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Old 1st April 2005, 03:47 PM   #1
Spunjer
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Lightbulb Barong Classification

i've compiled this a while back, but just didn't have the time to post it. my main resources are cato's book and an old thread from the old website. the answer on that old thread was given by none other than our fellow forumite, zelbone. i emailed him a copy of this compilation, and he informed me that these are general guidelines , and not to be taken as gospel. to everyone else; you are more than welcome to chime in. as a matter of fact, i would like to encourage everyone to help out if there's anything else that's been left out. i am hoping that this will serve as referrence for future collectors and something that veteran collectors can go back from time to time. once again, please bear in mind that this is a general guideline. as we all know, we are barely scratching the surface on moro weapons, and i'm hoping that this would help out just a little. without further ado, here is my thesis on the magnificent barong...

BARONG




TYPES



*YAKAN

*TAUSUG

*SAMAL






YAKAN CHARACTERISTICS:

HILT

*CREST RISES TO A HEIGHT OF SEVERAL INCHES AND IS WITHOUT THE CURVES THAT ARE FOUND ON OTHER BARONG KAKATUAS

*THE STRAIGHT PLUME IS BEVELED AND RATHER THICK AT THE UPPERMOST POINT, CREATING A DRAMATIC REGAL EFFECT

*IDENTICAL TO PIRAS

*MOST LIKELY INCORPORATED WITH CARABAO HORN

*INSTEAD OF TYPICAL 3 IN. PUNTO (SLEEVE) YAKAN BARONG SLEEVES ARE APPROX. ONE AND A QUARTER INCHES, AGAIN SIMILAR TO PIRAS

*KAKATUA BEAKS ARE NORMALLY UNADORNED, PLAINER, MORE SUBTLE, BEAK-LIKE TERMINAL




FOR REFERRENCE, SEE CATO'S PLATE 21




TAUSUG CHARACTERISTICS:

HILT

*KAKATUA PLUME ALMOST ALWAYS EXTEND OUT AN ANGLE AWAY FROM THE POINT OF THE BLADE; USUALLY AT A 45 DEG. ANGLE WITH THE BUTT
*HEAVILY CARVED AND DECORATED IN THE STANDARD UKKIL DESIGN
*POMMEL BUTTS ARE USUALLY A 45 DEG. OR LESS IN RELATIONSHIP TO THE PLANE OF THE BLADE SIMILAR TO YAKAN GEOMETRY
*KAKATUA BEAKS ARE SOMEWHAT SIMILAR TO YAKAN'S, WHERE IT'S NORMALLY UNADORNED, PLAINER, MORE SUBTLE, BEAK-LIKE TERMINAL




FOR REFERRENCES, SEE CATO'S PLATE 19, FAR LEFT, AND PLATE 20, LEFT



SCABBARD

*DOESN'T NORMALLY TAPERS DOWN DRASTICALLY AT THE TERMINAL END
*TERMINAL END ARE USUALLY WIDER WITH A LARGER FLORALLY CARVED UKKIL DESIGN
*THE SAMPIL, OR MOUTH PART OF THE SCABBARD TENDS TO HAVE WING-LIKE APPENDAGES ON BOTH THE SPINE SIDE AND THE EDGE SIDE OF THE MOUTH (DATU CLASS TAGUB)




FOR REFERRENCES, SEE CATO'S PLATE 23 AND 24; PLATE 26, CENTER



SAMAL CHARACTERISTICS:


HILT

*KAKATUA PLUME TEND TO CURL FIRST, THEN UBRUPTLY EXTENDS OUT
*APPENDAGES (KAKATUA PLUME) ARE USUALLY SMALLER COMPARED TO THE TAUSUG'S
*SAMAL ARE QUITE FOND OF BRAIDED SILVER WIRE WHERE THE WOODEN KAKATUA MEET THE SILVER FERRULE (PUNTO)
*BUTT-END IS ALMOST ALWAYS PERPENDICULAR TO THE PLANE OF THE BLADE, GIVING THE PLUME THE TENDENCY TO CURL IN FIRST THEN EXTENDS OUT
*KAKATUA BEAK USUALLY HAVE A SMALL RECTANGULAR CARVED APPENDAGE AT THE END
*BEAK IS MORE ORNATED THAN THE TAUSUG'S (EXCEPT ON SUPERLATIVE JUNGGAYAN PIECES IN WHICH THE TAUSUGS ARE ELABORATELY CARVED AS WELL)



