From: Java (uncertain)

Curatorial Section: Oceanian

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Native Name Kris
Object Number 42-30-372A
Current Location Collections Storage
Culture Javanese
Provenience Java (uncertain)
Section Oceanian
Materials Metal | Wood

Dagger with straight blade with median ridge both sides, widening asymmetrically at base. Faint mottled watery markings (pamor). Corner of blade base features high-relief sinuous crowned snake (naga) and branches with gold leaves and inlaid colorless stones. Guard (ganja) has meandering spiraling gold vine and, on top edge, gold leaves and 7 eight-petalled flowers inlaid with colorless stones (two now missing). Bent, faceted dark wood handle (“young shoot in tree trunk”) with two carvings on the inner side, possibly the stylized representations of masks or monster (kala) faces. Ring between blade and handle has rows of beading top and bottom and a band of large triangular teeth alternating with ten large beads inlaid with similar colorless stones. One of a class of daggers called kris, defined by the widening at one side of the blade base. Kris are not only weapons but also works of art and objects of mythical, ritual, and ceremonial significance: in 2005, UNESCO gave the title “Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity” to the kris of Indonesia.

Length 47.6 cm
Credit Line Gift of Mrs. Morgan Wing on behalf of the Estate of Florence C. Whitney, 1942
Other Number 518 - Collector Number

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