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Old 10th June 2019, 02:21 PM   #1
A. G. Maisey
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Default Majapahit Keris

One of the perennially popular topics for discussion is the Mojo Keris. I might be wrong, but over the years I have formed the opinion that everybody who collects keris wants a genuine Majapahit Keris. The Real Deal. Something that was made in the old Majapahit kingdom, during the Majapahit era.

Well for your enjoyment, herewith a photo of statue in an East Javanese museum that is located within the bounds of the old central area of Majapahit. This museum specialises in the display and preservation of Majapahit relics.

The statue was produced during the Majapahit era, in Majapahit.

There is no real agreement on who the statue represents, some authorities claim Minak Jinggo, others Garuda, or Maha Kala, or even Bhairawa. Who it might be is perhaps not really important, but if we want to get an understanding of what the keris looked like during and before the Majapahit era, this statue can demonstrate that.
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Old 10th June 2019, 04:02 PM   #2
Anthony G.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
One of the perennially popular topics for discussion is the Mojo Keris. I might be wrong, but over the years I have formed the opinion that everybody who collects keris wants a genuine Majapahit Keris. The Real Deal. Something that was made in the old Majapahit kingdom, during the Majapahit era.

Well for your enjoyment, herewith a photo of statue in an East Javanese museum that is located within the bounds of the old central area of Majapahit. This museum specialises in the display and preservation of Majapahit relics.

The statue was produced during the Majapahit era, in Majapahit.

There is no real agreement on who the statue represents, some authorities claim Minak Jinggo, others Garuda, or Maha Kala, or even Bhairawa. Who it might be is perhaps not really important, but if we want to get an understanding of what the keris looked like during and before the Majapahit era, this statue can demonstrate that.
interesting.
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Old 10th June 2019, 10:40 PM   #3
Jean
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Very interesting indeed, the kris is still in "leaf" style (short & broad), not a modern kris. From early Majapahit period?
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Old 10th June 2019, 10:55 PM   #4
A. G. Maisey
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I don't know Jean, Mojo, certainly, exactly what time, no idea.

Yes, Anthony, interesting, and it becomes even more interesting when we trace the form of the keris through bas reliefs from the Central Jawa (Early Classical) period to what we can see in the reliefs and statuary at Candi Sukuh (+/- 1437).

There is much to consider in keris development.
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Old 11th June 2019, 06:52 AM   #5
Anthony G.
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Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
I don't know Jean, Mojo, certainly, exactly what time, no idea.

Yes, Anthony, interesting, and it becomes even more interesting when we trace the form of the keris through bas reliefs from the Central Jawa (Early Classical) period to what we can see in the reliefs and statuary at Candi Sukuh (+/- 1437).

There is much to consider in keris development.

Honestly speaking, I am still confuse about how Majapahit keris looks like, till now. I always have impression it has less pamor, dark iron etc. Below link is just a sample.

https://pusakadunia.com/keris-majapa...tuah-ampuh_10/
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Old 11th June 2019, 01:41 PM   #6
A. G. Maisey
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Anthony, there is a very great difference between keris that some people might classify as Tangguh Majapahit, and the keris that evidence seems to indicate actually might have existed during the Majapahit period.

Tangguh ngak sungguh.
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Old 12th June 2019, 07:47 PM   #7
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Hello Anthony,

Quote:
Honestly speaking, I am still confuse about how Majapahit keris looks like, till now.
Most of us are wondering, I guess.

From statues and bas relief, it stands to reason that the keris buda (and possibly its ancestor, too) was at least well-known and very likely in active use by the ruling elite throughout (almost all of) the classical period. It’s the “modern“ keris which seems to make a really late appearance based on the extremely scant evidence.


Quote:
I always have impression it has less pamor, dark iron etc.
These features most commonly referred to in (pseudo) tangguh probably are mainly due to extensive erosion of the keris blade and subsequent exposure of the slorok.

As Alan already mentioned, it hasn’t been established whether blades classified as Majapahit really originate from that era. Even if partly true, each member of nobility must have hoarded thousands of keris to account for the number of examples nowadays claimed to be Mojo...

The earliest well-preserved modern keris are documented from European collections since the later 16th century. It seems quite possible that a small fraction of these may date to the late Mojo period. However, this could only be substantiated by destructive sampling and C14 analysis; any recycling of old steel might confound the results though.


Quote:
Below link is just a sample
Considering the ambiguous blumbangan, I‘d suggest that this is not the best candidate for a textbook example unless one subscribes to a very neoliberal tangguh approach...

Regards,
Kai
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Old 11th June 2019, 02:26 AM   #8
kai
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Hello Jean,

Quote:
Very interesting indeed, the kris is still in "leaf" style (short & broad), not a modern kris. From early Majapahit period?
Mojo was a fairly short period (at least compared to the whole classical period during which this development took place).

Considering the pretty scant evidence, I'd expect that this earlier style was still utilized during a notable part of the late classical period. However, even if this sculpture could be reliably dated to the late Mojo period, it might be just a reference to an already obsolete style.

Regards,
Kai
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Old 11th June 2019, 02:13 AM   #9
kai
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Hello Alan,

Quote:
I might be wrong, but over the years I have formed the opinion that everybody who collects keris wants a genuine Majapahit Keris. The Real Deal. Something that was made in the old Majapahit kingdom, during the Majapahit era.
Guilty as charged. Any example on which this stone-carving might be based would be perfectly fine with me...

Although the pommel is a bit damaged, the (reverse) grip is obviously the old style and apparently would not lend itself to any kind of pistol grip for optimized stabbing.

Regards,
Kai
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