FOR REFERRENCES, SEE CATO'S PLATE 19, FAR RIGHT; PLATE 20, RIGHT





SCABBARD

*TERMINAL END OF THE SCABBARD TAPERS DOWN WITH THE SHAPE OF THE BLADE AND THEN ENDS WITH A SMALL CARVED TERMINAL PROJECTION
*AS FOR THE SAMPIL, USUALLY HAVE ONE ROUNDED SHOULDER ON THE SPINE SIDE OF THE SCABBARD AND A WING-LIKE APPENDAGE ON THE EDGE SIDE
*BOTH SIDES ARE CARVED WITH UKKIL DESIGN



FOR REFERRENCE, SEE CATO'S PLATE 20, RIGHT










BARONG CLASS


*FIRST CLASS / DATU / CEREMONIAL
*MIDDLE CLASS / COMMONER
*LOW CLASS / FIGHTING




FIRST CLASS / DATU / CEREMONIAL CLASS CHARACTERISTICS:


HILT/POMMEL

*KNOWN AS JUNGGAYAN DUE TO THE EXTENDED CREST AND BILL ON THE KAKATUA POMMEL
*JUNGGAYAN POMMELS RANGE FROM FIVE AND A HALF TO EIGHT INCHES IN LENGTH
*KAKATUA PLUME ASCENDS IN A GRADUAL CURVE UNTIL IT REACHES THE TERMINUS, WHERE IT CURLS UPWARDS
*MOST HAVE ONE OR MORE THIN, CARABAO HORN SPACERS AT THE JUNCTION OF THE HILT AND THE POMMEL
*FOR PUNTO, NORMALLY INCORPORATES ONE FULL SLEEVE
*CYLINDRICAL PANELS (PUNTO) ON THE UPPER HILT, JUST ABOVE THE FERRULE, USUALLY COVERED WITH SMALL, SEMI CIRCULAR OR DIAGONAL UKKIL DESIGNS, AND WERE EXECUTED IN BRASS, SILVER, AND RARELY, GOLD
*INTERSPERSED WITH THE PANEL ARE BANDS OF PLAITED SILVER WIRE
CROWN MATERIALS:

1) KAMAGONG WOOD = USUALLY INLAID WITH GEOMETRICALLY SHAPED PIECES OF BONE
OR IVORY THAT WERE FITTED ON THE SIDES OF THE POMMEL AREA AND/OR THE BUTT OF THE
WEAPON. THIS TYPE ARE POPULAR WITH THE MOROS FROM *THE SOUTHERN MOST ISLANDS OF
THE SULU ARCHIPELAGO*

2) SILVER = IN REALITY ARE IN SHEET FORM OVERLAID UPON A PRE CARVED WOODEN
CORE

3) CARABAO HORN = OCCASIONALLY USED AND NORMALLY MATED WITH BUNTI

4) IVORY = VERY POPULAR WITH ARISTOCRATS AND SULTANS




FOR REFERRENCE, SEE CATO'S PLATE 17, AND PLATE 19, MIDDLE, MOST LIKELY FAR
LEFT AND FAR RIGHT; PLATE 20, 22, 23, 24, AND 25








MIDDLE CLASS / COMMONER CHARACTERISTICS:

HILT/POMMEL

*MORE ELABORATE THAN THE VERY SIMPLE DESIGNS FOUND ON FIGHTING BARONG

*FREQUENTLY TOPPED WITH INTRICATELY-CARVED RENDERINGS OF THE KAKATUA'S PLUMMAGE AND BEAK

*PUNTOS ARE DECORATED SIMPLY, WITH LINE THAT CIRCUMSCRIBE THE FERRULE AT THE TOP AND BOTTOM

*MORE OFTEN THAN NOT, RATHER THAN ONE FULL SLEEVE, IT INCORPORATES THREE OR FOUR SILVER BANDS THAT ALTERNATE WITH BANDS OF BRAIDED JUTE




FOR REFERRENCES, SEE CATO'S PLATE 18, RIGHT; PLATE 19, SECOND FROM FAR RIGHT; PLATE 27, LEFT



LOW CLASS / FIGHTING CHARACTERISTICS:

HILT/POMMEL

*PUNTOS GENERALLY CONSIST OF A NARROW RING, LESS THAN AN INCH WIDE (OF SILVER, BRASS, OR CARABAO HORN) AT THE BOTTOM OF THE POMMEL

