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Old 6th August 2016, 01:53 PM   #61
Jens Nordlunde
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You may have wondered why I wrote, "If the man shown would be 170 cm tall, the weapon would be about 65 cm."
In Sultans of the South. MET, 2008. Klaus Rötzer writes an article Fortifications and Gunpowder in the Deccan, 1368-1687, pp. 204-217. In the article the author gives the avarange size to 1.70 cm.
I dont know from where he has this size, but I guess it is from measuring the fortifications.
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Old 6th August 2016, 06:45 PM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jens Nordlunde
You may have wondered why I wrote, "If the man shown would be 170 cm tall, the weapon would be about 65 cm."
In Sultans of the South. MET, 2008. Klaus Rötzer writes an article Fortifications and Gunpowder in the Deccan, 1368-1687, pp. 204-217. In the article the author gives the avarange size to 1.70 cm.
I dont know from where he has this size, but I guess it is from measuring the fortifications.



Excellent note Jens, and we have had many discussions about the perspectives in measurements in India of the times.
In the note on this article on fortifications and gunpowder in the Deccan. I have reopened a thread on fortifications and guns (in this case Oman) but hope I can expand it to include the most pertinent influences in India as well.
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Old 6th August 2016, 08:09 PM   #63
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Jim,
In the article the author shows some very early 'canons', which may be of interest for you on the other thread. So try to locate the article on the net.
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Old 7th August 2016, 06:33 PM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
Hi Miguel,
It is most heartening as I read on your clearly impassioned approaches toward properly understanding the extremely complex field of the arms and armour of India and Central Asia. Again, I do deeply apologize for not better directing my comments to Jens, which I had not realized would become such a faux pas.
As I explained, I have had the opportunity to work alongside him in many cases in the study of these very weapons over many years.

What I should have emphasized is how delighted myself, and I am sure Jens and others who have most seriously studied these weapons, are to have others join in this quest. Having new eyes and new ideas as well as more perspective in recalling what have become well travelled roads of years ago is outstanding.

The image Jens posted in his last post for example, brought to mind the term 'maustika'. While I recall the frieze, and the term, I could not immediately recall more on the word nor the image, but of course remember where it was from.

Searching the term 'maustika' on Google, it was amazing to see a discussion on this very subject between Jens, myself and B.I. who is a brilliant scholar on these weapons who used to write here. It was from these pages Apr 28, 2006, and we had all been years into the search already.

Apparantly I had found reference to this 'maustika' listed as a 'fist sword/dagger' in Richard Burton ("Book of the Sword" 1885, p214-215). Burton had in turn referenced this from Professor Gustav Oppert ("Weapons of the Ancient Hindus", 1880). Again, in turn, Oppert cited his reference from the 'Nitiprakashika' Book III.

This entry was resultant of a the study Jens had been doing on the origins of the katar, in particular of a small triangular blade with a transverse bar for a grip, as if the entire weapon was cast in one piece. This was from a line drawing and the actual weapon if I recall was from the Moser Collection (Bern, and the image from Holstein, 1931).
Returning to the frieze Jens just posted, I believe (again if memory serves) this represented the Goddess Mahisasuramardini, Durga, slaying the buffalo demon (Orissa temple frieze?, 13th c.).
This clear example of a transversely held dagger seems compellingly to be a katar, and the weapon from Holstein, an even earlier and simpler 'proto katar' (?).
In that particular discussion from 2006, the shield with blade or spike was also mentioned as I noted earlier here.

I wanted to share these notes from those earlier studies and discussions only to present them as perhaps benchmarks or ideas to further pursue various avenues toward the more conclusive resolutions we all clearly hope to achieve.

Best regards
Jim


Hi Jim, thanks for your most interesting reply, I have a lot to learn.
Regards
Miguel
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Old 7th August 2016, 06:41 PM   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ibrahiim al Balooshi
Salaams Miguel, As an observer in this debate I seem to note that no one can say where this weapon started life...I see references to Southern India and wonder where it entered the equation...but that it appears to have bounced around changing shape and developing like so many Indian weapons but leaving only traces of historical detective clues... The weapon appears in Sri Lanka see below and to my knowledge in what looks like its basic form in Martial Arts records from the same region. It occurred to me that it probably originated in Southern India because that is so close to Sri Lanka to where it may well have migrated early on.

