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Old 19th September 2015, 09:45 PM   #1
Sajen
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Default Wedung for sharing

Just have won a wedung, something what was already long on my wish list. Wedungs are only worn in the courts of Central Java and it seems nearby that a blade with gold belong to a high ranking person. The german auction house stated that this piece was collected in the 30s/40s last century and coming from a german collection where it was from this date. It is 41 cm long. Will post better pictures soon as I have it in my hands.
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Old 19th September 2015, 09:49 PM   #2
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Congratulations Detlef. I think these are exquisite knives, and the craftsmanship is of the highest quality. This one seems to have had a gold wash, with much of it gone in the past.

How old do you think it may be?

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Old 19th September 2015, 10:09 PM   #3
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Thank you Ian. Age is difficult to say but my guess would be 19th century, maybe Alan will be able to shed some light on the age of it. When I am not comletely wrong is this one from Jogjakarta.

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Detlef
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Old 19th September 2015, 10:52 PM   #4
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Nice wedung, but it does require some TLC to make it presentable.

Yes, I believe we're looking at 19th century, maybe late 18th, all the wedungs of comparable style to this one, that I have seen, have been Surakarta.
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Old 20th September 2015, 12:27 AM   #5
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I agree with Alan in that this one needs a bit of TLC, but it seems fairly complete and i'm sure you have the touch Detlef.
I would like to eventual add one of these to my collection...
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Old 20th September 2015, 01:32 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
Nice wedung, but it does require some TLC to make it presentable.

Yes, I believe we're looking at 19th century, maybe late 18th, all the wedungs of comparable style to this one, that I have seen, have been Surakarta.
Thank you Alan for confirming my age guess and also for correcting me about the origin. Be sure that it will receive the degree of attention it has missed for a long time.

Regards,
Detlef

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Old 20th September 2015, 01:34 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David
I agree with Alan in that this one needs a bit of TLC, but it seems fairly complete and i'm sure you have the touch Detlef.
I would like to eventual add one of these to my collection...
Thank you David for your kind words and good luck by the hunting.

Regards,
Detlef
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Old 20th September 2015, 09:07 AM   #8
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Detlef, my comment on origin is simply that, it is not a correction. Quite frankly I don't know where this wedung was made, but I have seen several similar, and those ones were Surakarta, so this one might be Surakarta, or it might be Jogjakarta, or it might be somewhere else.

My comment on age is only a general opinion, I cannot support this comment.
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Old 20th September 2015, 09:34 AM   #9
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Alan, noted like this before already, maybe I have expressed myself somewhat unfortunate. One other question, do you have an explanation for the drop like ornamentation on the scabbard? I have seen this on an other wedung scabbard before.

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Detlef
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Old 20th September 2015, 01:51 PM   #10
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No Detlef, I do not.
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Old 20th September 2015, 08:40 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
No Detlef, I do not.
Thank you anyway Alan.
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Old 14th May 2022, 06:21 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sajen View Post
One other question, do you have an explanation for the drop like ornamentation on the scabbard? I have seen this on an other wedung scabbard before.
I am reviving this old thread because i accidentally stumbled upon some information that i don't believe has been stated here before. The question surrounding the ornamentation on this sheath has been brought up a few times, but never answered. But i did just come across the name for this motif that is found on many wedhung sheaths. Solyom calls this leaf-shaped feature "kudup turi" The "d" has a dot underneath which as i understand it has since been done away with in Javanese transcription, but indicates a "dh". So perhaps this should be written as "kudhup turi" today.
Anyway, while this doesn't actually solve the mystery, the name could be a possible clue to do so.
Alan, does this help your understanding of this motifs meaning, function or purpose any?
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Old 14th May 2022, 09:43 PM   #13
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Hello David,

Thank you for bringing up this old thread again.

Yes, we need to call Alan! In Bahasa Indonesia the translation is "to doze off", no really sense IMVHO!

Regards,
Detlef
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Old 15th May 2022, 08:23 AM   #14
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Detlef, I do not know "kudhup" in BI, neither does Mr Echols nor his mate Mr Shadily. Echols & Shadily has been the recognised BI/English & English/BI dictionary for 60 years.

I know the word "turi" & that is the same in both BI & in Modern Javanese, it is a little tree with pretty pink & white flowers. In fact the shape of the bud of the turi flower is shaped much like this motif on the scabbard.

I know the word "khudup" in Javanese, it means a flower bud... my knowledge of Javanese has improved a bit since 2015.

So "khudup turi" means "bud of the turi flower".

I do not know the symbolic intent of this motif, or if indeed there is one. However, one of the names of the turi flower is Agastya and in ancient India it was considered a sacred flower, Agastya was a respected rishi, or sage.

