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Old 7th June 2021, 03:24 AM   #4
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: The Aussie Bush
Posts: 3,279

Hi Stu,

The adya katti is uncommon but not rare. They are still worn by Coorgi men on ceremonial occasions, along with the traditional knife (pichangatti). I have read (can't remember where) that at Coorgi weddings it is customary that the groom and some of his family ritually cut down corn stalks with the adya katti as a gift to the bride's party. The use of this "tool" as a weapon is well documented by Edgerton and others.

The blade form is similar to the so-called "Moplah/Malabar chopper" (Muslim version) and the "Mysore chopper" (Hindu version). Geographically the distribution of these knives corresponds mainly to the western and central areas of the State of Karnataka in southern India. The Muslim (Moplah) form occurred along the Malabar coast from roughly Mangalore to Goa, and the Mysore version further inland around the old capital of Mysore.

The Coorgi have been a fiercely independent group and celebrated warriors for centuries. Some have risen to high ranks in the modern Indian Armed Forces. Their origins are somewhat obscure, with some believing that they arose from remnants of the army of Alexander the Great, staying behind after Alexander left and marrying into the local tribal groups. I'm not aware of any scientific evidence to support that idea.


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