Indo-persian

Fine Jeweled Pichangatti Coorg Knife

Pichangatti Knife

14958 Category:

Origin: Karnataka, India

Date: 19C.

The Pichangatti knife is the traditional knife of the Kodava people resides in what is today Karnataka state in South West India. The word means hand knife. The British named the region “Coorgi”, a corruption of “Kannada” the local word that means “hilly”, the geographical condition of the region. It so happens that the Kodava people are named Coorg and the Pichangatti knife is better known as Coorg knife.

The Pichangatti knife has a short, heavy single edge blade, grip with down curving pommel, silver mounted scabbard and in many cases a silver chain is attached to the scabbard. The Pichangatti is worn below a wide waist belt and the silver chain is folded over the belt. See below.

The Pichangeti is one of the rarest knives of the Indian arsenal. Its rarity is a result of a punishment inflicted by the British administration on the Kodava people in 1884, when a huge number of weapons, including knives, swords and firearms were confiscated and dumped in the sea.

The fine exemplar shown here is of an exceptionally rare form. The silver handle has a zoomorphic parrot shaped pommel set with red gem stones eyes. The blade is marked along the spine with the “eyelashes” mark of quality. The scabbard with silver mounts and a short heavy silver chain (The finial missing).

Blade 8 inches, total 12 1/2 inches, very good condition.

For a similar rare form of Pichangatti see:
The Royal Armories, Leeds, Item number XXVID.17
Robert Hales: “Islamic and oriental Arms and Armor” Page 76 Fig 163
See also: Robert Elgood “Fireatms of the Islamic World” P/ 184-185

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