Δευτέρα 6 Αυγούστου 2018

Silat Bladed Weapons

Parang / Golok: A chopper or cleaver which, like a machete, is used to cut through overgrowth. They may be curved or straight and range in size from small handheld knives to the length of a sword. Because they are so widely available, parang are one of the most popular weapons in silat. A variant of the parang is the golok, which is one of the main weapons in West Javanese styles. The golok blade is heaviest in the center and ranges in length from 10 to 20 inches. The parang is a type of machete or cleaver used across the Malay archipelago. Typical vegetation in South East Asia is more woody than in South America and the parang is therefore optimized for a stronger chopping action with a heavier blade and a "sweet spot" further forward of the handle; the blade is also beveled more obtusely to prevent it from binding in the cut. This is the same rationale and (in practical terms) the same design as the Indonesian golok and very similar to the Filipino bolo. The parang blade ranges from 10 to 36 inches in length. The parang has a weight of up to 2 lb and the edge usually uses a convex grind. The parang has three different edges: the front is very sharp and used for skinning, the middle is wider and used for chopping, and the back end (near the handle) is very fine and used for carving. A parang handle is normally made out of wood or horn, with a wide end to prevent slips in wet conditions. The tang of the parang is usually of rat tail tang design, and full tang designs are also available. Like the machete, the parang is frequently used in the jungle as well as being a tool for making housing, furniture, and tools. The parang has been noted in John "Lofty" Wiseman's SAS Survival Handbook for this use. Parang are recorded being used in attacks against the British and Japanese. They are typically carried as weapons by gang members and robbers in Malaysia, Singapore, India, and Sri Lanka, due to these countries having strict gun laws. Parangs were used by Chinese forces against the Japanese in the Jesselton Revolt during the Japanese occupation of British Borneo.
A golok is a cutting tool, similar to a machete, that comes in many variations and is found throughout the Indonesian archipelago. It is used as an agricultural tool as well as a weapon. The word golok (sometimes misspelled in English as "gollock") is of Indonesian origin but is also used in Malaysia and (spelled gulok) in the Philippines. In Malaysia the term is usually interchangeable with the longer and broader parang. In the Sundanese region of West Java it is known as bedog. Sizes and weights vary, as does blade shape, but the typical length is 25 to 50 centimeters. Golok tend to be heavier and shorter than parang or common machetes, often being used for bush and branch cutting. Most traditional golok use a convex edge or an edgewise taper, where the blade is less likely to get stuck in green wood than flat edged machetes. The blade is heaviest in the center and flows away in a curve to a sharp point at the tip. Golok are traditionally made with a springy carbon steel blade of a softer temper than that of other large knives. This makes them easier to dress and sharpen in the field, although it also requires more frequent attention. Although many manufacturers produce factory-made golok, there are still handmade productions that are widely and actively made in Indonesia. In Indonesia, the golok is often associated with the Betawi and neighboring Sundanese people. The Betawi recognize two types of golok; gablongan or bendo is the domestic tool used in the kitchen or field for agricultural purposes, and the golok simpenan or sorenam that is used for self-protection and traditionally always carried by Betawi men. The golok is a symbol of masculinity and bravery in Betawi culture. A jawara (local strongman or village champion) will always have a golok hung or tied around the waist at the hips. This custom, however, has ceased to exist since the 1970s, when authorities would apprehend those that carry the golok publicly and have it confiscated it in order to uphold security, law and order, and to reduce gang fighting. Sundanese, Javanese and Malay golok have also been recorded. The use of golok in Malay was recorded as early as the Hikayat Hang Tuah (text dated 1700) and Sejarah Melayu (1612). The golok style is noted for being the pattern for British Army-issue machetes used since the early 1950s.