*PLACED ABOVE THE ABBREVIATED PUNTO IS A CLUSTER OF WOVEN JUTE BAND CALLED LANGDAY

*FOR POMMEL DESIGNS, COMBAT BARONGS ARE DISTINGUISHED BY SHORT PROTRUSIONS WHICH ARE LITTLE MORE THAN MERE SUGGESTIONS OF THE CREST AND THE BEAK OF THE KAKATUA MOTIF

*NOT OFTEN SEEN ARE POMMELS STYLED AFTER A HORSE'S HOOF WHICH ARE CYLINDRICAL IN APPEARANCE, WITH A DOWN-TURNED END




FOR REFERRENCES, SEE CATO'S PLATE 19, SECOND FROM LEFT; PLATE 27, RIGHT
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Old 1st April 2005, 04:54 PM   #2
Ann Feuerbach
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Thanks loads for this info. I have been researching a Barong for a friend of mine and have been coming up dry. Somehow her father got it from someone who "captured" the barong during fighting on Sulu Island on Jan 27th 1913. Now I just need to get the references.
Ann
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Old 1st April 2005, 04:54 PM   #3
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Very useful introduction. Many thanks.
Now, if only somebody would do the same with these blasted Visayan weapons! Every time I read yet another casual remark about some fine point of a tenegre vs. sansibar (?), I get frustrated.
It is as if these buggers invented their own language and keep it sectret from us, mortals!
Come on, guys! We, the ignoramuses, need your help!
And please illustrate your points with pics.
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Old 1st April 2005, 07:46 PM   #4
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ann,

this might help you out a bit. the date you've provided falls within this time frame. it could've have been captured during one of the skirmishes that led up to the battle of bud bagsak in sulu. here's an excerpt:

"From January-June, the whole Moro ward of Lati (located at the eastern most tip of Sulu Mainland) with a population of between 6,000 to 10,000, fortified themselves in a cotta in Mt. Bagsak. On June 11, 1913 Gen. John Pershing ordered the attack with the assistance of Charlie Schuck who reported that it was easy to attack The Moro Fort. General Pershing and his American military attacked the Fort at Bud Bagsak. The Muslim led by their Nakil Amil bravely defended their Fort, first with guns and bullets and knives and bolos.

The four-day battle was personally led by U.S. Brigadier General John "Black Jack" J. Pershing of the 8th Infantry and Philippine Scouts against Moro resistance fighters armed mostly with kris, barongs, spears and few guns. In many other battles in the Morolands, the U.S. Army Colt 0.45 caliber pistol was tested and perfected as an effective "man stopper" against the brave Moro fighters.

During the battle Pershing came up to the front line and: "Stood so close to the trench, directing operations, that his life was endangered by flying barongs and spears which were being continually hurled from the Moro stronghold." At this point in the battle, Pershing sent American officers into the front lines to lead the attack. But, after four days, the Fort at Bud Bagsak, along with every warrior fell. General Pershing in a letter to his wife, he wrote: "THE FIGHTING WAS THE FIERCEST I HAVE EVER SEEN." The Moros fought like Devils. They justified the observation Pershing had made of them: "They are absolutely fearless, and once committed to combat they count death as a mere incident."


hope this helps...


ariel,

good luck with the visayan weapons...
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Old 1st April 2005, 08:47 PM   #5
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Not bad, Spunger. Have one question, on Samal pommel angles, I thought that the angle was not prependicular to the blade but more of a 90 degree angle almost in line in angle to the blade.
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Old 1st April 2005, 09:16 PM   #6
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jose,