We eat the young buds raw and the flowers are eaten with pecel (peanut sauce), this turi flower supposedly has some medicinal qualities but I do not know what these are.

One idea that occurs to me about this motif is that it might perhaps symbolise the hierarchical position of the wearer, in that it seems to only appear on princely wedung scabbards and princes are in the position of waiting for somebody to die so that they can blossom into their full potential role. Just an idea, I have never heard this, but it is representative of Javanese thought.

I have never owned nor had the opportunity to purchase a wedung that bore this motif on the scabbard, and I have had and now do have a few old ones, good ones, and ones that were the prerogative of princes. The wedungs I have seen photos of that have this motif on the scabbard all have the appearance of 19th century, perhaps this was a style that was in vogue at some point during the 19th century only.

I have run the phrase "kudhup turi" past a couple of native speakers neither of them can relate anything that might sound like "khudup turi" to the idea of dozing off.

EDIT

I thought I had something in my files about the turi flower, I did have:- the flower is associated with Siwa (Shiva), it is sacred to him, and it is symbolic of the creation of new life, as it represents both the male and female sexual organs.

Last edited by A. G. Maisey; 15th May 2022 at 09:03 AM. Reason: addition
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Old 15th May 2022, 01:25 PM   #15
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In an attempt to try to find some Javanese symbolism attached to the turi blossom I asked Dr. Google some pointed questions. I was not successful in finding anything really specific, and I only turned to the Good Doctor after I had already exhausted my own resources. However, in searching I did find a pretty interesting page that deals with the turi tree.

I had never imagined it was such a wonderful tree. Yes, the flowers are pretty tasty along with pecel, but this tree is a real treasure chest.

Try this for size:-

https://www.bimbima.com/ayurveda/med...ora-tree/1248/
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Old 19th May 2022, 09:51 AM   #16
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Default Kudup Turi

Turi putih is a song that written by Sunan Giri (one of the Wali sanga/Wali songo/Wali Sangha). Sunan Giri was born in Blambangan/Banyuwangi in 1442. In this song, turi putih (white turi flower, there is red turi) has meaning as a shroud. All in all, the philosophical meaning of this song is about life, death, and what we brought to the life after death. I guess the previous owner of the wedung was influenced by this song.
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Old 19th May 2022, 12:36 PM   #17
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The wedung is worn by certain high ranking members of a kraton hierarchy, in this case the Surakarta Karaton, as a symbol of the wearer's willingness to cut a path through the jungle for his lord, Sinuhun, the Pakubuwono. It is a symbolic tool, it is not a weapon.
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Old 20th May 2022, 04:21 AM   #18
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We, the Javanese, pronounce kudup as the pronounciation of "d" in "do" instead of "d" in "doubt", so it should be written as "kudup"
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I am reviving this old thread because i accidentally stumbled upon some information that i don't believe has been stated here before. The question surrounding the ornamentation on this sheath has been brought up a few times, but never answered. But i did just come across the name for this motif that is found on many wedhung sheaths. Solyom calls this leaf-shaped feature "kudup turi" The "d" has a dot underneath which as i understand it has since been done away with in Javanese transcription, but indicates a "dh". So perhaps this should be written as "kudhup turi" today.
Anyway, while this doesn't actually solve the mystery, the name could be a possible clue to do so.
Alan, does this help your understanding of this motifs meaning, function or purpose any?
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Old 20th May 2022, 04:37 AM   #19
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The song maybe has similar meaning to our saying: harimau mati meninggalkan belang, gajah mati meninggalkan gading, manusia mati meninggalkan nama" (tiger dies leaving the stripes, elephant dies leaving the tusks, human dies leaving the name). Be good, do the right things, then you will be remembered as a good man
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Turi putih is a song that written by Sunan Giri (one of the Wali sanga/Wali songo/Wali Sangha). Sunan Giri was born in Blambangan/Banyuwangi in 1442. In this song, turi putih (white turi flower, there is red turi) has meaning as a shroud. All in all, the philosophical meaning of this song is about life, death, and what we brought to the life after death. I guess the previous owner of the wedung was influenced by this song.
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Old 20th May 2022, 06:31 AM   #20
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Regarding spellings of Javanese words.

I am not Javanese, however, I do have a a 70 year association with Javanese culture & society, the last 50 or so years of that 70 years has been close up & personal, one might say very personal.

When it comes to the spelling of words in any language, this can depend upon the framework within which one is working. This is very evident in English and it is also evident in Javanese, the conventions that we use in spelling might be related to the particular geographic area in which we are located, or the particular level of society in which we need to function.

