancy fittings/inlay) do seem to be a relatively recent development (WW2 and later) and the (barung) pommel style isn't old, too; IMHO the scabbard also doesn't suggest an origin much earlier than WW2.

Can you ascertain wether the unusual brass grip was made by the lost wax method?

BTW, are you sure that's not real silver utilized for parts of the inlay?

Regards,
Kai
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Old 5th February 2010, 09:44 PM   #8
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Hello David and Bill,

Quote:
Bill thought about a child's blade might hold weight, but i wonder how much serious kris training kids still got in the Philippines of the 50s and 60s. Enough to warrant making a real blade for the workouts?

The kris was still utilized as a weapon by Moro fighters for several decades later; there surely were lots of families with serious blade training throughout the 20th century (despite guns being more sought after for practical and status reasons).

However, with all the inlay and fancy fittings this is not a practise blade! There are also no antique kris of similar size known which could be considered genuine practise blades for kids...

Regards,
Kai
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Old 5th February 2010, 11:02 PM   #9
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I would love to see pictures of this piece taken in daylight; I just cannot see well enough from these pictures .
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Old 5th February 2010, 11:48 PM   #10
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IF THE GANJAH IS SEPARATE FROM THE BLADE THE BLADE WAS MADE IN THE PROPER OLD FASHONED WAY WHICH DENOTES HIGHER QUALITY. IF THE INLAY IN THE BLADE IS WELL DONE AND THE BLADE WELL FINISHED THAT ALSO DENOTES GOOD WORKMANSHIP AND QUALITY.
THE HANDLE IS WELL CARVED AND FINISHED LOOK FOR WEAR AND PATINA TO DETERMINE AGE.

THIS KRIS IS NOT TYPICAL DUE TO ITS SMALL SIZE (CLOSER TO A LARGE GUNONG) AND HANDLE WHICH RESEMBLES A BARONG HANDLE MORE THAN A KRIS. IF THE QUALITY IS GOOD BASED ON THE ABOVE CRITERIA IT MAY HAVE BEEN A CUSTOM PIECE EITHER FOR AN INDIVIDUAL OR MADE FOR PRESENTATION OR AS A GIFT. BETTER PICTURES MAY HELP THE EXPERTS ADD SOME INFO BUT THERE IS NO GOOD SUBSTITUTE TO ACTUALLY HAVING IT IN HAND.
JUST MY TWO CENTS WORTH.
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Old 6th February 2010, 02:00 AM   #11
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Chregu, I really like this kris & would love to have someone tell us it's story. I think I'm pretty close putting this in the 1950's-60's. Prior to WW2, the US confiscated fighting swords. Post WW2 there was a resurgence of traditional weapons but noticeable changes with the interruption of the traditional craftsmanship. The Southern Philippines didn't become heavily armed till the early 70's.
I've got a few mini kris with 4-6 inch blades. One has a plate between the blade & hilt just like yours. The ones I have are clearly worn & could only function as stabbing weapons. I feel they're from the 50's-60's.
I also have 3 little barungs. I guess they could be kitchen choppers but they have traditional appearance but little quality. Can't imagine any use for them except as training blades for boys. They also appear to be from the 50-60's.
It appears your kris has a nice blade but I don't think the rest of the dress is up to par for a nice presentation piece but is quite presentable for daily use; except it just doesn't have enough wear to show someone carried this daily, for years.
Interesting blade, hope there is more input on it.
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Old 6th February 2010, 04:48 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill
I also have 3 little barungs. I guess they could be kitchen choppers but they have traditional appearance but little quality. Can't imagine any use for them except as training blades for boys. They also appear to be from the 50-60's.

Bill, why have you counted out that these barong might have been made for tourist trade? Why must they be training blades?
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Old 6th February 2010, 05:18 AM   #13
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I have serious doubts that this is the original hilt for this kris. There are no asang-asang present or a way in which they ever could have been there and it seems doubtful to me that a weapon which is made to be wielded like a kris could simply be attached to the hilt with pitch or some other adhesive and be expected to remain attached in action.
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Old 6th February 2010, 07:09 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David
Bill, why have you counted out that these barong might have been made for tourist trade? Why must they be training blades?