Sabit / Celurit: A sickle originally employed when harvesting crops. It may be paired and was historically one of the most popular weapons among commoners. It was and still is the main weapon of silat exponents from Madura in East Java where it is known as arit. The arit has several forms and is typically longer than in other parts of Java. The sickle is difficult to defend against and is considered particularly effective when paired with a knife. It can be wielded on its own but is also commonly paired. A Celurit or Clurit is generally a sickle (sometimes other variants include billhook) with a pronounced crescent-blade patterns which curves more than half a circle and a long handle, is widely used for agricultural purposes and also in Pencak Silat. When compared to the Arit, the Celurit is slightly larger. Although the Celurit (or also generally known as Sabit) is widely used throughout the Indonesian archipelago for agricultural purposes, somehow it is strongly associated with the culture of the Madurese and is frequently used by them as well especially by the leaders who called themselves Sakera. It is possibly used as an agricultural tool in the Banjuwangi region on East Java and then conveyed to Madura. Besides Arit and Sabit, other variations of the Celurit includes the Arek, Caluk, Calok, Bendo Arit (billhook), Bhiris and so on depending on the geographical area and curvature of the crescent blade. Celurit is also a traditional weapon of the Madurese commonly used in Carok (meaning duel in Madurese language, 'fight in the name of honor'), a style of dueling unlike of those dueling style practiced in their neighboring island in Sulawesi. This weapon is also considered as a legendary weapon often associated with the heroic (pre-independence) freedom fighter, Sakera. The Madurese community are known to attach khodam, a type of mythical creature to abide in the Celurit by a way of prayer before engaging in a carok. The most famous incident in recent years, a mass carok occurred on 13 July 2006 in Bujur Tengah village, Pamekasan Regency, East Java, Indonesia, resulting stabbing and killing of seven men and seriously injuring nine people.

Kerambit / Kuku Machan: The kerambit (kurambik in the Minangkabau language) is a narrow-bladed curved weapon resembling the claw of big cats. It is known in some dialects as kuku machan or "tiger claw". The kerambit is held by inserting the first finger into the hole in the handle, so that the blade curves from the bottom of the fist. Although usually wielded singly they may also be paired. Not only are they difficult to disarm, the kerambit is also easily hidden on account of its compact size. This concealability was the main reason for the weapon's fame. The kerambit was often regarded as a lady's weapon because women would tie them into their hair. The karambit (as is spelled in the Philippines and in most Western countries), kerambit (as used in both Malaysian and Indonesian variants of Malay), kurambik, karambol or karambiak (both from the Minangkabau language) is a small Southeast Asian curved knife resembling a claw. The karambit is believed to have originally been weaponized among the Minangkabau people of West Sumatra where, according to folklore, it was inspired by the claws of tiger. As with most weapons of the region, it was originally an agricultural implement designed to rake roots, gather threshing and plant rice in most of island Southeast Asia. It's a smaller variant of the Southeast Asian sickles (Filipino panabas or karit; Indonesian celurit, arit, or sabit; and Malaysian sabit). As it was weaponised, the blade became more curved to maximise cutting potential. Through Indonesia's trade network and close contact with neighboring countries, the karambit was eventually dispersed through what are now Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and the Philippines. Culturally the karambit was a subject of condescension in Java because of its history as a weapon of the agrarian peasantry, as opposed to the kesatria (warrior class) who were trained in the keraton or royal palace. European accounts tell that soldiers in Indonesia were armed with a kris at their waist or back and a spear in their hands, while the karambit was used as a last resort when the fighter's other weapons were lost in battle. Nevertheless, it was popular among women who would tie the weapon into their hair to be used in self-defense. The renowned Bugis warriors of Sulawesi were famous for their embrace of the karambit. Today it is one of the main weapons of silat and is commonly used in Filipino martial arts as well. Superficially the karambit resembles the jambiyah but there is no connection. The jambiyah was always designed as a weapon and serves as a status marker, often made by skilled artisans and jewelers using precious stones and metals, whereas the karambit was and still remains an unadorned, modest farmer's implement and useful utility knife. The karambit is held with the blade pointing downward from the bottom of the fist, usually curving forwards however occasionally backwards. While it is primarily used in a slashing or hooking motion, karambit with a finger ring are also used in a punching motion hitting the opponent with the finger ring. Some karambit are designed to be used in a hammering motion. This flexibility of striking methods is what makes it so useful in self-defense situations. The finger guard makes it difficult to disarm and allows the knife to be maneuvered in the fingers without losing one's grip. The short Filipino karambit has found some favor in the West because such proponents allege the bio-mechanics of the weapon allow for more powerful cutting strokes and painful "ripping" wounds, and because its usability is hypothesized as more intuitive, though there continues to be debate about this matter. The technique of the karambit is also heavily focused on striking the weak points of the human body, such as the muscles from the knee and elbow. This is a very effective technique because of the curved blade. Because of this, the karambit is considered to be one of the deadliest melee weapons. There are many regional variants of karambit. The length of the blade, for example, could vary from one village or blacksmith to another. Some have no finger guard and some feature two blades, one on each side of the handle. Traditional types include:
Kuku Bima: Bhima's claw from West Java
Kuku Hanuman: Hanuman's claw from West Java
Kuku Machan: tiger's claw, endemic to Sumatra, Central Java and Madura
Kerambit Sumbawa: larger, sturdier kerambit made specially for battle. From the Sumba Islands
Kerambit Lombok: larger, sturdier kerambit made specially for battle. From Lombok
Lawi Ayam: chicken's claw, created by the Minang community
Additionally, modern karambit may have spikes or spurs on the front or rear ricasso, which may be intended for gripping clothing or horse tack, tearing flesh or for injecting a poison, such as the upas. The modern Western interpretation of the karambit is far removed from the original agricultural tool. They may have folding blades, are finished to a high standard, made from expensive materials as opposed to being rudimentary and makeshift and are generally larger to accommodate larger hands. The West has recently found the karambit to be useful for self-defense, prepping and survival because, by design, they are difficult for an opponent to dislodge from the hand and this provides a combative advantage. Western versions also include one or more safety rings. Preppers also use the karambit hunting, for backpacking, camping, fishing, farming, gardening and hunting. Most of those produced in the West for use as weapons are based on the small Filipino variety, which features a short blade and index finger ring. Both fixed blade (generally double-edged) and folding (generally single-edged) karambit are produced in mass production knife factories and also by custom blade-smiths.