As for pronunciation, this varies widely across any body of people who use the (supposedly) same language. Many Americans find a great deal of difficulty in understanding my spoken word. Why? Because I have a particularly broad Australian rural accent.

The same is true of the use of the Javanese language, the accent that applies in various parts of Jawa differs & can cause confusion. For example, I know of an example of a woman, a highly educated woman, who moved from Malang in East Jawa to Solo in Central Jawa and initially she had more than a little difficulty in getting her household employees to understand her.

There is a particular difficulty with the Javanese language in that linguists regard it as a non-standard language. Native speakers of Javanese in colloquial speech will change the shape of a word to fit better with the words around it, they do this to make the sound of the spoken passage more pleasant to the ear, or for some other social reason, similarly both vowels & consonants can be changed, provided the intended message is grasped by the listener.

Of course, I am talking about the use of Ngoko here, the same thing does not --- as far as I am aware --- occur in the use Krama Madya, Krama, or Krama Inggil. These are formal languages, Ngoko is colloquial.

So, it is really quite difficult for us to determine what is correct and what is not correct when it comes to the use of the Javanese language in other than a formal setting.

My profession calls for a high degree of accuracy when using the written word. Professionally much of what I have written over the years has finished up in a court room setting, and in this type of situation there is not much wriggle room. In so far as is possible we need to be correct. Thus, I have developed the habit of routine checking of meanings and variants on pronunciations, in order not to err too badly in what I produce for a formal presentation.

Because i am not a native speaker of either Basa Jawa or of Bahasa Indonesia, I often do the same with these languages.

Now, if I look at the word "kudhup" in "Kamus Basa Jawa", Tim Penyusun Balai Bahasa Yogyakarta, I find that this authority does indeed use the inclusive "h" spelling.

As do Robson & Wibisono, and as does Purwadi.

The aspirated "h" does not seem to exist as a common form preceded by "d' in BI, so people who commonly use BI as a means of communication rather than Basa Jawa do seem to adopt a BI form of pronunciation when speaking Javanese. However, at least in Central Jawa, the "d" sound and the "dh" sound is quite distinct.

All this is actually getting a bit too pedantic, there can be wide variation in pronunciations amongst individuals even, however, the fact remains that at least three lexicons all agree on the spelling of "khudup".

How it might be pronounced, well that depends upon the individual and the circumstance.
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Old 20th May 2022, 10:18 AM   #21
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Default Djawi-Indonesia

I have been trying to upload two pictures, first is the cover of Djawi-Indonesia written by W.J.S. Poerwadarminta (Bale Poestaka, Djakarta, 1948, i am lucky to have it, a rare book). Second is the page where koedoep (modern writing will be kudup). Unfortunately, it said i am not allowed to upload pictures.
Koedoep-kudup => in this old dictionary said as koentoem (kuntum), kuntum is a nearly blooming flower.
I could categorised myself as a group of rare Javanese that is able to speak in ngoko, madya and krama in the recent days, when so many of us at the moment could not write properly for Jawa, most of us will write Jowo.
Pronunciation is hard in Javanese language and also many Javanese in the recent day will found hard to pronounce correctly for their own language.
W.J.S Poerwadarminta was a lexicographer, i could say he was one of the founding fathers of Indonesian language.
But i totally agree with you A.G. Maisey on the evolution of languages.
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Old 20th May 2022, 02:10 PM   #22
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The function of language is to move the thoughts that are in one person's head into the head of another person, the way the words used to do that are spelt is not particularly important, nor is the way they are pronounced, but when social conventions come into play the pronunciation used and the spelling used does carry a message that places the user of that language into a particular social category.

Spellings used to represent words vary from place to place, and from time to time, and these spellings can tell us something about the writer.

Pronunciations used can vary, and these pronunciations and inflections can tell us a lot about the speaker.

However, when we need to set a formal convention for the spelling, or the pronunciation of a particular word, we need to accept a recognised authority. Very often legal documents and legislation will contain a list of words used in the document or legislation that clarifies both the correct contextual spelling and its intended interpretation in that piece of writing.

In a less formal setting one particular dictionary above all others will be accepted as the authority, so it is that we have dictionaries that are regarded as the referee in the use of language within particular professions, such as medicine & law.

In a less specific application of determination we can have one or more dictionaries that will be accepted as the authority in a language in a particular country. My preferred dictionary in English is the Oxford on Historical Principles. The convention of correctness can be determined in other English speaking countries by other dictionaries. The important thing is that whatever dictionary is in general use as the referee, the people who need these determinations should agree to accept the determinations of that dictionary.