They may very well be just tourist trinkets. If they sell I'm sure someone would make them. Just don't see GI's/tourist buying a blade they can only get 2 or 3 fingers around the hilt.
As far as the stirrups go; a 12" blade isn't going to be a slashing weapon. It may open the skin but it isn't going to hack into the flesh. So if it's a real weapon, this is for stabbing.
I've seen 12" "kris" on ebay in the past. Not often & they are usually very crude. Here is a typical example, referred to at Therion Arms as a gunong dagger: http://therionarms.com/antiques/therionarms_c715.html
Were these used as a real weapon? I don't think so. What tourist is going to buy them? Only thing that makes sense is a training sword for small boys. If I'm right, Chregu has the coolest one I've ever seen.
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Old 6th February 2010, 04:35 PM   #15
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I dunno Bill, perhaps you would be surprised at what tourist would buy. Also this gunong you link too (and it is a gunong because it lacks the asymetric base of the standard keris design) certainly looked a fair sight more attractive for tourists when it was new. Not all "tourist" to the Philippines were GIs, though that was certainly the largest segment of foreigners there around WW2. But the 50's, 60's and 70's brought all kinds of folks to the Philippines for all kinds of reasons. Not everyone who buys a blade is going to be concerned about whether their hand fits the handle if their intention is collection, not actual use.
Chregu's kris doesn't have the pointer profile of a stabbing keris. Look at the earlier "archiac" kris and their thinner, pointier blades. His looks like the larger slashing kris in proportion, just smaller in size, so i don't think this was designed to be a stabbing weapon.
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Old 6th February 2010, 06:02 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David
Chregu's kris doesn't have the pointer profile of a stabbing keris. Look at the earlier "archiac" kris and their thinner, pointier blades. His looks like the larger slashing kris in proportion, just smaller in size, so i don't think this was designed to be a stabbing weapon.


Exactly. & why it's likely a training sword.
If you were to train someone half the size/strength, what would you use?
1/2 the sword. I talked to a soldier who was involved in the conflict in the south before & after the outside influences supplied firearms. There was no mistake he feared/respected the krisman the most. He claimed he never saw anyone survive wounds from a kris attack. To be that effective, there has to be many years of training.
A recent clan conflict just left a staggering amount of dead. They have been going on forever. Not to mention many different militas & bandits.
Training your boy, in that time period wouldn't be for recreation but necessity that be would have the skills to protect himself & family/clan.
As you say Chregu's kris would appear to be ineffective as a stabbing weapon or as slashing weapon. It would be a great little slasher, for little hands against a stuffed, hanging rice sack with instructions on effectively using the cutting edge to its greatest abilities.
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Old 6th February 2010, 06:16 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill
As you say Chregu's kris would appear to be ineffective as a stabbing weapon or as slashing weapon. It would be a great little slasher, for little hands against a stuffed, hanging rice sack with instructions on effectively using the cutting edge to its greatest abilities.

Perhaps, but as pointed out previously, why both with all that inlay work for a practice sword?
And again, i will say that it is unlikely this is the original hilt. Even if "little hands" were doing the slashing this would still require some asang-asang to secure the blade properly. Sorry if i misunderstood you, but i thought you were arguing earlier that this blade was a stabbing weapon, not a slasher because of it's length.
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Old 6th February 2010, 08:02 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David
Perhaps, but as pointed out previously, why both with all that inlay work for a practice sword?
And again, i will say that it is unlikely this is the original hilt. Even if "little hands" were doing the slashing this would still require some asang-asang to secure the blade properly. Sorry if i misunderstood you, but i thought you were arguing earlier that this blade was a stabbing weapon, not a slasher because of it's length.


I'm fairly sure that is a Tausog hilt from the Sulu area. Funny, but the kid that trained on that sword may very well still be around & one of the few that could tell us if it's original to the sword & why. If the sword is Tausog, those are fiercely independent people. While the US decreased involvement post WW2, there was a control vacuum created & the people in the south didn't want it filled by Manila. I can see nobility-class folks wanting to re-establish power & impress others. If indeed this is a training sword, it's a pretty impressive one.
I really don't think the asang-asang would be important for a kids sword, he'd probably knock it out of his hand before he'd loosen the blade. I've got several fighting kris where each stirrup is two pieces. One piece fitted around the blade & then a metal strip, looped & inserted next to the tang & into the hilt. Strictly show, no function.
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Old 7th February 2010, 01:20 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill
Funny, but the kid that trained on that sword may very well still be around & one of the few that could tell us if it's original to the sword & why.

Yes and i suppose that the dealer who married this hilt with this blade so that he could make it look complete and interesting for sale might still be around as well and he could tell us why he thought it was a good idea as well.
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Old 7th February 2010, 01:38 PM   #20
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hello together
First time many thanks for the many information.
your bid to share in the sounds are German silver,not real silver.
the metal parts on the handle are copper silver plated.
Many thanks for your efforts.
here are some daylight pics
gruss chregu
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Old 7th February 2010, 04:53 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David
Yes and i suppose that the dealer who married this hilt with this blade so that he could make it look complete and interesting for sale might still be around as well and he could tell us why he thought it was a good idea as well.


You may be right, but he would have to have a hilt that was made for a smaller hand with a non traditional ferrule on the hilt.
Without asang-asang, a metal ferrule is needed where the tang inserts into the blade to support the hilt from cracking.
This one looks like the ferrule was originally for a more traditional kris hilt & re-used for the barung hilt.
I was looking through my stuff & found a barung with traditional ferrule but very similar style/carving. I bought it from Ramon Villegas, his description is circa 1960 Tausog.
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