i stand corrected. you're right, that'd make more sense...
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Old 2nd April 2005, 02:47 AM   #7
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Spunger, you forgot to mention that these "general guidelines" basically applies to the earlier barungs (pre-1930's) and not to barungs from WWII or later. The more contemporary barongs from WWII and later are almost too similar to distinguish between the different Sulu tribes.
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Old 2nd April 2005, 02:05 PM   #8
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Quote:
...these "general guidelines" basically applies to the earlier barungs (pre-1930's) and not to barungs from WWII or later. The more contemporary barongs from WWII and later are almost too similar to distinguish between the different Sulu tribes.
thanks zel. forgot to add that very important piece of info...
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Old 2nd April 2005, 04:55 PM   #9
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Thanks Spunjer for the additional info. I think the scabbard says the guy was in the 8th Cavalry. Interesting bit of history.
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Old 3rd April 2005, 03:50 AM   #10
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Ok, I hate to be a naysayer here, but particularly the classification between Samal and Tausug barong, just does not hold up when you start to study period pics. Bob Cato lists both styles as variations of barong, but doesnt draw a tribal distinction. Part of the reason for this, is if you do a large survey of period pictures, you will find many period pics in which you will have a group of Tausug wearing both styles of barong, or a group of Samal, etc.... Of note are plates 70 and 71 of D. Encinas book "Moros as seen in Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago", featuring the Sultan of Sulu and his retainers (all Tausug). Also, one will see the "Tausug Crest" (according to this classification scheme) often on barong that have a "Samal" (again according to this scheme) scabbard and vice versa. Now if this was rare occurances, they could be seen as exceptions (possible swaps in scabbards, taste of owner, etc...), but the frequency is quite high. I did not see Banati listed as a pommel material, and at least in my experience this is the most common even amongst Jungayan, and then there generally are no spacers, so that would be in contradiction to the classification of Jungayan as mostly having spacers. I have also seen a high incidence of solid puntos on both middle and fighting barong, so I would be hesitant to say most have interspersed puntos. Finally there are a few of variations left out, such the no metal punto barong with only jute wrap, horn ferrule variations, horse hoof pommels, ball pommels, naga pommels, etc....
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Old 3rd April 2005, 02:36 PM   #11
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federico,
glad you could chime in. you forgot to mention the boto shaped pommels so, since you appear to be the primary authority on moro weapons, would it be safe to suggest that we should just forget about the classification? with your vast knowledge on this matter, how do you suggest i approach this? i'm really just trying to create a very elementary, general guideline. ultimately, what i'm trying to do is, i'm just trying to learn more about what measely collection i have, and at the least would like to know where it specifically came from. as i've stated, i've used cato's book and this specific thread as my referrence:
http://www.vikingsword.com/ubb/Forum1/HTML/000562.html

please fred, don't leave us hanging like this. whenever you get the time, it would be great if you can add pictures and stuff, maybe elaborate even more, then this thread would definitely be archive material...

ron
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Old 10th April 2005, 05:52 AM   #12
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Smile Classifying a shandigan barung

Hi Spunjer:

How would you classify this particular shandigan barung according to the scheme you have outlined?

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...tem=7312694597

Ian.
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Old 10th April 2005, 06:53 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spunjer
federico,
glad you could chime in. you forgot to mention the boto shaped pommels so, since you appear to be the primary authority on moro weapons, would it be safe to suggest that we should just forget about the classification? with your vast knowledge on this matter, how do you suggest i approach this? i'm really just trying to create a very elementary, general guideline. ultimately, what i'm trying to do is, i'm just trying to learn more about what measely collection i have, and at the least would like to know where it specifically came from. as i've stated, i've used cato's book and this specific thread as my referrence:
http://www.vikingsword.com/ubb/Forum1/HTML/000562.html

please fred, don't leave us hanging like this. whenever you get the time, it would be great if you can add pictures and stuff, maybe elaborate even more, then this thread would definitely be archive material...

ron


primary authority???
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Old 10th April 2005, 10:15 AM   #14
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This is similar to what we're discussing with seme; there appear to be two definably different styles. defining them as different by their feature is like part A, then comes B; defining whether it is age/time, ethnicity, social status, personal taste, preferred fighting style, or what that makes for the difference; a whole 'nother, vaguer, more difficult it seems, and thankfully seperable can of worms.
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Old 10th April 2005, 01:47 PM   #15
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ian,
good question. i was discussing that particular barong with a fellow forumite offline. it appears to be a post -1930 type based on the statement below:
Quote:
Spunjer
Quote:
...these "general guidelines" basically applies to the earlier barungs (pre-1930's) and not to barungs from WWII or later. The more contemporary barongs from WWII and later are almost too similar to distinguish between the different Sulu tribes.


thanks zel. forgot to add that very important piece of info...
based on our discussion, the punto appearance was mentioned; somehow it looks newer. also the hilt is missing the sheen found on older ones; but then again it could be the picture. what's your opinion on it?

btw, here's another one that i would like to hear everyone's comment:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...MEDW%3AIT&rd=1
samal battle barong???
i will add some closeups as soon as possible...
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Old 10th April 2005, 04:19 PM   #16
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Hi Spunjer:

I put this one up for a couple of reasons. One of those is identifying when the shandigan style of barung arose. I have not seen more than a couple that I would confidently date to the 19th C. or earlier. Are most examples that we see today mainly a modern revival of an older and rare form?