Now, authoritative dictionaries are under continuous review, and that review has the objective of ensuring that both meanings & spellings within the dictionary do in fact reflect the usage within the populace that the dictionary is intended to serve.A living language is not set in stone, if languages fail to reflect the common usage of a community they invariably die.

I have been advised that "Kamus Basa Jawa", Tim Penyusun Balai Bahasa Yogyakarta, is about as authoritative in respect of the Javanese Language, as I am likely to find.My advice came from a couple of Javanese academics, one whose area of expertise was law, the other was a department head of economics.

When I stay in Jawa for extended periods I live just outside of Solo in what we might think of as a grass roots community. During the 1990's there was a lady who was one of my neighbours and who taught children the correct use of Basa Jawa. She was in her sixties, originally came from the area of Pacitan. She was unable to read and unable to write, she could not even sign her own name, only make a mark, but this lady was highly respected for her ability to speak elegant Basa Jawa, Madyo, Kromo, Kromo Inggil, and I was told several other levels of language that were used within the kraton.

So, when is spelling of a word important? I would suggest that the spelling really does matter when it fails to convey the intended meaning.

In the case of David's use of the word "kudhup", he was using a Javanese word in English text, I doubt that there was any failure to convey meaning, simply because the word would have been a mystery to most people who read it, in this context it was just a name.

In any case, the spelling he used is endorsed by what I believe to be a respected Javanese dictionary that does reflect current usage within the Javanese community.

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Old 21st May 2022, 05:10 PM   #23
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Quote:
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Turi putih is a song that written by Sunan Giri (one of the Wali sanga/Wali songo/Wali Sangha). Sunan Giri was born in Blambangan/Banyuwangi in 1442. In this song, turi putih (white turi flower, there is red turi) has meaning as a shroud. All in all, the philosophical meaning of this song is about life, death, and what we brought to the life after death. I guess the previous owner of the wedung was influenced by this song.
This symbol on this particular wedhung sheath is not a one-off. It can be found again and again on numerous different examples of court wedhung. So this is certainly not the case of a single individual being influenced a this song and deciding he would place one on his own.There is obviously more to it that that.
To be clear, the spelling is not mine, but appears in The Javanese Keris by Garrett Solyom and Bronwen Solyom. There it is written as i originally wrote, as "kuḍup", but with a dot underneath the first "ḍ". When i researched this character with the dot underneath as it applies to the Javanese language i found that this dot is no longer used when transcribing the language and is now written "dh".
"This was used in a former transcription of Javanese, but has been replaced by ⟨dh⟩."
I just want to be clear that NONE of this is MY usage of the word, simply what i discovered in the writing of others. Alan, i have seen you state that the book by the Solyoms is perhaps the only book on keris that does not have any false information so i was hoping this name they attached to this motive found on numerous wedhung was not the exception and that it could possibly lead us to an answer or at least some theories as to the significance of the symbol. Alan, you certainly suggested a couple of possibilities.
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Old 21st May 2022, 08:43 PM   #24
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David, Garret's mentor was Go Tik Swan, AKA Panembahan Hardjonegoro(alm.), his principal teacher was a m'ranggi known as "Pak Bei". The period was late 1960's, through to early 1970's.

Nothing in the book authored by Garrett & Bronwen can be considered to be incorrect. There are things in it that are open to disagreement, but this does not mean they are wrong, simply that different people often go to different schools.

As for the symbolism that might be attached to this turi bud, I do not know.
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Old 21st May 2022, 09:23 PM   #25
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Thanks Alan. As can sometimes be the case, knowing the name of something can sometimes help us understand the thing itself. Up until now no one seemed to know this name in this group (or anything about the meaning of this motif). Now we know the name, but still not the meaning. But perhaps we may be one step closer now.
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Old 22nd May 2022, 08:15 AM   #26
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Quote:
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Thanks Alan. As can sometimes be the case, knowing the name of something can sometimes help us understand the thing itself. Up until now no one seemed to know this name in this group (or anything about the meaning of this motif). Now we know the name, but still not the meaning. But perhaps we may be one step closer now.
Agree complete with you David!
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Old 22nd May 2022, 09:52 AM   #27
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If we ever do get the real guts on the reason or symbolism that is attached to this turi bud, I'd put money on it that we eventually find that there is more than a single reason, and more than one way to understand the symbolism.
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Old 23rd May 2022, 04:08 PM   #28
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If we ever do get the real guts on the reason or symbolism that is attached to this turi bud, I'd put money on it that we eventually find that there is more than a single reason, and more than one way to understand the symbolism.
Yes, seems to be the case with ALL things Javanese.
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