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Old 18th August 2017, 12:28 PM   #1
Bejo
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Default Determine Front Side of The Pendok

Hello,

I just got this pendok. My estimation for this Pendok is from West Java. Picture A has more smooth texture, while picture B has more stand out texture. My question are which picture is the front side? Also, any suggestion which region this pendok is came from? (Like Cirebon, Banten, or another region)

Thank you,


Best regards,

Joe
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Old 18th August 2017, 01:43 PM   #2
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IMO from Cirebon
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Old 18th August 2017, 03:27 PM   #3
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My thought is that "B" is the front side of your pendok.
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Old 18th August 2017, 07:57 PM   #4
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My vote is:
B-front
A-back

But I am a novice collector and my opinion is more based on gut feeling than on solid knowledge.
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Old 18th August 2017, 08:21 PM   #5
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I also vote for B as the front side. I am quite impressed by this pendok, both the quality of the embossing work and the full decoration on the back side. Regarding the area of origin I also guess Northern Java as Marco in absence of a better alternative.
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Old 18th August 2017, 09:14 PM   #6
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Another vote for B as front side! Very nice and beautiful pendok! And like Marco and Jean I vote for North coast Java but this is just my "feeling".

Regards,
Detlef

Last edited by Sajen : 19th August 2017 at 01:15 AM.
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Old 19th August 2017, 01:02 AM   #7
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I get the floral side quite possibly being the front of this pendok.

What I'm interested in is the symbolism of the straight, almost pillar like embossing on what you guys think is the back.

Anyone have any thoughts about this feature?
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Old 19th August 2017, 01:20 AM   #8
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After a second look I think that A could be the front side. And I am sure that I have seen this what Rick decribe as pillar motive before, I need to check my collection for this.
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Old 19th August 2017, 01:49 AM   #9
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Have found it in a box where I keep a lot of different pendoks as spare parts. Not direct the same style but this pillars are present here as well. I ever have thought that my pendok is a Banyumas pendok but I could be wrong.

Regards,
Detlef
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Old 19th August 2017, 02:39 AM   #10
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The motif on Bejo's pendok and the motif on Detlef's pendok are not the same, nor similar, but are philosophically related.

Detlef's pendok has a motif that symbolises emerging life. At the top there is a butterfly, or moth, if we track this butterfly down to the beginning of the motif at the tip of the pendok, we will see that the butterfly has experienced a journey from chrysalis to grown beast with spread wings. This is a statement of the way in which life grows, something of particular importance to an agrarian based society.

Bejo's motif is different. This one I do not know for certain, but a very highly regarded silver & gold smith who specialised in keris fittings and who lived in Solo once told me that in his opinion this angular upright was a stylization of the Kalpataru, the Tree of Life.

I am inclined to accept this as an accurate opinion, because if we look at the literature on Indonesian art motifs we frequently see the Kalpataru represented in a very sparse, angular fashion.

Detlef, I consider your pendok to be Banyumas. If we are both wrong, then a very great number of Javanese keris literate people will also be wrong.

Bejo's pendok I'm a bit hesitant about, my inclination is to think of it as quite recent, say within the last 50 years, and made in the style of Banyumas, but in Jogja.

Bejo, a question:- is your pendok silver, and if so, what is its weight?
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Old 19th August 2017, 02:47 AM   #11
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Hi guys,

I don't know if it is normal for a North Coast Javanese pendok to have 2 design on each side with more or less similar level of workmanship. On Malay pendok usually the one on the back is less refined than the front.

Is side B motif Javanese? Probably one motif was made earlier than the other? Regarding the side with "pillar" design, if I am not mistaken, according to Alan, it is symbolic of renewal of life.

Here's a quote from Alan's previous catalogue, describing this motif "it shows the pupa of a dragonfly, progressing to its adult form. In Javanese symbolism, the dragonfly can be understood as a symbol related to the warrior, so the symbolism of this pendok is in fact closely related to extinction of, and renewal of life, a theme that is frequently found in Javanese art and thought."

If we look closely, there's a motif that starts from the bottom of the pendok "making it's" way to the top of the pendok and it's size and refinement grows as it reaches the top. I provide an example of this motif below.
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Last edited by rasdan : 19th August 2017 at 10:59 AM.
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Old 19th August 2017, 02:49 AM   #12
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I think my post above was posted at the same time as Alan and Detlief. Sorry if there is any confusion.
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Old 19th August 2017, 03:25 AM   #13
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Thanks for that Rasdan.

