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Old 10th June 2006, 05:44 PM   #1
Dajak
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Default Dajak Handle human bone

Dajak handle human bone

Take a look at the inlay
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Old 10th June 2006, 08:09 PM   #2
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That's very interesting Dajak. Thanks for showing it.
This may be pure semantics, but the inlay does not necessarily imply "witchcraft" as you stated in Valjhun's thread, though some of it might serve some talismanic or protective purpose. The silver swirling patterns appear to be purely decorative. The dots and the "X" might serve a talismanic purpose and the engraved symbol as well, but as a stickler for language i would hardly call this "witchcraft". That is a more specific and Euro-centric term. The true meanings of these symbols will probably never be revealed, but they certainly are culturally specific to the Dayak. It is interesting that the dot pattern is almost set up in a Tree of Life pattern, though i highly doubt this is a reference to anything Qabalistic. Still an interesting coincidence. If i were a Moslem i might mark my blade with a passage from the Quran...a Christian, a cross....a Jew, Solomon's seal....and so on, but i wouldn't label that examples of "witchcraft".
Did this mandau also come with a sheath? If so, how is that decorated?
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Old 10th June 2006, 08:18 PM   #3
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At last someone else has said Euro-centric and not a European, I agree completely. I think it can be difficult to move forward without emptying all the baggage.
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Old 10th June 2006, 08:22 PM   #4
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I do not mean the silver inlay or the brass dots it is very hard to see on the pic

It has a nice scabbard there are marks on the blade that looks like witchcraft signs thats why I use the term I only see that on items that shaman s use
to give protection

Keltisch people from England use also signs some times called witchcraft signs
but are not

The story about the dots goes that every head that was taken a dot was put in the mandau ( Never get any proof off this)

Last edited by Dajak : 10th June 2006 at 08:43 PM.
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Old 10th June 2006, 08:33 PM   #5
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What an excellent example. Thanks for sharing this
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Old 10th June 2006, 08:52 PM   #6
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Default scabbard

scabbard
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Old 10th June 2006, 09:02 PM   #7
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lovely piece, "witchcraft" might well be a European term but concepts of harmful sorcery are universal. I have a more recent weapon with the same rattan work. I shall post picture, I bet there are regional styles.
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Old 10th June 2006, 09:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dajak
I do not mean the silver inlay or the brass dots it is very hard to see on the pic

It has a nice scabbard there are marks on the blade that looks like witchcraft signs thats why I use the term I only see that on items that shaman s use
to give protection

Keltisch people from England use also signs some times called witchcraft signs
but are not

The story about the dots goes that every head that was taken a dot was put in the mandau ( Never get any proof off this)


Yes Dajak, i understand that you are referring to engraved symbol on the blade, not the inlays. Sorry to confuse you by commenting on the other designs.
My point is that this symbol could hardly have anything to do with "witchcraft" which is a Euro-centric folk magick tradition. I think that it is important that we try to be as academically correct as possible in these discussions. Witchcraft is a somewhat specific term which cannot be applied to the Dayak. Kelts, on the otherhand, can legitimately lay claim to the term, so i am confused as to what Keltic signs from England you are referring to which are not related to witchcraft.
Shaman is also a cultural appropiation, as it truly only applies to the Turkic-Mongol cultures of northern Asia and Mongolia. It is often used in a broad and generic way that is totally incorrect to it's original intent. I am sure that the Dayak have their own terminology that is far more exacting and descriptive of the type of magick or mysticism that these symbols might be applied to.
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Old 10th June 2006, 09:14 PM   #9
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Could be from the the same village?
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Old 10th June 2006, 09:15 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Simmons
lovely piece, "witchcraft" might well be a European term but concepts of harmful sorcery are universal. I have a more recent weapon with the same rattan work. I shall post picture, I bet there are regional styles.


Sorry Tim, but i also have problems with relating witchcraft specifically to "harmful sorcery". This is just not historically correct. It is mostly a Christian misconception put forth by the church to discredit competing practices.
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Old 10th June 2006, 09:18 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Simmons
Could be from the the same village?


