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Old 27th August 2016, 07:32 AM   #151
estcrh
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Well, can I call i this one a "pseudoshashka"?:-)
I think this one qualifies.
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Old 27th August 2016, 07:17 PM   #152
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andreas
Hello Kamachate,
Your posts have been very interesting and informative. Searching in Loewe’s Dictionary of the Circassian Language (pub. 1854), I could find the following words for sword/sabre. Do you think you could comment on them?
Thanks,
Andreas


Dear Andreas, I know the dictionary. Although it is a good attempt for its era, it is rather an insufficient source for Circassian language (at least, today). Most words were just "found" during face to face conversations, and as noted in the preface, the common language between the researcher and the Circassians was "Turkish" (during that time, most Circassian translators were using Crimean Tatar dialect, rather than Turkish). The method of the researcher was to imitate or to show an object, then to ask what it is. That's why, there are many words answered or "understood" wrong.
These people were mostly from different tribes of the Circassians, and sometimes, even Abazins (who talk a dialect of Aphazian, not Adyghe language). As a result, there are many misunderstandings (I am not mentioning the misspellings or wrong transcriptions, but I can give credit for this, I can never write the true transcription of the Circassian words .

About the subject, words given for Sword (Sabre) are all variants of seshkho (сэшхо) = shashka
seys-shooâ is directly referring to seshkho, and sesh-wey is the same word in genitive case.
The word written as tzéshwey is most probably s-seshkhoe(y), which means "my shashka"
The first correspondence for "sabre" above this is a little bit more correct, because "seshkhém" means "the shashka".
However, the second word given may explain the tragedy, because the word given as "pee-yoop sho" is not a noun, but a verb that any Circassian can understand: It means "cutting", or, literally, "it cuts"
Best
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Old 27th August 2016, 07:42 PM   #153
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kamachate
Dear Andreas, I know the dictionary. Although it is a good attempt for its era, it is rather an insufficient source for Circassian language (at least, today). Most words were just "found" during face to face conversations, and as noted in the preface, the common language between the researcher and the Circassians was "Turkish" (during that time, most Circassian translators were using Crimean Tatar dialect, rather than Turkish). The method of the researcher was to imitate or to show an object, then to ask what it is. That's why, there are many words answered or "understood" wrong.
These people were mostly from different tribes of the Circassians, and sometimes, even Abazins (who talk a dialect of Aphazian, not Adyghe language). As a result, there are many misunderstandings (I am not mentioning the misspellings or wrong transcriptions, but I can give credit for this, I can never write the true transcription of the Circassian words .

About the subject, words given for Sword (Sabre) are all variants of seshkho (сэшхо) = shashka
seys-shooâ is directly referring to seshkho, and sesh-wey is the same word in genitive case.
The word written as tzéshwey is most probably s-seshkhoe(y), which means "my shashka"
The first correspondence for "sabre" above this is a little bit more correct, because "seshkhém" means "the shashka".
However, the second word given may explain the tragedy, because the word given as "pee-yoop sho" is not a noun, but a verb that any Circassian can understand: It means "cutting", or, literally, "it cuts"
Best

Kamachate, you just explained why westerners decided on a certain name for a weapon even when there were other regional names, they just picked one that they were told and that they could pronounce and stuck with it. Now we scratch our heads trying to discover just why they used a certain name instead of another when there may be no rational explanation.
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Old 27th August 2016, 09:24 PM   #154
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Then, here is a pseudo shashka from me
The hilt is goat's horn. The iron expand of the blade goes until the end of the hilt, nearly have the shape of it. The places of the rivets can give a clue. The "ears" of the hilt are not as usual. The fuller is strange, and one can note the strange curve where the fuller begins. The blade narrows after the fuller, and slightly expands after it, as if there is a kind of "yalman". I have never seen any parallels of this one
Someone told me that this was "one of the earliest examples of shashkas", but I did not buy it (if only it was )
Best.
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Last edited by kamachate : 27th August 2016 at 09:38 PM.
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Old 28th August 2016, 03:40 AM   #155
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I think you were right not buying it. Nothing "early"or "archaic", just rudimentary workmanship of a not very talented cutler , made for a very poor customer.
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Old 28th August 2016, 04:48 AM   #156
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kamachate:

Thank you for the lesson in the Circassian language. Much appreciated and very interesting contribution to this discussion. It just goes to show how complicated and ultimately frustrating the "name game" can be for those of us who are outside the culture.