Kris / Keris: The kris or keris is a type of dagger, often with a pistol-gripped handle. Traditionally worn as a status symbol and carried by warriors for when they lost their main weapon in battle, today it is the main weapon of many silat styles in Malaysia. The kris is characterised by its distinctive wavy blade, but originally most of them were straight. The blade is given its characteristic shape by folding different types of metal together and then washing it in acid. Kris were said to be infused with venom during their forging but the method of doing this was a closely guarded secret among blacksmiths. The kris is usually wielded on its own but it can also be paired. The word kris derives from the Old Javanese term ngiris which means to slice, wedge or sliver. A kris can be divided into three parts: blade (bilah or wilah), hilt (hulu), and sheath (warangka). These parts of the kris are objects of art, often carved in meticulous detail and made from various materials: metal, precious or rare types of wood, or gold or ivory. A kris's aesthetic value covers the dhapur (the form and design of the blade, with around 60 variants), the pamor (the pattern of metal alloy decoration on the blade, with around 250 variants), and tangguh referring to the age and origin of a kris. Depending on the quality and historical value of the kris, it can fetch thousands of dollars or more. Both a weapon and spiritual object, kris are often considered to have an essence or presence, considered to possess magical powers, with some blades possessing good luck and others possessing bad. Kris are used for display, as talismans with magical powers, weapons, a sanctified heirloom (pusaka), auxiliary equipment for court soldiers, an accessory for ceremonial dress, an indicator of social status, a symbol of heroism, etc. Legendary kris that possess supernatural power and extraordinary ability were mentioned in traditional folktales, such as those of Empu Gandring, Taming Sari, and Setan Kober. In 2005, UNESCO gave the title Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity to the kris of Indonesia. In return, UNESCO urged Indonesia to preserve their heritage.

