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Small Malay Sewar Dagger with Hippopotamus Ivory Mounts

Malay People, Sumatra or Malay Peninsula
19th century

length: 19cm, weight: 49cm

Available - Enquire


private collection, UK

This small, fine sewar dagger has a slightly curved, long, single-edged steel blade; and a long, thin wooded hilt with a hippopotamus ivory chape and hand-guard, and a hippopotamus ivory hilt.

Sewars were intended as stabbing weapons. The small, fine proportions of this example suggest it was intended for use by a Malay woman.

This example is in fine condition. It has a superb patina, particularly the ivory hilt and hand-guard which have a rich, honeyed colour. The ivory has the seams and grain that is typical of hippopotamus ivory.


Sheppard, M., Taman Indera: Malay Decorative Arts and Pastimes, Oxford University Press, 1972.

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