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Old 13th August 2019, 12:46 PM   #10
Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 135

Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
David, I have no knowledge of the Sundanese language, however, I have recently made the acquaintance of a gentleman from Sunda who was a university lecturer, he tells me that "duhung" ie, Amuk's "doehoeng" is in fact not a direct equivalent to the Javanese "duwung" or "dhuwung", but rather can only be used to refer to a keris that is in the possession of an important man, somebody with some sort of government rank, or who is recognised in his community as being of high status.

If that keris were to become the possession of somebody who was not a person of importance, then strictly speaking, it could no longer be referred to as "duhung".

Thus, all these keris that Amuk has shown to us must be keris that belong at this present time to a person of some status.
As with Javanese, Sundanese has high and low forms, i.e. kasar (loosely translate to coarse, rough, abrasive, harsh) or halus (loosely translated to proper, polished, refine). To my understanding, "keris" is on the kasar end of the spectrum though wouldn't necessarily register as kasar if you referred to your own keris or referring to the object abstractly as "keris". Though the halus or proper term for another person's keris, especially if they were high born or were had rank or status would indeed be duhung. That's my understanding of it anyway. I think the term is relatively archaic as far as working Sundanese goes.

So in the context of this post and to what Alan's friend from Sunda said, it makes sense that in the Sundanese language that these are referred to as duhung as opposed to just "keris". You would probably not refer to your own keris as a "duhung" though, even if you were of high status.

Last edited by jagabuwana; 14th August 2019 at 02:15 AM.
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