15 August 2013

The Balinese kris or keris

Although classified as a weapon, the Kris has a ceremonial function. The oldest ones come from the Buddha age, between the 6th and 7th centuries. There are approximately 20 periods, named according to the kingdoms that commissioned them, up to the present day. Each has their own distinctive markings. At the end of the 15th century the Majapahit kingdom was responsible for the spread of the Kris to Cambodia, Thailand, the Philippines and Malaysia.

Even today a real Balinese Kris is regarded as sacred and believed to possess sakti and have magical power called tuah. They are heirlooms. A man is not considered a real man unless he has a Kris. A Kris can increase bravery, help avoid illnesses and protect the owner from black magic and misfortune. They can be worth as much as US$100,000.

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