With silver overlay on iron even continued on its hilt.
Sheathed 77 cm
Sword 72.8 cm
Base 10.5 mm
Middle 5 mm
5 cm from tip 3 mm
Narrowest at base 23 mm
Widest at tip 29 mm
10 cm from hilt
Iron, steel, bamboo, wood, brass, copper, resin, cotton
Bamar people of Burma
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A typical Burmese dha of the Bamar majority of the country. The blade starts thick and narrow, thinning out in thickness as it reaches maximum width near the tip. It has an interesting and somewhat unusual set of grooves, including a wide groove at the base flanked by two narrow grooves on either side that wrap around a cartouche with text. Then follows a wide fuller on either side, starting alongside a long back bevel. It even has two short grooves at the base of the spine:
The hilt is made of a piece of bamboo root with a burly grain. Its pommel and ferrule are copper, inlaid with brass. This is quite unusual, because normally one would use the softer of two metals for the inlay but the opposite was done here. It gives a nice effect that I had not seen before, now covered with a beautiful patina.
The scabbard is made of two halves of wood, held together by metal wires. A sliver from the mouth of the scabbard is missing. The rope binding there is a later replacement.
Markings are rarely seen on Burmese dha, so I'm always happy to see an example. In this case they seem to be good luck charms.
Jan Shin dā
"Danger eliminating sword"
bei jan kin
"Be safe from danger"
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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 century.
One of the rarest forms of dha, with a hilt and scabbard carved like a bird.
The thick and heavy blade is marked with a script that has yet to be identified.
Of a type likely produced by the Shan people and traded widely in the region.