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Old 24th April 2009, 12:12 PM   #1
Albert
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Post Review 'The Javanese Kris'

Dr. I. Groneman's The Javanese Kris reviewed by Albert G. van Zonneveld.

288 pp.; 300 colour and b/w illustrations, 15 b/w field photographs. Cloth in dust jacket. Leiden: C. Zwartenkot Art Books & KITLV Press, 2009. Price: 75,00 euro.

The Javanese Kris is the first complete English translation of Der Kris der Javaner. Isańc Groneman published this penetrating study in the authoritative periodical Internationales Archiv fŘr Ethnographie between 1910 and 1913.

The English translations of his articles titled 'Pure nickel as pamor' and 'The Njirami, or the annual Purification of Hereditary Weapons and other Pusakas in Central Java' have been added to The Javanese Kris.

In his pioneering research Groneman painstakingly, step for step, describes how the blacksmith (empu) Karja di Krama forged five krisses with the archetype pamor patterns: wos wutah, blaraq ngirid, sekar pala, sekar ngadeg and sekar temu. He also reports at great length on the blacksmith?s workshop, on the tools applied when producing krisses and on forging experiments whereby, for instance, bicycle metal that contains nickel replaces the traditional iron extracted from a meteoric that fell to earth near candi Prambanan at the end of the eighteenth century.

Moreover, Groneman pays extensive attention to the many shapes (dapur) of the straight and waved kris blades, shapes of kris hilts, kris sheaths etc. He furthermore provides us with a theoretical account dealing with the kris as a historical and cultural phenomenon including the categories of kris types introduced in N. L. Winter's publication written in Javanese (1871) and a list of 118 types of shapes presented in a manuscript kept at the kraton of Yogyakarta.

Isańc Groneman delivered a leading study on the Javanese kris. Anno 2009, a hundred years later, the significance of his work remains unchallenged.

In The Javanese Kris an abundance of information and illustrations have been added to the original text.
Firstly, a preface and an extensive introduction by David van Duuren. In it he discusses Isańc Groneman's tireless efforts aimed at preserving the art of pamor forging that was slowly but surely disappearing at the start of the twentieth century.
Secondly, as many as 140 excellent photographs show krisses, kris hilts and kris boards originating from the collections of the three largest ethnographic museums and from private collectors in The Netherlands.

The Javanese Kris counts 50 watercolours presenting more than 100 types of kris shapes and b/w line drawings depicting more than 80 types of kris shapes. These illustrations date from 1840, 1850, 1858 and 1920 are published for the first time.

To summarize, The Javanese Kris is an excellent publication, very detailed and extremely exploratory. Its contents includes state-of-the-art photographs and comes with an appropriate lay out. A kris collector cannot do without this reference work which also appeals greatly to all other aficionados of Indonesian art. This book is indeed a pleasure to the eye and thus inviting to be leafed through regularly. Highly recommended!
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Last edited by Albert; 24th April 2009 at 12:58 PM.
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Old 24th April 2009, 11:08 PM   #2
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The book is very nice with very nice keris and VERY VERY VERY VERY NICE hits (the best i never seen together Jensen' Krisdisc and Kerner's work).
If the photos of keris was been more big (the same of JAWA KERIS) the book would be n░ 1 .
Of course this is my opinion (sorry for my english)
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Old 10th June 2009, 12:06 PM   #3
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Here a preview of the book.

http://www.kitlv.nl/pdf_documents/asia-javkris.pdf

regards Michel
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Old 10th June 2009, 04:37 PM   #4
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Apparently this book will be available from Amazon starting July 15, but according to their listing it is only 272 pages. Does anyone know if this is a misprint or if this edition will really be 16 pages shorter. It would be good to know it's just an error because at $77 USD and free shipping this is quite a savings over getting it from Europe and paying the additional shipping.
http://www.amazon.com/Javanese-Kris-...4647690&sr=1-1
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Old 10th June 2009, 04:46 PM   #5
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Well, the front is different for starters.
And less pages... maybe less pictures, that would save some money.
The price is really low compared to Eur 75 here in Europe.

Maybe Arjan / Mandaukudi knows. He has Groneman in his bookshop.
(together with an enormous bunch of other nice and very nice upto mega nice books
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Old 10th June 2009, 06:29 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asomotif
Well, the front is different for starters.
And less pages... maybe less pictures, that would save some money.
The price is really low compared to Eur 75 here in Europe.