Ian

Quote:
Originally Posted by kamachate
Dear Andreas, I know the dictionary. Although it is a good attempt for its era, it is rather an insufficient source for Circassian language (at least, today). Most words were just "found" during face to face conversations, and as noted in the preface, the common language between the researcher and the Circassians was "Turkish" (during that time, most Circassian translators were using Crimean Tatar dialect, rather than Turkish). The method of the researcher was to imitate or to show an object, then to ask what it is. That's why, there are many words answered or "understood" wrong.
These people were mostly from different tribes of the Circassians, and sometimes, even Abazins (who talk a dialect of Aphazian, not Adyghe language). As a result, there are many misunderstandings (I am not mentioning the misspellings or wrong transcriptions, but I can give credit for this, I can never write the true transcription of the Circassian words .

About the subject, words given for Sword (Sabre) are all variants of seshkho (сэшхо) = shashka
seys-shooâ is directly referring to seshkho, and sesh-wey is the same word in genitive case.
The word written as tzéshwey is most probably s-seshkhoe(y), which means "my shashka"
The first correspondence for "sabre" above this is a little bit more correct, because "seshkhém" means "the shashka".
However, the second word given may explain the tragedy, because the word given as "pee-yoop sho" is not a noun, but a verb that any Circassian can understand: It means "cutting", or, literally, "it cuts"
Best
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Old 28th August 2016, 08:18 AM   #157
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kamachate
Dear Andreas, I know the dictionary. Although it is a good attempt for its era, it is rather an insufficient source for Circassian language (at least, today). Most words were just "found" during face to face conversations, and as noted in the preface, the common language between the researcher and the Circassians was "Turkish" (during that time, most Circassian translators were using Crimean Tatar dialect, rather than Turkish). The method of the researcher was to imitate or to show an object, then to ask what it is. That's why, there are many words answered or "understood" wrong.
These people were mostly from different tribes of the Circassians, and sometimes, even Abazins (who talk a dialect of Aphazian, not Adyghe language). As a result, there are many misunderstandings (I am not mentioning the misspellings or wrong transcriptions, but I can give credit for this, I can never write the true transcription of the Circassian words .

About the subject, words given for Sword (Sabre) are all variants of seshkho (сэшхо) = shashka
seys-shooâ is directly referring to seshkho, and sesh-wey is the same word in genitive case.
The word written as tzéshwey is most probably s-seshkhoe(y), which means "my shashka"
The first correspondence for "sabre" above this is a little bit more correct, because "seshkhém" means "the shashka".
However, the second word given may explain the tragedy, because the word given as "pee-yoop sho" is not a noun, but a verb that any Circassian can understand: It means "cutting", or, literally, "it cuts"
Best

Thank you very much for your answer.
Regards,
Andreas
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Old 28th August 2016, 01:26 PM   #158
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Kamachate,
Thank you very much for yout lesson.
It is very funny and very sobering.
Unquestionably, that's how it went all over the world when curious Westerners compiled books on exotic arms using private translator-mediated conversations with the locals.

Hundreds of years later their readers passionately clash in pseudo-academic pseudo- linguistic battles : saif or nimcha? Kard or karud? Tulwar, pulwar, pulouar or just shamshir? We were so happy when the "oldest" name for the Khyber knife was found: Selaawa. Now I am wondering what that old toothless Afghani had in mind:-)
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Old 28th August 2016, 02:22 PM   #159
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kamachate
Then, here is a pseudo shashka from me
The hilt is goat's horn. The iron expand of the blade goes until the end of the hilt, nearly have the shape of it. The places of the rivets can give a clue. The "ears" of the hilt are not as usual. The fuller is strange, and one can note the strange curve where the fuller begins. The blade narrows after the fuller, and slightly expands after it, as if there is a kind of "yalman". I have never seen any parallels of this one
Someone told me that this was "one of the earliest examples of shashkas", but I did not buy it (if only it was )
Best.


Very crude and basic, this was probably a very easy sword to make and it did the job, here is another crude example....both Afghan???
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Last edited by estcrh : 28th August 2016 at 02:34 PM.
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Old 29th August 2016, 03:21 AM   #160
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Both Caucasian, IMHO.
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Old 29th August 2016, 05:11 PM   #161
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Quote:
Originally Posted by estcrh
Very crude and basic, this was probably a very easy sword to make and it did the job, here is another crude example....both Afghan???


Compared to the one I shared, yours is a piece of art
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Old 29th August 2016, 05:24 PM   #162
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Both Caucasian, IMHO.

