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Old 13th June 2007, 07:15 PM   #1
Tatyana Dianova
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Default Origin of the Kindjal?

I have bought once a small kindjal which has total lenght of only 36 cm (you may see how it looks like near large Caucasian Kindjal ). It has the dark horn hilt decorated with dots of brass and unknown colored substance. It doesn't feel like a real weapon, because it is small, light and thin, and looks more like a decoration piece or a child's dagger. But I think it is really old, maybe more than 100 years old. Has somebody any idea of its real purpose and origin, because I couldn't find anything similar in books?
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Old 13th June 2007, 09:51 PM   #2
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I think that it is from Trabzon area.
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Old 13th June 2007, 10:54 PM   #3
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I would agree.
That area is populated by "tribes" of Georgian/Caucasian origin and had a lot in common with Caucasian weapons.
Interestingly, Caucasian kindjals often had a pocket for a small utility knife and the "ottoman" small kindjals might have been analogues of that implement.
Caucasian kindjals, especially big ones (Satevari) were used mainly not as stabbing but as slashing weapons: kind of short swords, analogous to Gladius.Small variants could not have been very useful in this capacity; likely used mainly as "stickers" in conflict, and for more prosaic purposes.
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Old 23rd June 2007, 03:39 PM   #4
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hi all , firstly pls. accept my apologize for my brooken eng.
it's a kindjal for circassian young lady, whic lives in Turkiye after the big exile from caucassia.
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Old 23rd June 2007, 08:36 PM   #5
Tatyana Dianova
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Thank you all for your replies and opinions! There is another interesting theory from Kirill Rivkin (I hope that he doesn't mind me quoting his message ):

"The decoration of the hilt is undoubtfully Balkan. The blade is of turkish, and as was noted, likely of Trabzonian origin. The crescents on the blade point to the end of XIXth century or early XXth century, the fullering is somewhat unusual for Trabzon pieces. Balkan kindjals often come in awfully different sizes, sometimes related to the national preferences, but often simply determined by the blade they've got their hands on."
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Old 24th June 2007, 08:18 PM   #6
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Tatyana,
This is a picture of a kama display from the National Military History Museum in Sofia, Bulgaria. Note the similarity of the second kama from the bottom to your example, as far as the hilt is concerned. Therefore, I agree with Kirill's observation.
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Teodor

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Old 25th June 2007, 02:42 PM   #7
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Going a little bit further, I would hazzard that Eastern Balkan precisely. Certainly not typical for bosnia, croatia, serbia or montenegro.

I also somewhat agree what janti said (about the blade) and I remember that I saw some typical trabzon knives and short swords with such type of decoration.
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Old 25th June 2007, 02:49 PM   #8
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Dear TVV , could you tell us whats writing under the kama's.
I think i saw somethink like kabardia
In Topkapi palace (museum ) you can find hundreds weapons whic belongs to difrent nationalites.
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Old 26th June 2007, 03:27 AM   #9
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Janti,
As in almost all museums, the description is far too generic: "Kamas, Caucasian Type". This is the little cardboard label above the two bigger kamas, the small cardboard label right of the bottom small one says "Kama, Manufactured in Gabrovo".
I have attached a better picture of the kama in question, and also a picture of a much simpler example I have, which has similar hilt decoration - dots filled with pastes.
I wish the Museum of Military History in Sofia could compare to Askeri and Top Kapi.
Regards,
Teodor
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