AFAIK this woven pattern is tradition to the Dayak in general and isn't specific to any one village, but perhaps Dajak knows better as he is far better informed on the Dayak than i.
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Old 10th June 2006, 09:21 PM   #12
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Sorry my mistake, the concept of harmful sorcery, a real thing to some people is not "witchcraft" but it has to be said, you would go to your local spook to combat any conceived supernatural threat.
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Old 10th June 2006, 09:24 PM   #13
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Hi Tim look good at the rattan difference to see old style and new style



Let s call it Goena Goena that s the indonesian worth for it instead off witchcraft

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Old 10th June 2006, 09:28 PM   #14
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Maybe not the same village but same region.
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Old 10th June 2006, 09:53 PM   #15
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yes the region off Borneo Tim
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Old 10th June 2006, 11:19 PM   #16
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TAILSMANIC MAGIC A TAILSMAN TO PROTECT GIVE POWER AND HELP SUCCED IN ANY ENDEVOR. IT CAN TAKE THE FORM OF SYMBOLS, WRITING, A OBJECT OR A CONCOCTION OF SECERET MAGIC INGREDIENTS. THEY HAVE BEEN PRESENT IN MOST IF NOT ALL PRIMATIVE SOCIETYS USUALLY ADMINISTERED BY THE WITCHDOCTOR, SHAMAN,MEDICINE MAN, ECT. FOR A MODEST FEE.
THESE PEOPLE WERE IMPORTANT IN PRIMATIVE SOCIETY A WITCHDOCTOR WITH A GOOD RECORD OF SUCESS AGAINST THE EMEMY BY THE WARRIORS HE MADE TAILSMAN FOR ALSO PROVIDED VERY GOOD PROPAGANDA. A PROPERLY MOTIVATED GROUP WITH A KNOWN FIRST CLASS MEDICINE MAN HAD A ADVANTAGE AGAINST THE GROUP THAT HAD SECOND CLASS PROTECTION.

A VERY NICE MANDAU WITH SEVERAL TYPES OF TAILSMAN LIKE HUMAN BONE I ASSUME THE HANDLE IS MADE OF THE UPPER END OF THE FEMUR WHERE IT FITS INTO THE PELVIS. THE TOGGLE IS A NICELY PATINATED HORNBILL BILL, THAT ALSO HAS TAILSMANIC PROPERTYS AND SHOULD HELP THE WAR PARTY TO TRAVEL UNSEEN STRAIGHT TO THEIR VICTIMS AND TO RETURN HOME SAFELY THE SAME WAY. JUST AS THE HORNBILL FLYS QUIETLY AND UNSEEN ABOVE THE JUNGLE IN A STRAIGHT LINE. THE INSCRIPTIONS AND SYMBOLS ON THE BLADE AND THE CARVED HANDLE WOULD ALSO HAVE SOME SORT OF SYMBOLISM AND POWER ASSOCIATED WITH THEM. I SUSPECT THE WICKER WORK IN THE FANCY KNOTS ALSO HAVE SOME PURPOSE AND MEANING OTHER THAN LOOKING PRETTY. WHAT KIND OF ANIMAL DID THE SKIN WITH HAIR ON IT COME FROM? AND IS THE HAIR AT THE TIP OF THE SCABBARD HUMAN?

DAYAK WEAPONS ARE FULL OF MAGIC AS WELL AS ART AND DESPITE THEIR BEAUTY (OR CREEPYNESS ) ARE QUITE FUNCTIONAL.
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Old 11th June 2006, 08:13 AM   #17
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Hi Vandoo The hair is goat hair I noticed in studying these handle s that the most oldest mandau s have goathair in their handles and have somethimes brayded carry band made from hair but don t forget there always exceptions
the hair looks like it come from the nevel panther

Thake a look at the oldman jimpul that was posted earlyer on this forum that date easy back to before 1850

here some other talisman stuff
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Old 11th June 2006, 12:30 PM   #18
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It is my understanding that headhunters sew the mouth and eyelids closed (on the dis-membered heads) to prevent the spirit of the vanquished foe, from 'haunting' them, .......effectively they capture the soul.
My question is this, do you think the human bone came from an ancestor? or from a past enemy? I would assume either way the talisman properties of this would be to empower it with the spirit of the bone's 'owner'. But, the fear of an enemy's spirit suggests the possibility that this came from an ancestor?

