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Author Topic: KAMPILANS AND SCIMITARS  (Read 1865 times)
Power User
Posts: 84

« on: July 13, 2006, 09:01:14 PM »

Magellan's historian Antonio Pigafetta, described the weapons used against Magellan. The weapon that struck his lower limbs and initiated his death was described as a scimitar or cutlass. In the Italian translation it was also the same.

Many have described these weapons as Kampilans and we envision the 'v' tipped straight swords. It has been illustrated thus in many books and articles of the battle. However, after looking at old books of that time especially weapons catalogued by the Spanish government for their own studies, the kampilans of that day look very much like actual scimitars, not the straight bladed kind that the kampilans evolved into. The 'Campilanes' illustrated in the Resen'a Historica de la Guerra al Sur de Filipinas in 1857 were markedly different than the ones we see today. They are twice as wide where the tip widens, some bow out instead of the 'v' prongs, or in reverse, bow in at the tip instead of making the 'v', more of an exagerrated curve on the blade shape than a straight weapon.  At the punto were tassels, similar to the ones we see on latter versions.

I always wondered why the Portugese, Spanish and Italian had described the kampilans as scimitars, and that was due to the weapons looking more like a fatter classical scimitar from the Arabian Nights. A page of the catalogue is reproduced on page 213 of Muslims in the Philippines by Majul.

Sayoc Kali

"..awaken your consciousness of our past, already effaced from our memory, and to rectify what has been falsified and slandered."
Jose Rizal, from his 1889 essay, ' To The Filipinos '
the spaniard
Posts: 8

« Reply #1 on: July 26, 2006, 06:28:40 AM »

Even i'm not an expert in my own history  embarassed i think you're right.
After 800 years of arabs in Spain they were used to see CIMITARRAS and called the Muslims of that part of Philipines MOROS after the moros in Spain.
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