Rencong: The rencong or renchong is a pistol-gripped knife from Aceh. The blade is straight but with a slight curve. In terms of social stature, the rencong in Aceh is comparable to the kris in Malay and Javanese culture. Originally a fighting weapon, it is most often seen today in the martial art of silat and worn during traditional ceremonies. The rencong is slightly L-shaped and has a sharp blade with a slightly convex back. The blade can vary in length from 10 to 50 cm. The blade can be straight or cranked like a kris. It is held in a scabbard of wood, ivory, horn, or sometimes even silver or gold. The rencong is worn on one's belt around the waist. The design of a rencong depends largely on the social status of its owner. The most common type is made of brass or silver steel with a sheath of wood or buffalo horn. The rencong used by royalty is more ornate and less functional. Royal rencong have sheathes of ivory and blade made from gold, engraved with Quranic verses. Rencong technique is dependent on the weapon's size. Smaller lengths are favored because they are more easily concealed. The rencong is worn on the left side and drawn with the left foot forward. A quick step forward with the right foot adds momentum to the thrust. It is then whipped to the right with a snap of the hand, bringing the palm upwards while the elbow is close to the body. The thrusting arm is almost fully extended and the palm is turned downward just before piercing the target. While the thrust is the primary method of attack, circular and elliptical slashing techniques exist as well. The main targets are the throat, kidneys, groin, and abdomen.

Badik: The badik or badek is a small, straight knife originating among the Makasar and Bugis people. They may be double or single-edged and range in length from twenty to forty centimeters. The badik consists of three parts, namely the handle and blade, as well as the sheath or scabbard. It comes in a great variety of shapes and sizes. The badik can have a straight, curved, bulbous or wavy, single- or double-edged blade. The blade is smooth or with hollow sections (fuller-ed). The point of the blade can be either pointed or rounded. Like the kris, the shape of the blade is asymmetric and often shows patterns typical of pamor (pattern welding steel commonly known as Damascus steel). However, it differs from the kris in that the badik does not have a ganja (a buffer strip steel). Some versions from Sulawesi are decorated with inlaid gold figure on the blade called jeko. The handle is made of wood, horn or ivory in a shape of a pistol grip at a 45° to 90° angle or similar in a bent shape often decorated with carvings. From its native Sulawesi, the badik soon spread to neighboring islands like Java, Borneo, Sumatra and as far as the Malay Peninsula, creating a wide variety of badik styles according to each region and ethnic group. There are many versions made and used throughout the Indonesian archipelago alone. The badik is the main weapon in Bugis and Mangkasara styles of pencak silat. It is drawn by slashing from left to right, and then again from right to left if the first attack fails. The badik is primarily a thrusting weapon. The Bugis and sometimes the Makassar use a pinch-grip when holding the badik, with the fingers just below the point where the handle is attached to the blade. The Mangkasara badik has a broader blade compared to the thinner Bugis counterpart. As a result, Mangkasara fighting systems use flat-blade techniques so that the weapon can penetrate between the ribs. The traditional form of duelling among the Bugis-Makassar community was called sigajang laleng lipa (in Bugis language), sitobo lalang lipa (in Makassarese language) or sibajji lalang lipa (among the Banyorangese community) in which the duellists fight in a sarong. The challenger stands with a loosened sarong around him and respectfully invites the other man to step into the sarong. The sarong itself is kept taut around both their waists. When both men are inside, an agreement to fight til death and thereafter shall be no hereditary grudge nor will any party be allowed to question the duel, shall be made. If both fighters agree, they then engage each other with badik within the confined space of a single sarong. Because avoiding injury is near-impossible even for the victor, this type of duel was considered a sign of extraordinary bravery, masculinity and the warrior mentality. Although true sitobo lalang lipa are no longer practiced, enactments of these duels are still performed at cultural shows today.