A VERY INTERESTING DYJAK
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Old 11th June 2006, 02:25 PM   #19
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I am not 100% certain this bone is human: too much carving has obscured the silhouette. It does resemble superficially the Humerus (shoulder bone), but I would not bet my house (or even $100) on it.
Recently, somebody sold a Naga Dao with a 100% real human Femur (Thigh bone) for a handle.
Call it Eurocentric ( ) squeamishness or anything else equally PC and offensive at the same time, but I would never, ever bring a thing like that into my house! Human remnants need to be buried, not re-used. Let the headhunters do what they want, but I shall stay out of it.
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Old 11th June 2006, 02:28 PM   #20
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It is not completely my field, but for the tsantsa the sewn eyes and mouth was indeed to keep the spirit in the hunted head to prevent haunting the hunters.

The believe of the Dayak was that the spirit of the hunted enemy should feel welcome in his new village and helped to increase the power of his new tribe.
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Old 11th June 2006, 08:05 PM   #21
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It was like this the head was taken give you the power from the man too the more heads the more power and the best warrior

Ariel this is something off their culture and the head is from around 1850 that also can be seeing in many museums

In south Amerika are people that take the skin off and schrunk the haed called the Jivaro s
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Old 12th June 2006, 12:21 AM   #22
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TAKE A LOOK AT EBAY AUCTION #6284865742 IT IS A POSTCARD OF TWO SHRUNKEN MEN WHICH ARE IN A MUSEUM. THEY ARE NO LONGER ON DISPLAY AS THERE WAS SOME CONTROVERSY AS TO WHO MADE THEM AND WHEN. I BOUGHT THE CARD FOR A FRIEND OF MINE WHO LIKES SUCH STUFF AND HAD NEVER BOUGHT ON EBAY. IT WAS DONE IN THE SAME WAY AS THE JIVARO SHRINK THEIR ENEMYS HEADS WHICH WAS ONLY DONE IN SOUTH AMERICA TO MY KNOWLEGE.

HEADHUNTING HAS BEEN A CUSTOM IN MANY PARTS OF THE WORLD AND PERHAPS WAS DONE IN EUROPE DURING PRIMATIVE TIMES. THERE WAS EVEN SEVERAL MOVIES AND A SUCESSFUL TV SHOW THAT RAN FOR SEVERAL YEARS HIGHLANDER MOST KEPT THE SKULL BONE AND HAD DIFFERENT CEREMONYS TO APPEASE THE SPIRITS. IN TIBET THE MONKS USE THE BONES OF THE OLDER MONKS FOR MANY THINGS AND OFTEN MADE A DRINKING CUP FROM THE TOP OF THE SKULL. I SUPPOSE IT WAS SYMBOLIC OF DRINKING OF THE KNOWLEGE OF THE OLDER MONK AND A WAY OF REMEMBERING AND HONORING THEIR TEACHINGS. THE DAYAKS OFTEN HAD A SPECIAL SKULL TREE OUTSIDE OF THE VILLAGE WHERE THEY WERE PLACED AND CEREMONYS PREFORMED UNTIL IT THEY WERE APPEASED AND COULD THEN BE SAFELY WELCOMED INTO THE VILLAGE AND HUNG IN A PLACE OF HONOR IN THE LONGHOUSE. THEIR SPIRITS THEN HELPED THE VILLAGE AND GAVE THEM POWER AND PRESTIGE. AT LEAST THAT IS HOW I UNDERSTAND IT TO BE, OF COURSE I AM NOT A DAYAK AND DIDN'T LIVE IN THOSE TIMES SO DON'T KNOW FOR SURE.
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