That's also what I think, but these cheap and bad examples are so small in numbers when compared to the majority... This seems interesting to me, for they "should" have been produced more than the rest (or am I wrong? I have seen many European blades, "gurda" marked ones or pieces with wonderful fullers. But these cheap and easy ones are harder to find
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Old 29th August 2016, 06:57 PM   #163
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Both Caucasian, IMHO.
Ok, I am still trying to figure this out, what identifies these as Caucasian and not Afghan??

Last edited by Ian : 30th August 2016 at 02:48 AM.
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Old 30th August 2016, 02:50 AM   #164
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Estrch, I believe that Ariel's comments reflect what he laid out earlier in this thread and were summarized in the table in post #71. Ian

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Ok, I am still trying to figure this out, what identifies these as Caucasian and not Afghan??
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Old 30th August 2016, 04:55 AM   #165
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ian
Estrch, I believe that Ariel's comments reflect what he laid out earlier in this thread and were summarized in the table in post #71. Ian
Thanks Ian, I forgot about the bolster.
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Old 12th October 2017, 11:03 PM   #166
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kronckew
caucasus mountains range thru Turkey, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Russia, and Iran.


Allow me slight correction. Instead of Russia, should be - Russian Federation. Word Russia invites geographical and cultural error. Part of Caucasus presently governed within Russian Federation, culturally belong to Caucasian cultural oikumene (ekumene). Particulary Circassian, Vainakh, Avar, Kumik cultural worlds among others. When discussing ethnographic arms of Caucasus it is imperative to make this kind of distinction. In aspects of warfare and weaponry Russian presence was that of a cultural intruder and surprisingly borrower of local traditions.
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Old 12th October 2017, 11:22 PM   #167
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Quote:
Originally Posted by estcrh
Very good information Ariel, unfortunately when you look online, there are Caucasian / Circassian shashka being described as Cossack, Georgian, Russian etc. Most with a few exceptions as you noted have simply been improperly described


Allow me to point out that though there are plenty of incorrectly attributed Circassian shashkas online, there are distinct type of Georgian shashka (noteworthy it was not called shashka in Georgian ) and other Georgian types of swords, which shared fundamental features of guardless sabers.

Circassian shashka in my opinion is brilliant weapon, a crowning specimen of special type of swords that emerged and underwent development in Caucasus region. There is a definite genealogical line of these kind of weapons. Shahska does not stand totally apart.
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Old 13th October 2017, 05:33 AM   #168
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Vakhtang,
Glad to finally see you here.
This forum definitely needs people of your expertise.
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Old 8th December 2017, 08:37 PM   #169
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiziria
In aspects of warfare and weaponry Russian presence was that of a cultural intruder and surprisingly borrower of local traditions.

As well as Ottomans, all Turks, Central Asia, India, Japan, China, Caucasians - all of them borrowed local and outside traditions. Russians....
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Old 9th December 2017, 02:37 PM   #170
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Let me and myself get involved in the topic.The word shashka is derived from Kabardino Circassian sa`sh ho which means a long knife.For homeland is considered the Caucasus region.The most extensive studies on the subject conducted by Russian researchers.Most earliest reference to such use blades are excavations of graves from the 13th century in the Caucasus region.It is also interesting to note that such a form of long edged weapon are used at all the neighboring regions of the Caucasus (Including Georgia).During the Caucasian wars,the cossacks have find exclusive advantage of light and convenient blade used by local peoples.Begins phasing using the shashka and kinjals in Cossack troops.The command of the Russian Imperial Army began to deploy this type of weapon in the Cossack regiments.Eventually, thanks to the Russians this weapon becomes extremely popular in the world.
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Old 9th December 2017, 07:33 PM   #171
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All true.

Caucasian weapons ( Shashka and kindjal) were initially individually acquired by neighboring Cossacks and later by Russian officers serving in the Caucasus, most actively during the Murid Wars.

Then both started to be manufactured in St. Petersburg and various other cities in Russia and Ukraine, using classical Caucasian forms and decorations.

Then they were modified to become regulation weapons of the Russian imperial army, having very little in common with the Caucasian originals but preserving their original names.

A similar story happened with Caucasian clothes: from occasional individual acquisition to mass fashion statement : even Russian Tsars had their official portraits painted wearing full Caucasian garb, from hats to weapons in minute detail.

I know of no other example where military victors so fully adopted external accoutrements of the vanquished.

Certainly, people all over the world adopted some details of their neighbours’
weaponry ( “ weapons do not know borders” principle), but such a massive transformation has no precedent in the “vanquished-to-victors” direction.

It is as if British high society, royalty included, would have started wearing Indian saris and Zulu loinclothes and the British military officially adopted khandas and katars.