Note that BM 179 below is a British Museum reference from https://books.google.com.om/books?i...nograms&f=false

The Martial Art reference is here on Library at


Hello Ibrahiim, thanks for your reply. I think that your conclusion that it originated in Southern India is most likely correct and interestingly arrived at.
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Old 7th August 2016, 06:49 PM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Miguel
Hi Jim, thanks for your most interesting reply, I have a lot to learn.
Regards
Miguel



We all do Miguel!!! Ive been at this most of my life (a more considerable span than I care to remember ) and am still trying to learn. Its a lot more fun when you are doing it with others, which is why we're here.
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Old 8th August 2016, 11:17 AM   #67
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In the context of the discussion I recommend those who are really interested to understand the issue, examine the article: On the Use of Indian Terms for Identification of Weapon Types

http://historical-weapons.com/the-u...an-weapons-abs/

It is on the website in full version.
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Old 8th August 2016, 01:05 PM   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mahratt
In the context of the discussion I recommend those who are really interested to understand the issue, examine the article: On the Use of Indian Terms for Identification of Weapon Types

http://historical-weapons.com/the-u...an-weapons-abs/

It is on the website in full version.


From the article...HERE IS THE ABSTRACT;

Abstract: This article examines the emergence in weapons complex of the Mughals one of the most emblematic Indian weapon – Jamdhar dagger and offers new, different from the preceding, interpretation of its use. The appearance of the original Indian phenomenon in the culture of the conquerors is based on written sources, as well as in the context of understanding the atmospheric interactions of the cultures of conquerors and the vanquished. In analysis the author relies on the translation of the original teхts and illustrative sources. The article explains that one of the main assignments of the dagger “jamdhar” was its use in the hunting of large predators, primarily, in self-defense from a wounded beast. As an elite attribute that emphasizes the owner’s status as a hunter of tigers and lions, the struggle with the beast, theriomachia, was anciently part of the Royal rituals, a kind of test of the applicant for authority and, at the same time, the procedure of confirming the right to exercise this power, the jamdhar dagger took the place of the status thing of the Indian aristocracy. By the time of the third Emperor of the Mughal Empire Akbar some elements of Indian culture were accepted by the conquerors, though, as a rule, a culture of the defeated a priori has a lower status and as a rule remains unexploited by the new elites. And only in case some prestigious forms of the local culture do not face with competitors in the culture introduced by the conquerors, they will have a chance of being accepted by the elite. In case of the jamdhar dagger, this form of the local culture became hunting for tigers and lions, which before the conquest of India was not a Mongol or Turkic tradition. Author also proves that in the decorative elements of decoration of jamdhar daggers in the depiction of predator attacks on prey, these scenes differ in their composition from the well-known “scenes of anguish” in Scythian and Iranian traditions. In Indian tradition there was an allusion that a warrior who had defeated a tiger, became tiger-like himself, and his enemies were similar to victim and prey. The scenes of such kind were analogues to battle scenes, which explain the lack of battle scenes in the ornament of jamdhar daggers. The tight connection to prestigious hunting was one of the reasons jamdhar dagger was established in the role of power insignia and was ensured an honorable place in the Mughal`s weapons complex.
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Old 8th August 2016, 01:19 PM   #69
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Old 8th August 2016, 01:28 PM   #70
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The author posits that Katars entered the North Indian panoply of weapons primarily as a tiger-hunting weapon.
That surely explains the abundance of North Indian katars and the scarcity of North Indian tigers :-)
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Old 8th August 2016, 01:35 PM   #71
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Interestingly, some people like - have a finger in every pie

Some read the article, but do not understand the meaning of the article.

It seemed to me that here in the forum all are able to read independently and can form an opinion about other people's articles (without distorted presentation)
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Old 8th August 2016, 02:07 PM   #72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mahratt
Interestingly, some people like - have a finger in every pie

Some read the article, but do not understand the meaning of the article.

It seemed to me that here in the forum all are able to read independently and can form an opinion about other people's articles (without distorted presentation)


Most interesting perspective, but while the syntax of your comments are remarkably clear, I am markedly unclear on what you mean. You are saying that Mr. Kurcochkin's abstract is distorted?
Thank you for the generous observation on the acumen of those of us here in the forums in reading and forming personal opinions on articles written. It seems that being judged when expressing those opinions here becomes a bit of a problem.

