Language: Burmese
Source: Period account

Da̱hmjaun (ဓားမြှောင်) is the name for a Burmese dagger. In old colonial writings and among collectors today it is often spelled dha hmyuang.1

It consists of the words:

Da (ဓားမြှောင်); Knife, chopper, sword. 
Hmjaun (မြှောင်); 1. Be alongside; get alongside; stay alongside. 2. Depend on.2

A fine dha hmyuang

A fine Burmese dha hmyuang with carved ivory hilt.


1. E.N. Bell I.C.S.; A Monograph on Iron and Steel Work in Burma. Rangoon, Superintendent, Government Printing Burma, 1907. Also see Robert Hales; Islamic and Oriental Arms and Armour: A Lifetime's Passion, England, 2013. Pages 148-149.
2. Terms taken from Adoniram Judson; Judson's Burmese-English dictionary, revised and enlarged by Robert C. Stevenson. Government Printing, Rangoon, Burma, 1893. Available on and Myanmar-English Dictionary by the Myanmar Language Commission. 1993. A useful online source is the SEAlang Library Burmese Dictionary Resources. All transcriptions are thus in the MLC Transcription System.


Historical mentions

"I had neither knife, spoon, nor fork, so fingers had to do duty for all three, aided by a knife lent me by a Burman; these knives of theirs have a blade about six inches long, are very sharp, and are used alike for domestic purposes or for stabbing each other in a row." 1

-Colonel Fitz William Thomas Pollok, 1879


Notes to historical mentions
1. Colonel Fitz William Thomas Pollok; Sport in British Burmah, Assam, and the Cassyah and Jyntiah hills. Chapman and Hall, London. 1879. Volume 1. Page 54.


Other Burmese da types

Da (ဓား); Knife; chopper; sword; dah.

Da̱lwe (ဓားလွယ်); Sword in scabbard slung from the shoulder.

Da̱ma (ဓားမ); Chopper; knife with a broad blade.

Da̱mau (ဓားမောက်); Knife with a broad blade and curved point.

Hnge' kji daun (ငှက်ကြီးတောင်); A kind of long sword.

Lin gin (လင်းကင်); Machete-like sword with a crescent-shaped tip. A.k.a. "linkin dha".

Shan da (ရှမ်းဓား); Shan light sword with pointed blade.

Than lje (သန်လျက်); Double edged sword. Also: Four-edged dagger which forms part of the Myanmar regalia.2


Further reading

Glossary article: dha / da (ဓား).
Article: A Burmese da glossary

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Very rare set of Burmese knives from Mindan village.


For holding and protecting important documents.


With silver overlay on iron even continued on its hilt.


Fine Mindan dha with a scene from the Ramayana on its blade.


Fine silver overlaid dha made in Mindan village, south of Mandalay, gained fame in the 19th…


The thick and heavy blade is marked with a script that has yet to be identified.