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Old 13th June 2014, 04:14 AM   #1
trenchwarfare
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Default Kampi-Kaska-Kouba

Just got these two in, off Gunbroker. I'm stumped. The photos are from the auction, I will take some better ones, when able. Both blades are 35 1/2" long, 1 5/8" wide. Double fullered, and spear pointed. 10" sharpened false edge. The left hilt is horn, while the right is wood. The wood hilted one, has a star, sun, moon, and star, that cover about 8" of the ricasso. Both sides. Very similar to the Munich Peter markings, posted by Ibrahim. They remind me of a Kampilan, Kaskara, and a Tokouba. Story is, they were brought back from Afghanistan, many years ago. What iz they?
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Old 13th June 2014, 09:59 AM   #2
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Very early & rare Tuareg Takouba!

From the days of the Ikelan, before the French decimated them.

Excellent catch!

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Old 13th June 2014, 02:48 PM   #3
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Thanks Spiral. The hilts are very non-typical. Is that an earlier style, or are they replacements? As yet, I've found no other examples, in my reference material, or the internet.
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Old 13th June 2014, 03:18 PM   #4
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My understanding is that there the early hilts.

Hence further evidence of the originality when combined with European blades as well!

But in truth not my field..... So couldn't rule out a particular locality or maker for instance.

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Old 13th June 2014, 03:30 PM   #5
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Pictures, after cleaning, and oiling.
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Old 13th June 2014, 04:21 PM   #6
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Both are Berber, usually IDed as from Tunisia. NOT Tuareg Im afraid. Still very nice pieces of a fairly rare type with good blades.
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Old 13th June 2014, 04:30 PM   #7
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Damn!

Sorry...TW. Still good though!

I have to bow to your knowledge of your subject Iain..

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Old 13th June 2014, 06:48 PM   #8
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Thanks Iain. Searching is so much easier, when you know what you're searching for. Any idea as to age? No problem, Spiral. We all know more than we do, sometimes. It's part of the learning process. I try to learn something new, everyday.
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Old 13th June 2014, 06:48 PM   #9
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Thanks Iain. Searching is so much easier, when you know what you're searching for. Any idea as to age? No problem, Spiral. We all know more than we do, sometimes. It's part of the learning process. I try to learn something new, everyday.
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Old 14th June 2014, 08:42 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trenchwarfare
No problem, Spiral. We all know more than we do, sometimes. It's part of the learning process. I try to learn something new, everyday.


Thanks TW, me to!

Looked through a few books this morning, trying to see where Id seen these identified as Taureg.. turns out it was from Anthony c. Tirris "" Islamic weapons" Mahgreb to Moghul""

Sadly that's just one of many mistakes in that book.

Nice coffee table style book though!

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Old 14th June 2014, 10:39 AM   #11
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Hi Guys,

These are a confusing one for sure. They have the look of a takouba hilt in many ways. Probably there's a shared heritage way back in the mists of time. But these with the horn hilts seem to be a more 'rough and ready' type of thing.

The blades seem to be quite often to be from European backswords.

On the age, I'm afraid I really don't know! But I would guess 19th century for sure.

Some older ones have metal work on the hilts as well. See this old thread: http://vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=7429

I'd love to own one like that!

There was a bit of discussion here as well: http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=13911

I see them pop up every now and again but they are certainly far from common.

I haven't read the Tirri book, but from everything I've heard the text would probably just make me annoyed.
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Old 14th June 2014, 08:59 PM   #12
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Ahhh I an not the first to fall for Tirris work on this subject then...

interesting Threads Iain, thanks, certainly learnt something today..

Think there spectacular pieces myself... the old trade blades married with old native work... lovely... A truly matching pair as well..

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Old 14th June 2014, 09:25 PM   #13
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These were a complete mystery to me before as well. I think Martin deserves the credit here for making a regional ID. Once he mentioned the Tunisia connection things started to make a bit more sense. I think there were a couple old French post cards floating around showing these as well. I'll have to try and dig them out.
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Old 16th June 2014, 09:46 PM   #14
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Iain is of course spot on with the Tunisian classification, and few know these North African swords as he does. Actually Spiral, yours was a most reasonable observation, and frankly these weren't accurately identified until a number of years back (indeed Iain I believe it was Martin). They would show up occasionally as complete anomalies until I believe enough showed up in Tunisian areas to classify.

From what I believe has been determined, Tunisia was one key point for entry of European blades in the 19th century, and it would be reasonable to expect that many would remain in those regions while the larger volume entered the southward trade routes. It seems some of these have turned up with 'backsword' (single edge) blades (as seen here) and as the Saharan markets preferred broadsword blades, it would explain why these might have stayed in the Tunisian entrepots.

The Tirri book does indeed have a number of such errors, but in the time he was preparing it there were a number of controversies with a number of forms. I always considered the book useful in good degree for a collectors guide, more of a handbook, as it is full of well photographed examples of the often more pedestrian degree weapons usually encountered by collectors.
Personally I would prefer that he would have added references or cites, and some of the errors can be pretty misleading.

These blades both appear to be Solingen cavalry pallasche blades of latter 18th to early 19th c..
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Old 20th June 2014, 11:13 AM   #15
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I think there's still a lot to learn about this type and we are only scratching the surface. The one example I linked to seems to be much older but I have a lot of questions still.

Are these always horn? Some seem to have metal decorative elements on top. Some seem to have fairly early blades, which Berber group are these from?

Many things yet to try and hunt down I think.
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Old 20th June 2014, 01:28 PM   #16
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They are fascinating!

The more orange colour hilt looks more like timber than horn to me?

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Old 20th June 2014, 01:51 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spiral
They are fascinating!

The more orange colour hilt looks more like timber than horn to me?

Spiral


That is correct. I thought it interesting, that the seller referred to these as "Working Man's Swords". How true. No frills, and just the thing, for a man on a budget.
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