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Dagger

Native NameKris
Object Number:42-30-438A
Current Location: Collections Storage
Culture:Javanese
Provenience: Java
Section:Oceanian
Materials:Metal
Ivory
Length: 47 cm
Credit Line:Gift of Mrs. Morgan Wing on behalf of the Estate of Florence C. Whitney, 1942
Other Number:541 - Other Number

Description

Dagger with wavy blade (3 shallow curves), widening asymmetrically at base. Raised median ridge both sides. Flanking the ridge, bands of gold leafy vines. The bent, honey-colored ivory handle is densely and deeply carved as a stylized figure, covered with curled tendrils: possibly a stylized demon (raksasa). A zig-zag band around the top may represent the points of a crown. The metal ring and cup between the blade and the handle are decorated with rows of tiny balls and a band of curling vines. One of a class of daggers called kris, defined by the widening at one side of the blade base. A similar hilt is illustrated in "Kris Hilts: Masterpieces of South-East Asian Art," with the comment: "Some experts believe this hilt to come from north-eastern Sumatra." 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.

Bibliography:

[Book] Groneman, Isaac. 2009. The Javanese Kris.. C. Zwartenkot Art Books - Leiden and KITLV Press. Type Citation : Page/Fig./Plate: p. 192, Inv. Nr. 162View Objects related to this Type Citation

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