Mandau (Borneo)

Code: IN1b

Here are two Mandau swords of the Sea Dayak (Iban) tribe of Borneo.  The swords each measure nearly 2 feet in length and are richly detailed on the scabbard.  The scabbards are traditionally bound with woven rattan. 

The purpose of the smaller knife is variously explained to be personal hygiene,  domestic purposes, dissecting a killed animal and most gruesomely, removal of soft tissue from within an enemy’s skull, typically through the nostrils.  In remote villages of Kalimantan, travelers still come across skulls—usually not fresh ones.


Read more about The Mandau

Dayak Parang

Forging a Mandau