A Silver clad Pedang
The Indonesian ‘Pedang’ or ‘Pedang Bentok’ are often attributed to Sumatra or Lombok. While many were collected in Java and even Bali, It’s true origin is still undiscovered. What we do know is that these swords are often made of the finest quality of silverwork combined with well made traditional blades. Our example here features both of those qualities, which makes it one of the finest examples in its kind.
Indonesia, Late 19th to early 20th century.
Materials: Wood,Iron, Steel, Silver
The pedang is commonly seen in most parts of Indonesia, excluding Borneo. The curved blade is locally called ‘Pedang Bentok’ which means ‘curved sword’. As mentioned, they are often attributed to Sumatra or Lombok. This example has some interesting features which can explain a mixture of both.
Carved of wood, a stylistically version of the so-called ‘Hulu Iku Ite’ a form which is mainly found in the Aceh region of Sumatra, but stylistically also on ‘Penai’ swords of the Toraja in Celebes. The handle is made of fine repousse silver with complicated floral designs and a smooth silver ferrule.
A well made Lombok style blade with long forte and double fuller. A fine smooth pamor forging construction which is well visible. The sharp cutting edge starts where the forte ends and runs down towards the tip.
Exquisitely made, in style of the silver workshops in Yogya, who had their high tides during the early 20th century. The construction and quality of this scabbard points us to this period, circa 1900-1920. A comparable quality of silver was also made in Riau, Sumatra. The scabbard consists of two wooden sheets entirely covered with repousse silver. Fitting perfectly to the blade.
Condition: Excellent condition, well visible blade with a fine pamor motif. Good condition silver parts on scabbard and hilt.
Blade spine thickness: 8mm
Total length: 82cm
Sources: A. Zonneveld’s ‘Traditional Weapons of the Indonesian Archipelago’ p.102
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