Ariel, pretty good analogy on the case of katar vs. tiger!
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Old 8th August 2016, 02:36 PM   #73
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
Most interesting perspective, but while the syntax of your comments are remarkably clear, I am markedly unclear on what you mean. You are saying that Mr. Kurcochkin's abstract is distorted?
Thank you for the generous observation on the acumen of those of us here in the forums in reading and forming personal opinions on articles written. It seems that being judged when expressing those opinions here becomes a bit of a problem.

Ariel, pretty good analogy on the case of katar vs. tiger!


Jim, I want to say that it is possible overdo any words to absurdity.
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Old 16th April 2017, 03:46 PM   #74
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Miguel, did you ever take your research of the curved south Indian swords any further? If you did, please let us know.
The kora like sword used in earlier times in the south, may not have travelled to Nepal, but may have gone out of fashion, or others on the route likely would have seen its great potential as a fighting sword.
The article about the Coorg swords, will be published in September in The Royal Armoury's journal - I think.
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Old 17th April 2017, 03:52 PM   #75
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Jim,
Who is the author of the article on Coorg weapons?
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Old 15th September 2017, 05:05 PM   #76
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
Ariel, pretty good analogy on the case of katar vs. tiger!


Pretty good will be to learn something new or rather something old. For example that still now somewhere in India the jamdhar dagger it is still called as "tiger dagger" or "tiger knife". Or in sanskrit the word "katari" means exactly "hunting dagger". As well as the word "jamdhar" was never the "teeth of Yama" except in the imagination of the British colonizers. "Jamdhar" meant in ancient India just "double edge weapons". So "jamdhar katari" it is not some kind of any the Hindu Kush dagger.
Too much garbage from books with numerous color images
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Old 16th September 2017, 04:02 AM   #77
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You are largely correct: far too many books ( and supposedly academic articles as well) lazily repeat statements of earlier authors. Sometimes it is almost funny: Pant, a native Indian arms historian, relied heavily on Rawson, an accidental author of a book on Indian swords. Errors of the past have a tendency to perpetuate and eventually become dogmas or a grudging acquiescence to the commonality of usage. Elgood in his Jaipur book informed us that what is traditionally called "Bhuj" is in reality a "Mujawli". The name "Bhuj" was invented by the British who just used the name of a town where they could buy these axes/knives and stayed in one book after another since. It, just like the Karud, will likely stay in our lexicon simply because far too many of us are used to it.

Elgood is currently working on a humongous glossary of terminology of Eastern weapons. I am waiting for it with great anticipation: he is the ultimate obsessive-compulsive person in the best sense of the word and is well-known for his deep digging into primary sources. I am sure our trips to the bookshelves in search of a dog-eared copy of Stone will dramatically decrease after that. Well, strike it out: not "sure", but "hope".

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Old 16th September 2017, 01:41 PM   #78
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Hello Stan,

I can see one possible explanation.
The Katar was a pretty expensive weapon with a very well reputation. Not everybody could afford a Katar.
So the Jamdhar could be an attempt to catch a little bit of the aura of a Katar for a much lower price. A weapon for lower ranks.

Just a guess!


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Old 16th September 2017, 03:00 PM   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
You are largely correct: far too many books ( and supposedly academic articles as well) lazily repeat statements of earlier authors. Sometimes it is almost funny: Pant, a native Indian arms historian, relied heavily on Rawson, an accidental author of a book on Indian swords. Errors of the past have a tendency to perpetuate and eventually become dogmas or a grudging acquiescence to the commonality of usage. Elgood in his Jaipur book informed us that what is traditionally called "Bhuj" is in reality a "Mujawli". The name "Bhuj" was invented by the British who just used the name of a town where they could buy these axes/knives and stayed in one book after another since. It, just like the Karud, will likely stay in our lexicon simply because far too many of us are used to it.

I completely agree. But as to the word "bhuj" I have a slightly different consideration but in general you are right.

