Featured Indonesian carved handle... Balinese, age?

Discussion in 'Antique Discussion' started by kyratango, Sep 18, 2020.

  1. kyratango

    kyratango Bug jewellery addiction!

    Specifically for @Any Jewelry :joyful:

    Bought in France, as an umbrella handle:bucktooth:
    11.5cm or nearly 4.5" high
    Very light weight wood.
    In shape of a Keris hilt, but I doubt it is a genuine one.

    Resized_20200918_124739_3172963095461.jpeg Resized_20200918_124757_3172759378923.jpeg Resized_20200918_124814_3219225204005.jpeg Resized_20200918_124829_3219461420967.jpeg Resized_20200918_124847_3251396063675.jpeg Resized_20200918_124911_3281841442076.jpeg
    mmarco102, Bronwen, Firemandk and 4 others like this.
  2. Any Jewelry

    Any Jewelry Well-Known Member

    Just a flash visit for my favourite French lady.:)
    Of course.:joyful:
    It is the real deal.:happy: He is probably late 19th century.
    Could be Sawo wood, which is used a lot on Madura. Sawo is lightweight and also a fairly light colour. Some Balinese hilts were carved on Madura, but used on Bali. This model is classic Balinese.
    The oval things around the base are an imitation of the stones set into silver or gold on the more expensive hilts.

    The type of hilt, figurative, is called 'Togogan'. Togogan were once reserved for the aristocracy, but most restrictions got blurred after the fall of the Balinese royalty in the early 20th century. (Complicated story to do with the invasion of Bali by the Dutch.)

    The person represented is actually my very distant relative.:playful: He is Dharmawangsa, ruler of the Javanese kingdom of Medang, and famous for having commissioned the translation of the Hindu epic Mahabharata into Javanese, so the people could understand what was actually said during those long Wayang performances. A bit like Roman Catholic mass being read in the local language instead of Latin. Except he got the idea nearly 1000 years before the RC church did.:smug:
    Dharmawangsa also invaded Bali, which brought the Javanese culture to Bali. You would think the Balinese would have had a problem with that, but they are still proud of their part-Javanese heritage today.:confused:

    Dharmawangsa has his own (short) Wiki page, where you can also read his full name. (And you will understand why I didn't write it here :jawdrop:)

    Last edited: Sep 18, 2020
  3. kyratango

    kyratango Bug jewellery addiction!

    Sri Maharaja Isyana Dharmawangsa Teguh Anantawikramottunggadewa!!!:singing::p
    He also known by his posthumous name Joe Taslim Ganteng Sanjaya:pompous:... So, from now, I'll call him Joe (very respectfully, uh):joyful:

    Thank you so much @Any Jewelry :kiss::kiss:, for all your infos, and for confirming it is a genuine hilt:woot:!
    As it doesn't seem to have ever been mounted, I wondered if it was a well carved souvenir from Bali...
    Now to find a convenient stand and a place in the cabinet :facepalm::hilarious:
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  4. Any Jewelry

    Any Jewelry Well-Known Member

    That can be very difficult to tell. You will rarely see traces of metal and hopefully never glue. Although I could tell you stories....:banghead:
    In the case of your hilt you can see pitting around the hole where a hilt ring would have been.:watching:

    This Madurese keris was kind enough to show you why you won't see traces of how it was mounted, or that it was ever mounted. The tang of the keris is wrapped with cloth, in this case black cloth and some thick cotton thread for the extra grip. The hilt is simply pushed over it.
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2020
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  5. Any Jewelry

    Any Jewelry Well-Known Member

    Forgot, this is the kind of hilt ring that would have caused that pitting around the hole of your hilt:


    A similar one in situ with some of the thread wrapping sticking out:

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  6. kyratango

    kyratango Bug jewellery addiction!

    Wow! Again, thank you for the opening to this whole world of Keris:woot:.
    Of course this kind of mounting wouldn't have hurt "Joe":)
    I forgot the fact they are ornamental and spiritual symbols rather than intended to be used as weapons:facepalm:.
    komokwa and Any Jewelry like this.
  7. Any Jewelry

    Any Jewelry Well-Known Member

    That is the way in Java and Madura, where the spiritual aspect is the most important and the keris was generally only used as a last resort protective weapon.
    The Balinese were always more 'martial' (not martian :p), and their keris were also used as a regular weapon as well as status and spirituality. But given Joe's age, it is very likely that he was only used for status and spiritual significance.:)

    I have very few Balinese keris because of that different view of the purpose of the keris. The same goes for keris from the other keris regions. I have a few from those regions, but nearly all are women's keris. The detail I posted above, the 'white keris' is also a woman's keris. The white is wood, btw, not ivory or bone.
    Modest Muse, komokwa and kyratango like this.
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