Vietnamese dha
This item has been sold.
Overall length

Sheathed 90 cm

Sword 81.5 cm

Blade length

50.5 cm

Blade thickness

Base 4.7 mm

Middle 3.8 mm

Tip 3.6 mm

Blade width

Base 24 mm

Widest 28 mm

Weight

753 grams

Point of balance

1 cm from guard

Materials

Steel, silver, copper, wood, resin

Origin

Vietnam

Dating

19th century

Provenance

French antique art market

Sold

Interested?
Anything similar for sale?

Contact me

Description

An interesting Southeast Asian dha sword. The blade gently widens in profile until the tip where the edge arcs upward and then again forwards to form a sharp, beak-like point.

Point

(It is perhaps entirely coincidental, but another sword that has a point like this is the telögu from Nias. The back of the sword has a very high, peaked spine, which is, again, possibly coincidental, reminiscent of some Sundanese blades from West Java.)

 

Hilt & scabbard

Unusual for a dha, it has a full-tang construction that is peened over at the pommel. A Vietnamese design feature that is more common on the more Chinese styles weapons of this culture.

The mounts are of silver of a very high purity, embossed in fairly high relief with typical Vietnamese designs, including dragons. The hilt is entirely encased in a series of silver tubes, with lotus bud pommel. It has a large, thickened ferrule that sits against a copper guard. This guard is of four-lobed form with a silver rim. It has silver inlays of flowers on the blade side.

The hardwood scabbard has silver mouth- and endpieces in the same Vietnamese style.

 

Intended audience

While the workmanship appears to be entirely Vietnamese, the overall style especially of the hilt mimics that of ancient swords once used in the general region, from Vietnam to Thailand. By the 19th century, only some people in Laos still used the style especially in the region of Attapeu.

This piece may have been made to commemorate an earlier period, like some Heian period Tachi were still made in late Edo period Japan. Or, it may have been meant as a diplomatic gift or luxury item.

Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style
Vietnamese dha in Laotian style

Do you have anything for sale?

I might be interested in buying it.

Contact me
Currently available:

A very rare ceremonial variety with copper scabbard inlaid with different alloys, and a brass blade.

€6000,-

Very finely carved with designs reminiscent of export wares.

€500,-

Rare old keris handle made into a European wax seal.

€1500,-

A nice example with unusually fine lacquerwork and a monogram in the lid.

€3800,-

In black and gold urushi lacquer, with fine mother-of-pearl inlays with aquatic landscapes on both sides. …

€7600,-

An exceedingly rare set with fine mother of pearl inlaid string board

€6000,-