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Old 22nd September 2020, 01:36 PM   #1
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Default Tajong or Coteng?

Typically I would look at the hilt profile here as a keris coteng. The hilt is paired with selut of horn. The blade profile and the scabbard type are typically for a keris tajong I believe. You can make out a pale line the blade's forging. There is a nice patina to both the wooden hilt and scabbard. If this is a proper keris tajong it is the smallest I have handled. I am more inclined to think it is a keris coteng.

Thanks for any insights.
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Old 28th September 2020, 06:03 PM   #2
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Charles, i am surprised you got no responses on this one yet, though i suspect that a number of keris collectors are like myself and have less knowledge of the Peninsula and Thai keris forms than they do about Jawa, Bali, Madura and Sumatra.
From what i can gather Tajong hilts have "beards" and this does not. Tajong also tend to be a bit boxier than this, so if i were forced into an opinion i would most likely go with Coteng.
This thread may add more information from better informed sources than myself.
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Old 29th September 2020, 12:08 AM   #3
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Hello Charles,

I tend to agree with David that this hilt can be classified as coteng; the small size also supports this notion. (Some Malay specialists consider coteng hilts a subgroup of tajong hilts - so, this may not necessarily exclude this hilt to be considered both... )

However, the scabbard is not typical as already noted by you. While it does resemble a tajong scabbard, it does not exhibit the correct proportions - this may be due to its small size, craftsmanship issues, etc.

The hilt is paired with selut of horn.
This is most likely a repair since the base of these hilt cracks easily under mechanical stress.

The blade profile and the scabbard type are typically for a keris tajong I believe. You can make out a pale line the blade's forging.
There is no specific blade type with keris tajong. You probably have the pandai saras blade type in mind: While this type is very common, also other quality blades were traditionally utilized (carita, etc.).

Actually, this keris is not a pandai saras blade - it's a much simpler blade and of lesser craftsmanship. I've seen several examples of this variant blade and they seem to be of generally smaller size (none paired with any coteng nor tajong hilt!) and much simpler construction.

Coteng do even come with a greater diversity of blades than tajong hilts though...

Anyway, this is an interesting piece deserving further study - thanks for showing and David for bringing it back to the top!

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