As you say, this one could be post-1930 or has some post-1930 elements, but it's hard to say without direct inspection. It may be earlier 20th C. The punto, in particular, looks fairly recent.

Speaking of this punto, one thing missing from your previous discussions is mention of the Muslims living in the southern half of Palawan. The Palawano muslims are related to the Tausug and Samal, but they have some "local" features to their weapons in terms of decoration to the hilt and scabbard. One of the features that I have observed is the use of triangular designs, similar to the "nicks" seen on the punto of this barung. Similar designs are seen on some of the recently made barung scababrds from northern Borneo. You may have seen some Palawano pieces when you visited Mr Ven.

How do the Palawano weapons fit into your overall classification?

Ian.
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Old 10th April 2005, 04:43 PM   #17
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I think the round hollow grind as such, especially applied to the flats of a blade, as with shandigan barong, and often on a variety of other sword types (I've seen kukuri, of course, pedang sabet/parang nabur, and Japanese "commoner" swords, as well as the contemporary (to us) CAS Iberia and I forget their big competitor's name work, and that of their smaller contemporaries) first came into coastal Asia plus India (India first? from Europe?) perhaps starting in the mid 19th, hitting some sort of pinnacle in the south before wwII, and coming in up north (PI) mostly after wwwII. Japan seems to cover almost the whole timeframe, as do kukuri?).
As to the finish on old Moro wood sword dress: I've seen it on nice old prewwII stuff be pretty much bare dry wood that had once been oiled or lightly waxed or else a thick, built-up high-gloss clear lacquer type substance; again we have two very different styles.......
Does some sort of flow of technological and cultural influence seem to sweep along the southern edge of the Himalayas?..........random thought...........
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Old 11th April 2005, 10:15 PM   #18
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ian,
again, for clarification, the compilation was based on the two sources given above. this is not mine to take credit for; i'm merely rehashing what's already been written, kinda like cliff notes. i haven't read any threads, past or present, that challenges what the authors wrote and discussed, therefore i would assume that the majority agrees to what's being stated. if there are new findings and would like to share the information, that is great; this is what this thread is for. i'd like to be content knowing i have a neat looking leaf shaped sword with wooden handles and wooden scabbard, but unfortunately (or fortunately, however you wanna look at it) i respect it too much and i think it would be a travesty to not learn more about it.

as for where the palawano barong fits in according to the original post; well, it doesn't because those sources quoted only explains, and again i would like to emphasize, the general differences between the tausug, samal and yakan barongs.

i'm sure volumes can be written about the barong in general, as i'm sure there are variants within those tribes that we haven't seen before. maybe one day, a book or two will be written about it, and that goes for all pilipino weapons. that would be nice...

tom,
not trying to ignore you or anything, i just need to clarify these things. as for your thoughts, it is something to think about.

themorningstar,
you have pm!
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Old 11th April 2005, 10:27 PM   #19
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here's the barong i was talking about...
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Old 11th April 2005, 11:46 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spunjer
federico,
glad you could chime in. you forgot to mention the boto shaped pommels so, since you appear to be the primary authority on moro weapons, would it be safe to suggest that we should just forget about the classification? with your vast knowledge on this matter, how do you suggest i approach this? i'm really just trying to create a very elementary, general guideline. ultimately, what i'm trying to do is, i'm just trying to learn more about what measely collection i have, and at the least would like to know where it specifically came from. as i've stated, i've used cato's book and this specific thread as my referrence:
http://www.vikingsword.com/ubb/Forum1/HTML/000562.html

please fred, don't leave us hanging like this. whenever you get the time, it would be great if you can add pictures and stuff, maybe elaborate even more, then this thread would definitely be archive material...

ron
Ok...I am far from an authority on anything, let alone Moro Swords, just another hobbiest. However, this topic came up way back when before Mabagani joined the forum, and he was the one who pointed out to me that such pictures occur. I cant remember which reference he said to look at, and he would have far better knowledge about more common places to find these pics as he originally pointed it out to me, and has a far greater knowledge of reference material. Unfortunately all my good pics arent scanned, so I dont have a way of posting them online, and can only cite page numbers.

