The kampilan is a long sword with a single-edge that has been traditionally utilized by numerous ethnic groups that live in the Philippines. The kampilan sword featured a noticeable profile with a tapered blade that was thinner and broader at its point compared to its base.
There are times when the kampilan sword features a protruding spikelet and this can be found along the tip’s flat side area; it also had a bifurcated hilt that was said to symbolize the open mouth of a certain mythical creature. The kampilan was a special weapon utilized mainly for warfare that ranges from little skirmishes to large-scale battle encounters.
Based on numerous historical records from the Philippines, the kampilan was mostly utilized by warriors and chieftains for battle; plus, it was also utilized as a head hunting sword. One of the most popular battles wherein a large number of kampilans were used was during the Battle of Mactan in the year 1521.
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Origin of the Kampilan Sword
The kampilan was a double pointed and heavy sword with a very rich history; it was one of the earliest weapons to be mentioned in ancient Philippine epics such as the Biag ni Lam Ang and the Hinilawod.
When it comes to the specific design and style of the Kampilan, it was not really that uncommon among the many ethnic groups present throughout the Philippine archipelago. In this day and age, the kampilan sword is portrayed in the ancient traditions and art of the Philippines.
It was known as one of the most popular swords used in the Philippines before the country was conquered by the Spaniards. Based on records, the very first Philippine hero and Mactan chieftain, Lapu-Lapu, was the person who killed the Portuguese explorer named Ferdinand Magellan and utilized the Kampilan to achieve this.
Originally, the weapon was dual-pointed with a finely carved hilt and these were mostly carried by warriors who were positioned in the first line of defense.
The kampilan was treated as the Moros national weapon and in history, it was said that just a single swing of the weapon can readily chop two heads with ease; it was is believed that the kampilan is the longest sword that the Filipino warriors wielded.
The kampilan is also said to be the most documented weapon by Spanish Conquistadors while they occupied the Philippines from the years 1565 to 1898. Today, the Moros of Maranao and Maguindanao continue to utilize the kampilan bolos or swords.
Among all the Filipino swords, the most distinguishing aspect of the kampilan sword is its colossal size. It measures about thirty-six to forty inches in length which is much larger compared to other Filipino battle swords; it was also thought to be the longest weapon though there are smaller versions of this and these are called the kampilan bolo.
It is claimed that the longer kampilan sword was carried by only the most skilled fighter/warrior or individuals with higher status during that period. The sword was quite deadly when a skilled fighter utilized it with the fluid and deceptive fighting style that the kampilan was linked to.
Its single-edged blade is adequately counterbalanced by its hilt made of hardwood, making it one of the most formidable weapons for combat. When it comes to the design, the most distinct element of its hilt would be the pommel which was shaped precisely to symbolize the wide, open mouth of a creature.
The blades of a kampilan usually feature holes close to the tip which were sometimes filled with brass. There were some rare kampilans that featured tips that have the fretwork of the kris while other versions featured intricate engravings throughout the entire blade; although the weapon can be utilized with just one hand, it was created to be a double-handed sword.
Since the kampilan also featured a spikelet, some descriptions that have been documented state that the sword was double or dual-tipped; its scabbard was commonly made using cheap wood but was wrapped with simple fiber lashings or rattan.
When the wielder needed to immediately use the kampilan, he would strike the sheathed weapon and the blade would automatically slice through the lashings; this will affect a swift and tactical attack without having to bother unsheathing the weapon. Scabbards were commonly unadorned since these were disposable pieces when heading out for battle.
Types of Kampilan
Listed are some of the different variants of the kampilan sword:
The Maranao Kampilan
This type of kampilan was a single-edged weapon that featured an ornate handle that was made of fine ivory and brass. At the bottom of the handle, one can find strands of human hair to decorate the sword. It is believed that the Maranaos utilized the sword to chop off the heads of enemies as well as splitting their bodies from top to bottom.
In this day and age, the kampilan is mostly utilized by the sultan and the datu to symbolize their wealth, status, and power; it is also mainly produced as a commercialized piece.
The kampilan bolo was another sword that is rich in Filipino history; it was utilized by the soldiers and men who served under the Datu rich and high ranking man of a certain tribe in the Philippines.
The weapon was primarily utilized to slice off the heads or hands of the enemy and it was also used with two hands, to split their bodies into two from head to toe.
Kampilan Sword for Sale
The kampilan can be an extremely dangerous weapon in the hands of a skilled warrior, and despite its size, a lot of individuals appreciate this weapon.
So for those who wish to add this type of weapon to their collection of swords, or for those who wish to learn the deceptive methods of fighting that is linked with the kampilan, one can find a quality made kampilan for sale from weapon shops online.
The kampilan sword for sale comes in two categories: the fully functional blade which can be readily used for training and cutting practice, while the decorative sword is primarily for decoration or to include in a collector’s growing set of weapons and armor.
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