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Keris straight Tilam Upih Blade tangguh Pajang (1551-1582, Central Java) with Scabbard of Timaha pelet Tulak wood


This keris has a straight blade symbolizing the makers prayers that the bearer of this keris be given steadfastness and faith. When new it must have had a deep groove in the tikel alis as now it has rusted through making a hole in the groove. Many keris are believed to gain more esoteric power if they have a natural hole on the blade but the modern collector is better advised to guard the precious blade from rust. Modern collectors in Indonesia tend to clean the blades using traditional methods then the blade is oiled and scented without being painted with lemon and arsenic to contrast the pamor with the iron and the steel. Although the arsenic and lemon juice do bring out the contrasts of then patterns of the blade, this treatment also eats away into the metals and ultimately destroys the blade.

The rust apparently occurred because it had been wrongly looked after for many years and has now been stopped. Beginning in the Great Depression in the 1920's-1930's and even more so during the times of the Second World war and the upheavals that followed it arsenic was expensive and people began to cacam their keris blades. To cacam one's keris one must hunt as many nasty venomous animals as one can find. When one has a bucket full of venomous snakes, frogs, centipedes, scorpions, and whatever leave it to all rot with your keris blade in there. When all has rotted and become a slime a film of the slime is allowed to dry and stick on the blade and the cacam process was done. This makes the rust go unnoticed over years but fortunately even though people do still cacam daggers for fighting and other nasty weapons it is not common to cacam keris blades anymore. With the right care this keris will survive for many more centuries.


The meteorite pamor of this keris is laid out in the kulit semangka watermelon skin pattern and is believed to bring prosperity and is suitable to be used by anyone. There is also some faint adeg mrambut designs making this keris a rather special pamor dwi warna blade with two types of pamor design on it. The pamor adeg however, is believed to be rather choosy and is not suitable for people who do not follow high moral standards. It is believed to bring protection from disasters, illness, misfortune, and people's ill will. The Tilam Upih style is the most common style of keris in Java and is believed to protect, guide, and inspire the tongue of the bearer.


The scabbard of this keris is in the style called gayaman ladrang which has been out of fashion since around the early 20th century. It is made of the prized timaha pelet tulak wood which is believed to protect the bearer from bad intentions of others similar to the pamor adeg. As guardian of this object of power Indostan would like to offer this keris for a dowry of five hundred and seventy five pounds.


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DISCLAIMER: The materials and the make dates of Asian antiques are rarely explicit on the piece. All our descriptions of use, materials, and the dates of our antiques are approximates based on our experience and knowledge. Please contact us if you have other suggestions concerning the nature and the dates of the antiques we sell. Any unsatisfactory item, if returned within 30 days, will be fully refunded excluding shipping costs.