Sema Naga Dao

This is a Naga dao sword, c. 1850, with a complete scabbard and intact rattan bindings from the Sema Naga, possibly created by a Kachin smith.
Naga wearing this type dao

Code IP23

This is a dao sword, c. 1850, with a complete scabbard and intact rattan bindings. It was probably collected from the Sema (Sumi, Zeme) Naga tribe. While swords such as this one have come to be associated with the Naga, it is likely that they obtained it by trade or raid.  One expert on ado's from this region suggests a Kachin (Chin) origin for this sword. It would have been regarded as a fine and prestigious item as the Naga were not especially good smiths.  

The Sema Naga reside in the region of Nagaland, in the hills that border Assam and northwest Burma (Myanmar). Nearby are the Kachins. The Kachin are an ethnic group or affinity of several tribal groups principally residing in Burma's northern Kachin State and neighboring areas of China and India (Assam). The Jinghpaw (Jingpaw, Jinghpaw, jingpo, Chingpaw) Kachin tribe have a long history of fine sword making and martial skills. 

 Like their neighbors, the Naga, the Kachin are a fiercely independent group of tribes that customarily raided each other and neighboring areas in the pursuit of human heads.

The overall length of the sword alone is approximately 24 inches. The hilt is 6 inches, of wood, round with a flaring pommel. The hilt is wrapped tightly with rattan.  The blade is secure in the hilt with no wobble.  The blade is 18 inches in length with a thickness just over ⅛ inch at the hilt. It is quite sturdy despite being relatively thin. The width at the hilt is about 1 ½ inches, 1 inch at the most narrow, and 2 full inches at the tip. The blade is  slightly concave along the back and more concave along the sharp edge. The tip is squared with a slight concave shape (Hua Tat Khong). 

Read more about the Naga.