A Karo Batak Kalasan
Karo Batak, Sumatra – 19th century
Materials: Horn (Bubalis armee bubalis), Steel, Wood, Silver, Suasa
The ‘Kalasan’ is a traditional sword of the Batak people on Sumatra. Another local name for this type is ‘Piso Rempu Pirak’ which means ‘knife with silver strips’. While the blades are generally always the same, flat spine and with an S- shaped cutting edge and small protrusion near the base, the hilts can vary. The most common hilt types are the ‘Hulu Peusangan’ and the ‘Sukul Jering’. Both commonly seen in the Toba and Karo regions. The example listed here is a classic type, which fits perfectly in a collection of Batak arms.
The blade of the ‘Kalasan’ is, as mentioned earlier, of typical shape. The local term for this type of blade is ‘Taka’ and has a straight spined blade with an S-shape cutting edge ending in a sharp tip. On the cutting side, a small protrusion is visible which functions as a guard for the index finger. The blades were made of local steel and were rarely imported as such compared to other types.
The scabbard is well made and bound in thin silver sheets which is preferred by the Batak tribes as we can see returning in many decorative sword sheets and even blunderbusses. It consists of two wooden sheets which perfectly follow the outlines of the blade. The scabbard mouth is flat and has a lobbed ‘suasa’ and silver sheet ending in smaller sheets towards the tip.
Condition: Very good, the base of the scabbard mouth has an old damage. The blade is slightly pitted, which is commonly seen at this quality of steel. Further good, a classic example.
Blade spine thickness: 9mm
Blade length: 43.4cm
Total length: 56.8cm
To give everybody a fair chance to be the first on new arrivals, hit the subscribe button below.