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Original 19th Century Philippine Moro Kris Straight Blade Long Knife with Wood Scabbard - Kalis

Regular price $295.00

Item Description

Original Item: One Only. This is an excellent Kris style short sword from the Philippines, as used by the Mor people. The collective term Moro people or Bangsamoro people refers to the 13 Islamized ethnolinguistic groups of Mindanao, Sulu, and Palawan. They had fought against the United States during the Philippine-American War of 1899 - 1902, in which the Moro tribe rebelled against American rule. The insurrection had been going on since the early 1890s, when the Spanish still claimed the Philippines as their Colony. However, after their defeat by the United States in the Spanish American War, the Philippine islands were ceded to the U.S.. Most of the Moro tribe actually continued the struggle until their final defeat in 1913.

During WWII, The Moros fought against the Japanese occupation of Mindanao and Sulu during World War II and eventually drove them out. Also when the Japanese occupied the northern Borneo area, they also helped their relatives there in a struggle to fight off the Japanese where many of them, including women and children, were massacred after their revolt with the Chinese had been foiled by the Japanese.

When the U.S. defeated Japan and the Philippines were freed, many U.S. serviceman brought back mementos from the Islands, which sadly had suffered large losses of life due to Japanese occupation.

This long knife / short sword is made in the traditional Kris (Kalis) style and form with scabbard. The basic design is the same throughout the area, but only in the Philippine Islands did it evolve into a sword, though this example is more of a long knife. This example dates to the 1880-1895 period, and has a 14 1/2 inch double edged blade. It is just about 1 inch wide for most of the blade, and tapers to a point at the tip.

The bottom of the blade is a separate piece of metal, as is correct, and there is a decorative copper collar around the tang. The wooden grip is very nice, with a nice "bird's head" style curve, and some carvings on the inside of the curve, which may be local deities. There is a lovely decorative embossed brass fitting on the top of the grip. There is a stress crack near the pommel on the right side of the grip, but it does not go all the way through. Condition is very good, with the blade showing a lot of cleaning and polishing in the past, which has exposed a lot of the laminations clearly in the steel.

It comes contained in the original wood scabbard, which has the main portion made from a single piece of wood that looks to have been hallowed out. There are no metal fittings as we often see on other examples, and the wood has some cracking and glue repairs towards the bottom. The top of the scabbard is a separate piece of wood, called the sampir, which protects the crossguard of the blade. It fits it like a glove on this lovely example. 

Please See Stone's Glossary page 390 to see various styles of these Philippine Moro Swords.

Very interesting, ready to research and display!

Blade length: 14 1/2”
Blade Style: Straight "Kris"
Overall length: 19”
Scabbard length: 17”

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