One thing you will note, is modern Tausug barong have many of the "Samal" traits, such as the up-turned scabbard tip, rounded shoulder, etc... My own suspicion, for what its worth as an opinion of a non-expert, has been what if the style denotes age (eg. changing tastes over time) versus tribal distinction given the photographic trends I have encountered in my own journey through the dark. Bob Cato notes the hallmark of a post WWII scabbard is the center ridge on the scabbard. Flat panelled scabbards, by that reasoning (barring of course exceptions), would generally be pre-WWII, but then how pre-WWII would be something to judge on the look of the whole sword/scabbard, and even then its just a guess. Anyways, sometimes I wonder if we are too picky trying to classify things one way or the other.
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Old 12th April 2005, 09:26 PM   #21
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Quote:
One thing you will note, is modern Tausug barong have many of the "Samal" traits, such as the up-turned scabbard tip, rounded shoulder, etc... My own suspicion, for what its worth as an opinion of a non-expert, has been what if the style denotes age (eg. changing tastes over time) versus tribal distinction...
federico,
as it was noted above, theoretically, post 1930's (why 1930? i don't know...) barongs are so similar that it is hard to distinginguish tribal distinction. are you just talking about the tagub part then? but there has to be a point in time where each of the tribes has their own distict style in both the blade and the tagub.

Quote:
Anyways, sometimes I wonder if we are too picky trying to classify things one way or the other.
well, i guess that's part of being a collector in my case anyway. it's the curiosity in most of us to know every single detail and history of what we have on hand. in my case, if at all possible, i'd like to know the panday's name that made the barong i have. then it goes on and on... yeah, it would've been fine to know what a barong is, or what country it came from, but when someone mentioned that there are certain identifying traits as to the actual origin of this certain sword, it peaks our interests. also, i think it would be a disservice to the actual tribe that purposely left their distinct signature on something they revered so much and later on to be referred to as the other tribes' esp. in the philippines...
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Old 13th April 2005, 12:02 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spunjer
federico,
as it was noted above, theoretically, post 1930's (why 1930? i don't know...) barongs are so similar that it is hard to distinginguish tribal distinction. are you just talking about the tagub part then? but there has to be a point in time where each of the tribes has their own distict style in both the blade and the tagub.
At least to my eye, the crest of a modern barong is very similar to the "Samal" style. If you filled in all the piercing, you would essentially have the modern crest that comes from the cockatua back vs butt plane as noted in Bob's book. Also notice the rectangular beak on modern barong. Another trait in common. So more than just the tagub is in common. I have a couple of ivory barong that may be from the 30s, but hard to tell, the features are extremely similar between the two styles. Both strike me as Tausug due to the lavishness of the pieces (particularly the use of swaasa for the punto on one, typical Tausug silver braiding on both, and Tausug chase work on the other). Anyways, one reason the 30s date pops up is the Hutchings article, and as well as Kriegers work, both written late 20s early 30s. I believe its the Hutchings article (Id have to go through it again) that points out modern kris lack the separable gangya. One thing Ill note as well, I find more newer pictures (20s and 30s) in which the "Samal" style barong is seen being worn vs. older pictures. Also, the Samal style Ive encountered have had far bigger blades (approaching more modern sizes) than the "Tausug" style. Anyways if the Samal style is the Samal style, why did the Tausug drop their own style of barong and then solely take up making barong in the Samal style. Again, going back to Kiefer, the power relation doesnt make sense. Then again someone like MorningStar could shed light on the matter. Then what do we mean by Samal? If we want to sub-divide further, are we talking Balangingi Samal, Samal Bajau (well this term gets thrown out in some older books), the Jama Mapun Samal, etc... Anyways, sorry about the nonsensical order of this post, real tired and just trying to type quick before work.
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Old 13th April 2005, 10:21 AM   #23
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spunjer,


you could throw in the type of sampil fabric used in the scabbard. tho it is not available in each and every old barong...
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Old 13th April 2005, 11:07 AM   #24
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zamboanga,
glad you brought that up. could you be so kind enuff as to differentiate those? i have one and the fabric feels like felt, and it is solid red. any significance???
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Old 13th April 2005, 12:31 PM   #25
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Spunjer, I know that at one time for many tribes, the wearing of red meant that one had killed and it was a badge of honor and rank (red for blood). Later I wonder if it became more significant as a talisman.
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Old 14th April 2005, 05:18 PM   #26
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You know, another thought came into my mind (still hurts ) and that is another type of barong to consider. Ibeam and I were discussing the sipit barong that has a narrower blade profile, and the hilt comes over in an angle and is almost flat at less than a 45 degree angle. I'll post some pictures if I can. This label comes from Cecil Quirino according to Ibeam and not found in Cato's book.
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Old 14th April 2005, 10:39 PM   #27
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Hi Battara:

Look forward to seeing the pictures of a sipit barung -- don't quite follow your description of the hilt, but a picture should clear that up. Another style not found in Cato is the shandigan barung with its swollen edge, which we talked about a little bit in this thread already.