The dragonfly is probably better, because of the warrior connotation, but I have seen this motif interpreted as butterfly/moth also.
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Old 19th August 2017, 09:19 AM   #14
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Thank you for all the opinions. That really help me


Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey

Bejo, a question:- is your pendok silver, and if so, what is its weight?


Yes, the pendok is made from silver. Its weight 41 gram, 33.5 cm long.

Thank you,



Best regards,

Joe
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Old 19th August 2017, 09:52 AM   #15
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Hello Alan,

and what you think is the front side from Bejos pendok?

Regards,
Detlef
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Old 19th August 2017, 10:00 AM   #16
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I received from a friend a picture from another pendok in the same style.
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Old 19th August 2017, 10:58 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
Thanks for that Rasdan.

The dragonfly is probably better, because of the warrior connotation, but I have seen this motif interpreted as butterfly/moth also.


No worries, Alan. Thanks for the other interpretations (moth/butterfly) as well. I have zero knowledge in this area and I think this area is rather neglected in keris research.
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Old 19th August 2017, 12:54 PM   #18
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I have no idea at all which side is supposed to be the front. When in doubt I fit the pendok to a suitable wrongko and see which way it sits correctly.

Bejo, I feel that your pendok is very probably old, 41gm is too light for a recent pendok, old silver pendoks were usually lighter than more recent ones.
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Old 19th August 2017, 12:59 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
Detlef, I consider your pendok to be Banyumas. If we are both wrong, then a very great number of Javanese keris literate people will also be wrong.



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Old 19th August 2017, 01:51 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
I have no idea at all which side is supposed to be the front. When in doubt I fit the pendok to a suitable wrongko and see which way it sits correctly.


From the pics, Bejo's pendok looks very symmetrical at least on top side so fitting it to a wrongko may not help much.
The 3 reasons wich make me feel that B is the front side are as follows:
. To my eyes the embossed motif is more finely made on side B
. The main motif is framed on side B unlike on side A
. From the pics there seems to be more dark patina & wear near the bottom tip on side A
My personal opinion only...
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Old 19th August 2017, 03:39 PM   #21
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Wow. So many nice other pendoks were also posted
Thanks.

In my opinion, side B maybe is the front side. Because the top part of the pendok is quite uncommon for side A. The left part is higher than the right part. From my observation from my other pendok (Jogja and Solo), usually the left part is lower or same height with the right part.

I will try to ask the seller if there are photos of pendok in original warongko.

Thank you,

Best regards,

Joe
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Old 19th August 2017, 10:32 PM   #22
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Why guess at all?

That is just a waste of time.

Wait until it is to be fitted to a wrongko then see which way it sits best. Even if it is exactly the same in profile, when fitted to a wrongko there will normally be a difference in the way the top of the pendok mates to the gambar.

If we are trying to fit it to an old wrongko, the pendok will show us how it should be fitted, and then we'll probably need to scrape a bit of wood off the gandar and maybe a little off the gambar --- or alternatively we may need to add some wood, or paper, or cloth, or heaven forbid, some jabung.

If we wish to fit it to an old wrongko, or an old gandar, it will be a complete refit, and then we can decide which way looks best.

If I had this pendok in one hand, and a suitable wrongko in the other, I'd try side "B" to the front first.

Why?

Because only side "B" has a top border, and the back side of a pendok does not need a top border, whereas the front side does.

Why?

Convention.

The one thing I would not do is try to work things out in the absence of a need to use the pendok.
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Old 29th August 2017, 01:39 PM   #23
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Hello A. G. Maisey,

Thank you for your advice.



Attached is the picture from my seller.

Best regards,

Joe
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Old 29th August 2017, 09:11 PM   #24
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Attached is the picture from my seller.

Best regards,

Joe[/QUOTE]


So it is a Cirebon kris and the front side is A but is it an original fitting? A nice pendok anyway
Regards
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Old 29th August 2017, 09:25 PM   #25
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Look at the gap between the opposite ends of the top of the pendok & the angle of the top of the pendok.

This pendok is not original to the wrongko, or, it has been put on back to front.
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Old 3rd September 2017, 03:03 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
Look at the gap between the opposite ends of the top of the pendok & the angle of the top of the pendok.

This pendok is not original to the wrongko, or, it has been put on back to front.


Yes. I agree with you.

Best regards,

Joe
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