upper view of the ivory pommel handle

Moro Kris sword from Zamboanga Peninsula - Mindanao

A nice Moro Kris sword from Zamboanga, Mindanao in the Southern Philippines circa 1900. The hilt an example of one of the more elaborate specimens, carved from a single piece of ivory, with very fine carved crest to the front, sides and back, and with a deep rich golden colour. The grip is covered with bands of engraved silver and sections of intricately plaited silver wire, some worn cord can be seen in between these bands. The blade of very good steel, the edges waved and some evidence of patterning to the central section suggesting this blade was pattern welded or 'twist-core' laminated, a sign of craftsmanship and something that produced a stronger blade. The forte/upper blade area is held to the hilt with a single silver clamp, deep fullering to both sides is typical of the kris from this region. This sword is also accompanied by its scabbard, the upper fron section mounted with a most magnificently carved panel of mother of pearl shell in two sections. A similar panel must once have been fitted to the sheath chape, now missing. The scabbard is wrapped in a more recent covering of cord, coloured red and white, with some damage/loss to the upper reverse side. Approximately 25 inches long in scabbard, the blade approximately 19 inches.   southern asia

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