Maybe Arjan / Mandaukudi knows. He has Groneman in his bookshop.
(together with an enormous bunch of other nice and very nice upto mega nice books
Hi Willem,

Thanks for the compliment.

About Gronemann , I will contact the publisher about it. I think they will indeed make a USA edition what has some less pictures than the original edition. The edition should be limited to 500 copies to the information I have recieved from the publisher.( I also noted one large bookstore was out of stock) Also the rigths on the photo's are calculated on 500 editions. I can imagine that they have dropped a few pics to keep the book below the price of 90 dollar printing extra editions for the USA market.

But as I already said I will check if this is correct,

friendly regards,

Arjan.
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Old 10th June 2009, 11:10 PM   #7
kulbuntet
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asomotif
Well, the front is different for starters.
And less pages... maybe less pictures, that would save some money.
The price is really low compared to Eur 75 here in Europe.

Maybe Arjan / Mandaukudi knows. He has Groneman in his bookshop.
(together with an enormous bunch of other nice and very nice upto mega nice books
Hi Willem,

As far as i know the book here in holland is 65 euro, 68,50 at a wel known Keris /Antique shop.

Regards Michel
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Old 11th June 2009, 12:27 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kulbuntet
Hi Willem,

As far as i know the book here in holland is 65 euro, 68,50 at a wel known Keris /Antique shop.

Regards Michel
The official marketprice set by the publisher is eur 75.
So than they are giving in on their own margin.
With a limited (500 pcs) edition of a rare book (that is sure to become a collectors item) that is a pretty weird action.
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Old 11th June 2009, 01:48 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asomotif
The official marketprice set by the publisher is eur 75.
With a limited (500 pcs) edition of a rare book (that is sure to become a collectors item)
I've got mine from 'De Verre Volken' a bookstore inside the National Museum of Ethnology at Leiden. Cost more for shipping, but then again, the book is a collectors' item, to me anyway. Worth every cent I paid at Euro 75, and at 288 printed pages.
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Old 11th June 2009, 08:56 AM   #10
Mytribalworld
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Default Will not be available at amazon

Quote:
Originally Posted by mandaukudi
Hi Willem,

Thanks for the compliment.

About Gronemann , I will contact the publisher about it. I think they will indeed make a USA edition what has some less pictures than the original edition. The edition should be limited to 500 copies to the information I have recieved from the publisher.( I also noted one large bookstore was out of stock) Also the rigths on the photo's are calculated on 500 editions. I can imagine that they have dropped a few pics to keep the book below the price of 90 dollar printing extra editions for the USA market.

But as I already said I will check if this is correct,

friendly regards,

Arjan.
Hi everyone,

Just called the original publisher about it.
He will certainly not sell the book to amazon.

He also doesn't know how Amazon got the incorrect info.
The cover they use is actually one of the first pre-published design covers.
Also thenumber of pagess is indeed not correct.

So the book is still only available in the Netherlands in the better bookshop.

The book is indeed a high price but I have still not heared any buyer who said"" The book isn't worth it" evrone is very glad with it.
Its surely not a normal kerisbook like so many dive up frequently.
To compensate the shippingcosts I can offer a free shipping for 5 copies to the USA. I can send them as cluster pack.
So is you can find 4 other collectors who join in in the USA it may help.
friendly regards,

Arjan.
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Old 11th June 2009, 04:07 PM   #11
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That is a handsome offer Arjan !
Please put up a post for signing up in Swap .
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Old 11th June 2009, 05:24 PM   #12
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Hi All,

The price of 65 euro is at kadoshop wolters... sold by them on marktplaats.nl

I can post a link to their add.. but i dont.. last time i did a link post to a item being sold..... i got a ban for a week... so figure this one out your selfs guys..
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Old 18th June 2009, 12:15 PM   #13
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A lot is said about prices and shipping, but not much about the book itself. I am very curious what other collectors think of the contents of 'The Javanese Kris'. Look forward to more opinions.

Albert
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Old 18th June 2009, 02:55 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Albert
A lot is said about prices and shipping, but not much about the book itself. I am very curious what other collectors think of the contents of 'The Javanese Kris'. Look forward to more opinions.

