In the Malay world, swords have a double function, they can either be a warrior's weapon or an all purpose utility tool.

Swords have different shape and use, they can be divided in four major types.

Parang, a generic term used all over the archipelago to describe any type of single edge chopping weapon. Usually a kind of machete used for hunting or moving in the jungle. 

Dayak Parang

Heavily convex blades

Other Parang

  Pedang, is another generic term used to describe a cutting or thrusting straight or slightly curved blade weapon.  In Java, Bali and Madura, the blade is often in pamor.

Pedang Suduk

Pedang Sabet

Klewang, is a weapon with a straight cutting edge widening towards the point and a straight back which brings it to the tip at a slant. The point of gravity is nearer to the point. Some varieties have a protruding spike at the tip.

Other Klewang


Golok, is a kind of cleaver. It has a short heavy blade with a cutting edge and a straight or slightly concave back. Some types have a blade heavier in the center and curving to a sharp point at the tip.

Golok Lurus

Golok Lenkung

Aceh warrior 
with Sikim, schield and Tombak

"Der Vorfechter" from "Skizze, von der Insel Java und derselben verschiedenen Bewohner" JJX Pfyffer zu Neueck, Schaffhausen 1829


Prajurit Keraton Jogya
(guard of the Sultan)
with Keris, Tombak and Pedang



Back Up Next
Glossary of Terms  - Home - Contact us 
OLD BLADES - Malay World Edged Weapons.  Copyright 2000 - 2007
Revised: 2007-05-20