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Old 14th April 2005, 02:22 AM   #31
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Here are some pictures of the hilt of the knife above. The first one shows the tear drop cross section as reflected in the shape of the butt plate (the edge of the blade is oriented up in each of these pictures). The pointed end of the tear drop is quite sharp, and that sharpness is reflected in the shape of the wooden grip. A narrow ridge runs down the edge-side of the handle, as seen in the second picture -- the shadow on the back side of the handle serving to indicate the sharp demarcation of the sides of the handle around this ridge. Not your usual Philippine knife handle, and I would suggest more of a European trait than a local native feature.
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Old 14th April 2005, 02:39 AM   #32
tom hyle
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I'm not so sure; I see your point in terms of the peined tang, the buttplate, and the two ferules, but I'm not so sure about that ridge as an European feature. It compares to sharpish/raised ridges on handles on knives and spears from Japan. It also seems to relate to the way on some Visayan octagon section handles the most forward side of the octagon is so narrow as to almost be an edge, and some even view them as, and some even are, heptagonal. Also (and I think related to the Visayan ones I just mentioned in some measure; in this feature), a ridge running down the finger edge is seen on the "planar ukiran" k(e)ris handles with the heptagonal cross-sections. Also, it resembles the sharpish edge at the front of the hoof on some hoof pommels, and this is real noticeable if you think of ones with a rear ferule and buttplate fitted to the hoof. On the other hand, a similarly oriented egg-shape cross section is often recommended in knife making instruction writings in N America; on the hind leg, I don't neccessarily see it that much on old European stuff that comes to mind? The widest part of some sabre hilts with "swelled center" shaped grips.....axe handles......perhaps it is even a Philippine influence on the modern N American stuff.

Last edited by tom hyle : 14th April 2005 at 03:21 AM.
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Old 15th April 2005, 02:05 PM   #33
tom hyle
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Now, I'm gonna rip the lid off my own clam bake, and tell you the big dividing difference between matulis and talibon blades (other than the tang): On the talibon the spine and the cutting edge kink forward at pretty much one same point, but on matulis, as you move down the sword toward the point, first the cutting edge curves forward, then, inches later, the spine, which creates a long widened cutting area in kind of the middle of the blade. Matulis' blade looks like a talibon (or a Laz bichaq/Black Sea yatagan) scabbard.
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Old 15th April 2005, 04:56 PM   #34
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This thread obviously originated during my "haitus" but I strongly feel that these are definitely Luzon knives made to be used as general purpose pieces, equally tool and weapon, with the flattened tip possibly, but not definitely having something to do with Spanish regulations from time to time.
Thesr's always a chance, of course, that the style was introduced in Spanish trafficking between S. America and Spain and then "made their own" over time, but my question here is how long does a particular style have to be in common use in a country before it's accepted as peculiar to that country?
That sort have thing has been going on since the advent of trade, conquests and warfare and often led to the actual evolution of many weapons types.
I also feel that the "tear drop" handle has been apparent, in one form or another on many Philippino swords for a considerable period and may actually be an indication of a piece whose primary use is oriented toward true weaponry as it allows for "feeling" the correct orientation in the dark, without having to visually inspect it, something not normally required of a tool.
I've seen a small number of these over the past few years and even had one here, which I sadly traded off.
One factor on many that seems evident to me is the angled end often combined with a bellied blade rarely, if ever, shows any sign of having been shortened, but rather the opposite, often with a miniscule swelling to the end indicating that it was forged that way.
One last comment.....the marking on the blade of the piece that started this thread would seem EXTREMELY appropriate on a captured piece, either by a spanish soldier, or equally, even a spanish speaking soldier of another country while it would seem to be improper for an arsenal type weapon.
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