Kujang: The kujang is a blade weapon native to the Sundanese people of western Java, Indonesia. The earliest kujang made is from around the 8th or 9th century. It is forged out of iron, steel and pattern welding steel with a length of approximately 20–25 cm and weighs about 300 grams. According to Sanghyang siksakanda ng karesian canto XVII, the kujang was the weapon of farmers and has its roots in agricultural use. It is thought to have originated from its predecessor, a kudi. The kujang is one of the traditional weapons in the Sundanese school of pencak silat. The kujang, like the keris, is a blade of sentimental and spiritual value to the people of Indonesia, who have a vast belief in supernatural powers. Characteristics of a kujang includes a cutting edge and other parts such as pepatuk / congo the tip of the blade, eluk / silih the bulging curve at the base of the blade, tadah the inward curve at the belly of the blade, and mata small holes on the blade that are covered with gold or silver. Apart from its unique characteristics that tend to be thin, the material is dry, porous and contains many natural metal elements. In Bogor poem as it is spoken by Anis Djatisunda (1996–2000), the kujang has many functions and shapes. Based on functions there are four of them namely, kujang pusaka (symbol of grandeur and safety protection), kujang pakarang (warfare), kujang pangarak (ceremonial) and kujang pamangkas (agricultural tool). As for the shapes, there is the kujang jago (shape of a rooster), kujang ciung (shape of a Javan cochoa bird), kujang kuntul (shape of an egret bird), kujang badak (shape of a rhinoceros), kujang naga (shape of a mythical dragon), and kujang bangkong (shape of a frog). Apart from that there are shapes of the kujang blade that resemble female characters of wayang kulit as a symbol of fertility.

Klewang: The klewang or kelewang is a class of cutlass weapon between the sword and machete from Indonesia. During the Aceh War the Acehnese klewang proved very effective in close quarters combat against the cutlass-wielding Dutch troops and the Royal Netherlands East Indies Army. Mobile troops armed with carbines and klewang succeeded in suppressing Aceh resistance where traditional infantry with rifle and bayonet had failed. From that time on until the 1950s the Royal Dutch East Indies Army, Royal Dutch Army, Royal Dutch Navy and Dutch police used these cutlasses called klewang. Even from the time after Aceh was pacified by the Dutch to the 1930s and right through World War II, lone wolves Acehnese without generals would still attack Europeans in hopes of getting martyred themselves in order to attain paradise. Weapons used in such cases are usually the klewang, if not the Rencong. In the Royal Netherlands Army the klewang is still used as a ceremonial weapon by the colour guard of the Regiment van Heutsz which took over the traditions of the Royal Netherlands East Indies Army, where the klewang was historically used as a side arm. The klewang features a single-edge blade with a protruding notch near its tip. In size, weight and shape it is halfway between the golok and the kampilan. The style of the klewang differs between the various cultures of Indonesia. Blades range from 15 to 30 inches (38 to 76 cm) in length and may be straight or slightly curved. It is carried for show by followers of chiefs, or taken on expeditions to market or nightly walks in the villages. It is worn without a sheath although there are sheathed varieties.

Pedang: Pedang is a general term for sword but occasionally refers to a scythe as well. According to the Sanghyang siksakanda ng karesian canto XVII dated 1518, the sword and kris were the main weapons of the kesatria caste. Southeast Asian swords can differ considerably from one community to another but they are generally made for one-handed use. Varieties include the pedang jenawi or long-sword, the gedubang or Acehnese sabre, and the long-handled dap. The Indian-style sword was used in the region as early as the 4th century, as can be seen in bas-reliefs of Javanese temples. Some are straight while others have a "bent" curve. The Hindu goddesses Durga and Manjusri are typically depicted carrying swords in Javanese art. Sumatran broadswords are based on those of China. Swords on the Malay Peninsula are usually one-edged with a slight curve, resembling the Burmese dha and the Thai sword used in krabi-krabong.

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