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Old 23rd June 2021, 01:37 AM   #23
A. G. Maisey
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 5,850

I checked out this thread pretty much as soon as it began, which was a bit of a fluke, because Philippine stuff does not interest me in the slightest, I was bored and chained to the computer anyway, so I had a look.

When I looked I saw not something from the Philppines, but a Javanese pedang lurus or pedang tusuk that I sold to somebody years ago.

I saw it had been correctly identified by a couple of people, I did not think it was really necessary for me to add anything, so closed the thread and did not look at it again. This morning I'm chained to my komputator again, and I noticed that this pedang thread had somehow managed to generate lots & lots of discussion.

Remarkable! This is a very ordinary little pedang lurus or pedang tusuk. "Lurus" simply means "straight", "tusuk" means "stab".

In other words a straight sword or a stabbing sword. Take your pick.

It was made in Jawa. The blade is probably older than the dress.

The dress is European influenced, it might have been made for a guard working in a princely residence, or a Dutch company office, or a grand house, either rural or urban --- or for any other non-cultural reason we may care to imagine.

In this dress it has absolutely nothing to do with Javanese cultural beliefs involving protective deities or beliefs.

Why does the pommel have a human face?

I don't know, but I do know that it would not be there if this dress was put on the blade of a person of Islamic beliefs. Maybe it represented the owner of the sugar factory where the original owner of this pedang stood guard at the entry gate.

It is very easy to get caught up in impossible beliefs when one does not have a very good knowledge of the society, history & culture of the places that produce various artefacts.

This is the reason that for many years I have encouraged people who have an interest in Indonesian weaponry to spend more time reading academic text books and papers dealing with Indonesian, and particularly Javanese & Balinese, society, culture & history, than to spend time reading about Indonesian weaponry.
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