My IMHO theory: this peculiar behavior of the Russians might be due to the absense of their own tradition. They got their weapons from Vikings or Mongols ( and later from acquiring Persian, Turkish, Polish or W. European examples, singularly or en masse), and their own clumsy boyar coats and women’s sarafans were banned by Peter I and substituted for W. European garb. A chance to dress like some unknown to the world Caucasians and wield peculiar Caucasian weapons gave them identity they so much yearned for.
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Old 9th December 2017, 08:51 PM   #172
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[QUOTE=ariel]All true.

I know of no other example where military victors so fully adopted external accoutrements of the vanquished.[QUOTE]

Mughals in India, turks in Iran&Transoxiana, turks in India sultanates in 12-15th

Last edited by Mercenary : 9th December 2017 at 09:07 PM.
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Old 9th December 2017, 09:06 PM   #173
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
My IMHO theory: this peculiar behavior of the Russians might be due to the absense of their own tradition. They got their weapons from Vikings or Mongols ( and later from acquiring Persian, Turkish, Polish or W. European examples, singularly or en masse), and their own clumsy boyar coats and women’s sarafans were banned by Peter I and substituted for W. European garb. A chance to dress like some unknown to the world Caucasians and wield peculiar Caucasian weapons gave them identity they so much yearned for.

Everything is easier. Russia was not colonial empire and did not destroy local cultures - all of them still live. But I agree, russian = eclectic . When you are criticizing Russian you are criticizing 190 different nations. Please, don't do it with so many people :-)
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Old 9th December 2017, 09:28 PM   #174
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I am talking about a dominant culture and governmental lmperial policies. No offense to any particular people was meant.
If you have a better alternative explanation I would love to hear it and may even agree.
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Old 9th December 2017, 09:30 PM   #175
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mercenary
[QUOTE=ariel]

Mughals in India, turks in Iran&Transoxiana, turks in India sultanates in 12-15th


I fail to see any analogy: could you elaborate please?
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Old 10th December 2017, 04:19 AM   #176
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
I am talking about a dominant culture and governmental lmperial policies. No offense to any particular people was meant.
If you have a better alternative explanation I would love to hear it and may even agree.

Mameluke swords in Europe in 19th. Didn't Europeans have their own weapons? The same Russians in Caucasus. Russian army was equiped with modern weapons as any other European army. What is "absense of their own tradition" in 19th (!!!) for army of European style? Where were British, French or Austrian own "native" weapons in 19th?
In the case of shashka or any others Caucasian things that was just a fashion the same as some British adopted tulwars. In the case of French and British it was "a cultural intruder and surprisingly borrower of local traditions" too? I am not sure. For a more developed states to borrow some of the native curious items is normal.

Last edited by Mercenary : 10th December 2017 at 04:30 AM.
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Old 10th December 2017, 04:45 AM   #177
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
[QUOTE=Mercenary]

I fail to see any analogy: could you elaborate please?

Mughal - tulwar, jamdhar, khapwa, elephant, dress, lifestyle of rajas and sultans.
Turks-afghans in India in 12-15th - jamdhar, elephant, dress, lifestyle of rajas.
Turks in Iran - language (!), town lifestyle, ALL PERSIAN CULTURE.

In origin shashka was the Caucasian weapon. But who glorified it? That is way all we know "Russian shashka".
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Old 10th December 2017, 03:32 PM   #178
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I am choosing not to participate in a discussion that will be viewed by some as personal confrontation.

There are many other people on this Forum with enough knowledge to address factual errors and inconsistencies.

I elect to pass on this occasion.

Best wishes.
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Old 10th December 2017, 07:20 PM   #179
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
I am choosing not to participate in a discussion that will be viewed by some as personal confrontation.

There are many other people on this Forum with enough knowledge to address factual errors and inconsistencies.

I elect to pass on this occasion.

Best wishes.

There was not any confrontation. But in any way thank you very much for discussion.
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Old 11th December 2017, 05:06 AM   #180
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Many answers to your arguments can be found in the recent Elgood's book about Jodhpur weapons.
I got it almost 2 weeks ago, and am reading it slowly and attentively. It is a monumental contribution with exhaustive analysis of historical sources and impeccable argumentation. Good half of the first volume consists of academic chapters of the highest caliber and the analysis of individual objects is largely unexpected . I learned a lot. Get it and read slowly and carefully. This is not your standard regurgitation of Egerton, Stone or Rawson. Every page opens new and original vistas. One needs to digest virtually every sentence. You too will learn more about Indian history and militaria than you could even imagine.

Enjoy!
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