Quote:
Elgood is currently working on a humongous glossary of terminology of Eastern weapons. I am waiting for it with great anticipation: he is the ultimate obsessive-compulsive person in the best sense of the word and is well-known for his deep digging into primary sources. I am sure our trips to the bookshelves in search of a dog-eared copy of Stone will dramatically decrease after that. Well, strike it out: not "sure", but "hope".

Great news! It is high time to update the terminology that has not changed for a hundred years. Let's hope that he will be able to attract competent specialists for the Indian part.
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Old 19th February 2019, 11:19 AM   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
The author posits that Katars entered the North Indian panoply of weapons primarily as a tiger-hunting weapon.
That surely explains the abundance of North Indian katars and the scarcity of North Indian tigers :-)


........

Quote:
Since the 1840 katars have been created for sale to tourists. R.Elgood. Rajputs Arms&Armour

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Old 19th February 2019, 11:31 AM   #81
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Old 19th February 2019, 11:35 AM   #82
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Old 19th February 2019, 04:52 PM   #83
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AT LAST!!!! Irrefutable proof that katars WERE used to hunt tigers!



I am unclear on the highlighted quote from Robert Elgood's outstanding book "Rajput Arms and Armour", is this meant to suggest that no katars were made for 'souvenier' markets during the Raj and easily into modern times?
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Old 19th February 2019, 05:19 PM   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McDougall
AT LAST!!!! Irrefutable proof that katars WERE used to hunt tigers!



I am unclear on the highlighted quote from Robert Elgood's outstanding book "Rajput Arms and Armour", is this meant to suggest that no katars were made for 'souvenier' markets during the Raj and easily into modern times?


Thank you. The quote explains why we have a lot of katars now (and so few tigers) and why there are so many small sizes among them. All of this becouse later katars were used as articles of clothing for Indian and souveniers for Evropean unlike real battle or hunting katars.
By the way how many do you know katars decorated with the battle scene or on the contrary with the hunting scene? I cheked this - 1:10.
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Old 19th February 2019, 06:25 PM   #85
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mercenary
Thank you. The quote explains why we have a lot of katars now (and so few tigers) and why there are so many small sizes among them. All of this becouse later katars were used as articles of clothing for Indian and souveniers for Evropean unlike real battle or hunting katars.
By the way how many do you know katars decorated with the battle scene or on the contrary with the hunting scene? I cheked this - 1:10.




This is all astounding! and I had no idea just how deadly the katar was, in a conconcurrent thread we have a katar wielding guy mounting a berserk (musth driven) elephant and killing it by piercing his temple with a katar!

So the idea that a man with one of these deadly daggers could dispatch a 400 pound vicious killing machine tiger is perhaps feasible in such light. However, in my thinking if the tiger is close enough to stab, his teeth are likely firmly emplaced in some part of the guys body, not to mention the weight overpowering him. It is hard to imagine the presence of mind to thrust in such a situation, especially to a 'kill' rather than wounding spot.

Still, how can we dispute such compelling evidence? as well as the fact that the northern Indian tiger was driven into extinction by tiger hunts by katar wielding royal and court figures. If I understand correctly only these people were permitted the priviledge of hunting....the average guy was only 'hunted' by the tigers, and not having katars of course, were just fair game.


I have indeed seen 'shikargar' (=hunting scenes) on katars in some limited degree, so certainly again this must be proof of their use accordingly. We already know that shamshirs and tulwars were for hunting as such motif is seen on them as well. ....at least in following with that theory.
I dont think I have ever seen a katar with a battle scene though..........does this mean they were not used in battle?


Most interesting perspective.
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Old 19th February 2019, 09:12 PM   #86
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You are right. I was incorrect. If we speak about tulwar and tulwar-shikargar we must comparing simple katars and katars decorated with the hunting scene. But I know a lot of paintings where katars were used during the hunt and only two where they were used in the battle. Of course the number of hunts was much more than the number of battles.
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Old 19th February 2019, 09:22 PM   #87
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Hello Jim,

Quote:
So the idea that a man with one of these deadly daggers could dispatch a 400 pound vicious killing machine tiger is perhaps feasible in such light. However, in my thinking if the tiger is close enough to stab, his teeth are likely firmly emplaced in some part of the guys body, not to mention the weight overpowering him. It is hard to imagine the presence of mind to thrust in such a situation, especially to a 'kill' rather than wounding spot.

