A fine Javanese 19th century Wendung.

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A fine Javanese 19th century Wendung.

Asal (origin): Yogyakarta

Especially opulent example of a ceremonial and ornamental knife, also called ‘Wedung’. With large, single-edged blade and pamor steel, forged with the utmost care from many different layers of iron (pattern type: ‘Vage Beras Wutah’). The large lower end of the blade, shaped in waves, grooves and volutes is covered in gold leaf. Similarly, the first half of the pentagonal hilt is covered with a relatively thick layer of gold all around. The edge of the gold application is decorated with a narrow engraved ornamental band and with a leaf pattern in relief on the underside near the blade. The other, external half of hilt, with slanted white, light and dark brown stripes is made of the hard material of an Sumatran elephant’s molar cut in a pentagonal shape. The sheath of the ‘Wedung’ is made of fine Trembalo wood and is covered in four double, golden bands.

The external side of the elegant sheath is decorated with an emblem in ‘mirabotta shape’, with blossoms and leafy tendrils. This emblem is made of gilt silver. A long, flexible hanger made of light-coloured horn is attached to the inside of the sheath by means of the golden bindings. It is used for lodging the ‘Wendung’ in the belt of a ceremonial sarong.

Overall, the present ‘Wedung’ is an especially valuable, opulent object that was reserved only for highest aristocratic circles of Java. This piece is preserved in excellent original condition.

Length of the blade, including the hilt (Urikan): 31.8 cm.  (1x)

Note1: Wedung is the name of a sub-district of Demak, North of Java, it is possible this Parang originated from this region. With its cleaver shape, it symbolizes the submission of the owner and his readiness to cut the jungle to pave the way to his sultan. The court etiquette requires the noble to wear a Keris in the back and a Wedung on the front. Wedung with pamor are said to be restricted to princes.

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