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Old 24th July 2015, 02:05 AM   #1
Rafngard
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Default 3 Talibons (or Garabs?)

Hello All,

My first three items from the Vasayans. All from Epray.
I'm not very clear on how a talibon is distinguished from a garab. Perhaps someone could clarify that for me.
None are very exceptional examples, but they were cheap, and I love them, which is the important part


The top one, with perhaps the best carvings is 17.75" long.
The middle, thicker one is 20.255" long
The bottom, thinner on is 21.5" long and as V.N.III carved on it, and I have no idea what that might mean.

I'd be happy to hear any comment's people may have on them.

Thanks,
Leif
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Old 24th July 2015, 02:06 AM   #2
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Just a few more pics
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Old 24th July 2015, 02:08 AM   #3
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Also, I have 5(!) more talibons coming in the mail. Will post pics when they arrive.

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Old 24th July 2015, 02:17 AM   #4
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Caught the bug, have you ?
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Old 24th July 2015, 02:38 AM   #5
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Yeah, just a bit. With the large supply of them, the great variety, and the relatively low price (particularly in comparison to moro and Indonesian items, which I also love), I'm loving the hell out of talibons.

Have fun,
Leif
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Old 24th July 2015, 03:23 AM   #6
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Oh yes, PI weaponry rules!!!!! (my unbiased opinion )

I might place these more from the 1940s.

That bigger one certainly has a unique design, doesn't it?

So far, it would seem different dialects/groups in the Visayas use the different names like tailbon and garab, and perhaps others.........
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Old 24th July 2015, 10:06 AM   #7
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I don't think you can see it in these pics, but the longest one has a face on the hilt. I'll see if I can get a pic of it. It looks a bit like something from a children's cartoon show.

Have fun,
Leif
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Old 25th July 2015, 01:01 AM   #8
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Default Close ups on the face

Here's a couple of pics (from the seller) where I've edited (and in some cases drawn on) them to show the face on the longer blade. It's ridiculously cute.

No idea if this is original. Given the Eagle on the scabbard, I do wonder if this an older blade refitted to sell to GIs
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Old 25th July 2015, 03:15 AM   #9
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Leif:

These are fun knives indeed and they come in many sizes and varieties of hilt. Talibon or talibong is a common name applied to these knives that may be quite small up to sword length, but garab is probably an older term to describe a similar style of knife but that has an angle between the tang and the blade such that the hilt is tilted down. In addition, the garab has a depression just in front of the hilt on the back of the tang/blade which could serve as a thumb rest, and the garab usually has a tripartite butt that resembles the bud of a flower flanked by two leaves. I think the term garab is Eastern Visayan (possibly Warai), while talibon/talibong may be Western Visayan--but don't hold me to that. Attached below are pictures of two traditional garab from the late 19th/early 20th C which shows the features mentioned above.

Of the three knives you show in your post, the shortest one is the most traditional in style (although not showing all the features of the garab in the pictures) and may be a little older than the others. I think all of them come from the Western Visayas (Leyte or Samar) and are probably from the mid-20th C, dating from the end of WWII or a little later. Incidentally, the eagle and plaque shown on the longest one is the Philippine eagle insignia and is commonly found on these knives that date from the end of WWII or later. Knives with this insignia were common bring back items by GIs returning from the Pacific theater in the 1940s.

Ian.
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Old 25th July 2015, 03:29 AM   #10
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A couple more dog headed ones from the same period.

Ian
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Old 25th July 2015, 05:48 PM   #11
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Hello Ian,

Your answer was both complete and succinct. And such a lovely example. Thank you very much!

I think you're right about western Vasayans, and in fact the smaller one has "Vectori: La Pas: Leyte P.I." carved on it. So I think Leyte is a pretty strong possibility for that one. It's visible in one of the pictures, but upside down.

As for the Dog headed ones, those are excellent! I'm happy to know that my big one is not unprecedented.

Thanks,
Leif
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Old 4th March 2016, 06:52 PM   #12
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Default Grab

I have been calling this a Talibon but I guess it is more correctly a garab.
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Old 4th March 2016, 08:02 PM   #13
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nice, especially the last. i've only got three, a sword talibong and 2 shorter garab knives from jun silva. all right hand chisel ground
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Old 5th March 2016, 08:35 PM   #14
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Default Family photos

While I'm still looking for a early 20th/late 19th century Garab, I might have gotten a few more talibongs since I first made this post
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Old 5th March 2016, 09:47 PM   #15
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like that one with the hand on the scabbard & the finger guard.
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