A question for the barung fans:

Do you think there is a consensus about classifying barung based on Spunjer's proposal, perhaps with some modifications, such that an essay (with illustrations) could be written and published here in the Archives? We have talked about creating additional informative pieces that could serve as references, and an update to Cato's work would be appreciated by many of us. For several years I have been hearing that Cecil Quirino is going to write a more definitive text, setting down new material and correcting inaccuracies in Cato's book, but nothing has emerged yet. Why not help educate ourselves more while we wait for Cecil's book? Just a thought.

Ian.
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Old 14th April 2005, 11:54 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ian
Hi Battara:
A question for the barung fans:

Do you think there is a consensus about classifying barung based on Spunjer's proposal, perhaps with some modifications, such that an essay (with illustrations) could be written and published here in the Archives? We have talked about creating additional informative pieces that could serve as references, and an update to Cato's work would be appreciated by many of us. For several years I have been hearing that Cecil Quirino is going to write a more definitive text, setting down new material and correcting inaccuracies in Cato's book, but nothing has emerged yet. Why not help educate ourselves more while we wait for Cecil's book? Just a thought.

Ian.
My vote has already been made (for what its worth as a mere hobbiest), note earlier posts, against separating Samal and Tausug barong by the criteria listed. Shandigan barong are described in Bob's book, but the name is not used, nor is there a picture of an example. The term really hadnt popped up into more common use til Cecil featured the name for a new barong being produced by his company just a couple years ago. There are a number of changes in later catalogs as well, eg. the use of the term kiwo instead of kalis seko to describe tausug kris, which may hint at things to come once his book is finally published.

Last edited by Federico; 15th April 2005 at 12:05 AM.
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Old 15th April 2005, 04:45 AM   #29
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Barung banditos:

I'm thinking that with some skillful wordsmithing, even widely divergent views can be syhthesized along the lines of "one school of thought has suggested ..." and "another body of opinion believes that distinguishing between the characteristics of barung among the Samal and Tausug is very difficult because of substantial overlap in styles." Seems that a scholarly approach could be crafted that would be useful to the reader as we search for more information to better define the subject matter.

I suspect that the truth lies somewhere between being able to conclusively distinguish the two forms and there being no way to distinguish between them.

Spunjer and others have spent some time trying to work this out, and they have offered some testable hypotheses. Those efforts are laudable and should not be cast aside. Can you guys get together and work on the available data -- pictures, descriptions, etc. -- to flesh out these ideas and reach some consensus? It would be great to move beyond opinion and conjecture, and understand better the areas of agreement and disagreement.

Waiting for Cecil Quirino's book is a poor reason for not trying to do something now. As far as I know, nobody has yet seen a draft of this book. Moreover, just writing a book is a substantial and time consuming undertaking, let alone getting it printed -- it is possible Cecil's book may never happen. Why not try to do something more modest with what we have here?

Ian.
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Old 15th April 2005, 09:17 AM   #30
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Ian

I would like to clarify, that I am not stating that differentions cannot be made between Tausug and Samal barungs (though what that may be I do not know), but rather using the scabbard and cockatua features listed in the initial post are not reliable in light of other evidence against. Realistically, there is only one post stating that this differention can be made, with no evidence given to support why. In light of the problems I have personally encountered (well heres the kicker this is only worth as much as you trust that my opinion is of any worth, it has already been asserted on this forum that it is in fact of no worth despite what evidence I may try to assert, so if you are in the latter camp then all I type is useless) with this typography I would like to see what evidence is in favor. Certainly Bob's book does not make this differention. Like everyone here, I would love to know every little secret about the weapons I collect that can be known, however I feel critical review is still necessary in the pursuit of knowledge. I know this is not a popular idea, but is there no standard of proof to back a claim other than the popularity of a sentiment?
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