Albert
Probably because alot of us are still trying to figure out where to find this book and how to get it shipped so that it is affordable for us. I am sure that more actual reviews will come once people actually have it in their possession to read.
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Old 19th June 2009, 12:22 AM   #15
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I found the original German version at Eur 1250,-

Now that is expensive, and difficult to read for a lot of us...
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Old 19th June 2009, 02:16 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asomotif
I found the original German version at Eur 1250,-

Now that is expensive, and difficult to read for a lot of us...
Ouch! Well i suppose i could bone up on my high school German....and clear out my bank account.
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Old 19th June 2009, 01:34 PM   #17
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Took some time to find a seller offering the antique version.

On Google all you find now is the english version.
Meanwhile I bought it from our fellow forumite with the nice "mytribal" bookshop.

It really is a nice executed book. Fabulous pictures of very old original items from old collections.

I will try to do some reading this weekend
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Old 19th June 2009, 09:01 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kulbuntet
Hi All,

The price of 65 euro is at kadoshop wolters... sold by them on marktplaats.nl

I can post a link to their add.. but i dont.. last time i did a link post to a item being sold..... i got a ban for a week... so figure this one out your selfs guys..
Just banned for a week???? Lucky you!
In a "kadoshop" I only buy a vase for my wife at mothersday. Tribal art books I buy from Arjan!
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Old 6th July 2009, 01:51 PM   #19
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This thread has been re-opened for further discussion of *the book* ; not where to buy it .

I have received my copy and am in the reading process .

More later ..
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Old 6th July 2009, 09:37 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick
I have received my copy and am in the reading process .
OTW, and not yet received the copy of this English translation from the original German book. But I have the "Indonesian Version" (translated from the German Version, by Stanley Hendrawidjaja, Dipl Ing a German university alumnus). So, just Indonesian translation and with minimal illustrations quoted from the original book.

This is of course a much quoted book by such other keris books as Garrett & Bronwen Solyom (The World of the Javanese Kris), Dr WH Rassers (On the Javanese Kris), Wolfgang Spielmann (Der Javanische Keris), Ing GJFJ Tammens (De Kris, Magic Relic of Old Indonesia) et cetera...

Written in the "rich period" of javanese kingdoms of Yogyakarta Sultanate (during Hamengku Buwana VII who reigned 1877-1921) and Solo or Surakarta Sunanate (during Paku Buwana X who reigned 1893-1939). And Dr Isaac Groneman himself was living from 1832-1912... He was working as a professional doctor at Yogyakarta karaton (palace), and was married to grand grand grand daughter of Hamengku Buwana I -- the founder of Yogyakarta after "palihan nagari" (the division of Mataram since 1755). Spent his last days in this beloved world in the Netherland, and had written some books, including periodical writings in Internationales Archiv fur Etnographie...

This book is regarded so important by keris people, because this is not only a "solo centris" keris book, but I think quite both sides of the two mainstreams in Javanese keris world: Yogyakarta and Surakarta. (He quoted the Solo version of types of keris which was written in 1871 (in javanese language) by FL Winter "Serat Bab Pratelanipun Dapur Duwung mawi Kawujudan Gambar 51" (Notes on Keris' Dapurs with 51 pictures), but also quoted 118 types of dapur keris manuscript owned and kept by karaton of Yogyakarta.

Mr Groneman was lucky to have opportunity to observe from beginning to end of the traditional process of making 5 (five) kerises which was commissioned by Regierungsrat Franz Heger from Austria in the besalen of Pura Pakualaman (a Yogyakarta Principality which has both styles in keris, combination of Solonese and Yogyakartan style).

Groneman said, that the five choice of pamors for the five kerises, were: (1) wos wutah, (2) blaraq ngirid, (3) sekar pala, (4) sekar ngadeg, and (5) sekar temu... And some of the pamor materials were of "meteorite pamor of Prambanan" (which once fell at the area of/near Prambanan temple)...

The works of the kerises were made by a "pande keris" (an empu) in Pakualaman Principality, named Ngabehi Karyadikrama who was assisted by three panjaqs (keris maker assistants) and one niece of him. The process of the traditional keris making in Pakualaman was including the "sajen" (offerings)rituals. Groneman wrote the process in a very descriptive details of keris making's aspects.

Of course, this is a book of good reference for every Keris' connoisseur...

GANJAWULUNG

Last edited by ganjawulung; 7th July 2009 at 03:25 AM.
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