Looking at those paintings, I get the impression that a majority of the depicted hunters were not entirely happy: even if they managed to fatally wound the tiger or lion (some already wounded during hunting them down), most are shown getting severely scathed and some probably killed. (I rather doubt these paintings were meant as photographic evidence and there may be an element of exaggeration and even display of so-called heroism expected from the artists...

It certainly needs a lot of courage to face any dangerous and cornered animal with close-distance weapons only. However, let's not forget that arguably the only animal that deserves to be tagged as killer is us humans - killing for fun or display of "bravery" is something that is exceedingly rare for any other species...

BTW, despite ample hunting from Indian and English nobility, the tiger was not extinct in northern India during the 19th century.

Regards,
Kai
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Old 19th February 2019, 09:53 PM   #88
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kai
Hello Jim,


Looking at those paintings, I get the impression that a majority of the depicted hunters were not entirely happy: even if they managed to fatally wound the tiger or lion (some already wounded during hunting them down), most are shown getting severely scathed and some probably killed. (I rather doubt these paintings were meant as photographic evidence and there may be an element of exaggeration and even display of so-called heroism expected from the artists...

It certainly needs a lot of courage to face any dangerous and cornered animal with close-distance weapons only. However, let's not forget that arguably the only animal that deserves to be tagged as killer is us humans - killing for fun or display of "bravery" is something that is exceedingly rare for any other species...

BTW, despite ample hunting from Indian and English nobility, the tiger was not extinct in northern India during the 19th century.

Regards,
Kai




Thank you Kai, and I could not agree more with your observations! Of course my note on the use of paintings and other art work as evidence was meant rather tongue in cheek. Art depicting these kinds of themes is invariably based on accounts from persons long after the events and as always, surely embellished as most stories in the telling. I have researched many art works of famous events and the accuracy is ranging from altered to severely compromised, sometimes outlandish.


As you well note, these pictures are clearly well slanted toward the prowess of the 'hunter' and do not portray the probable true character of such an event. I very much like, and agree with your comment ...that only humans kill for sport or to show 'bravery', but in my view such acts of hunting with such an obviously inadequate weapon alone is simply foolhardy. While I can understand that in some cultures these things are viewed differently, I must rely on my own perspective in how I see it personally.


The note on 'extinction' of the North Indian tiger was simply an extension of the quip by Ariel in 2016 about same. Obviously the diminished state of the species was more to natural circumstances, but not during the 19th c.



Mercenary, well noted, the use of the katar, or at least presence of them, was far more common on hunts than in battle. Again, this may have been due to the fact that the Royals and entourage were the ones hunting, and these were favored accoutrements in this group. I can see the katar used as weapon used in a coup de grace type manner, perhaps thus bringing the accounts of 'killing a tiger with a katar'. True, this was the final closure, but after the tiger was down.


Close quarters weapons were not intended as attack weapons for initial impact, but as secondary arms used in close quarters melee or if otherwise compromised as far as I have understood.
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Old 20th February 2019, 09:20 AM   #89
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In 1883 Surgeon-Major Th. H. Hendleyi wrote that it is; “adapted for thrusting, and makes a wide and dangerous wound, which is enlarged in the act of withdrawing the weapon, as both edges are very sharp. Some katars are made to open like scissors blades, others have small pistols attached to the side guards, and in a third variety the open sides reveal a small point within. All these arrangements are devised to make the wound more horrible, and as, in hand to hand conflicts with

tigers and other large savage animals, it is essential to produce a considerable effect at once on the beast, this quality of the katar, which is often used in such sports, is very advantageous.”
i Memorials of the Jaypore Exhibition. P 9. Surgeon-Major Th. H. Hendley, who did service in India for many years, wrote a number of books about Indian weapons and artefacts.


Quote from How Old is the Katar?

To me, the quote above means that the katar was used both for hunting and in battle.
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Old 20th February 2019, 09:56 AM   #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kai
... However, let's not forget that arguably the only animal that deserves to be tagged as killer is us humans - killing for fun or display of "bravery" is something that is exceedingly rare for any other species...

Well, we may not forget it but, it makes no harm to remind it now and then.
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