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Old 24th May 2021, 02:35 PM   #1
Iain
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Default A Northern Thai daab with silver and ivory

Another day another daab...

Nothing that hasn't been seen before, but one I quite like for the overall aesthetic. Good quality silver mounts (with an intact pommel cap for a change!) with of elephant ivory as the grip. Lotus bud style tip and marked blade.

Last pic is just to show it hanging out with its natural "enemy" from across the border in Burma.
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Old 26th May 2021, 10:06 AM   #2
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Another lovely blade Iain. I liked the hardened edge (quenched or inserted do you think?) and peaked spine. An interesting mark struck at forte--this reminds me of some of the marks used by the HuSa of southern Yunnan. Nice ivory and silver hilt. Just a delightful old daab.
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Old 26th May 2021, 11:16 AM   #3
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Another lovely blade Iain. I liked the hardened edge (quenched or inserted do you think?) and peaked spine. An interesting mark struck at forte--this reminds me of some of the marks used by the HuSa of southern Yunnan. Nice ivory and silver hilt. Just a delightful old daab.
Thanks Ian, I agree the etching works well on this one, I believe its a quenched edge as most of these are. The mark I have seen referred to as a Chakram by some Thai collectors and as you say seems common to the northern most regions of modern day Thailand and into Yunnan, not surprising given the ethnic connections common to the region.

This one is a particular favourite of the missus and is usually on rotation in the main display stand in the living room.
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Old 27th May 2021, 01:02 AM   #4
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You also see that round mark on more recent Thai dha. Is the significance of this mark understood?
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Old 27th May 2021, 07:04 AM   #5
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You also see that round mark on more recent Thai dha. Is the significance of this mark understood?
I agree Jeff. A similar mark does appear on contemporary Thai daab, since at least the 1950s and probably earlier. Mark Bowditch had some information he shared on the now defunct UBB part of this forum. I think he called the more recent examples a "bitter melon seed." This mark and several others I usually associate with HuSa daos, the blades of which are sometimes traded into northern Thailand.

What is unusual about this mark on Iain's daab is the age of the sword. I would say Iain's sword is the oldest example of such a mark that I have seen. This sword seems to be of 19th C manufacture, or perhaps very early 20th C. The similarly marked HuSa blades that I have handled all appeared to be WWII era or later.

As to the significance of these marks, we do not have authoritative information. It is presumed that they are maker's marks but there is no clear evidence that is the case.
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