Arit Bali as Traditional Weapons and Agricultural Tools


Arit Bali is a sickle, a sharp object with a semicircular shape like a crescent with a sharpened inner arc. Balinese people use it when going to the fields to clear the grass around the rice field.

The farmers who harvest the rice also use this traditional weapon to cut the rice plants whose grain is yellow or ripe. By using this tool, the process of rice cutting will be faster. Because the edges are curved, it is easy to hook and cut. Farmers can cut 1 bunch of rice plants with just one movement.

In addition, Balinese people who have livestock, such as cattle and goats would use it to cut grass as fodder. Of course the shape that has curved edges does make sickles the easiest weapon to cut grass.

The Material of Arit Bali

Usually the blacksmiths choose a strong iron or steel as the raw material. By that material, it will not be easily blunted. Although the use is only to cut grass and other plants, they still want it last quite long.

To get high-quality Arit Bali, the blacksmiths choose the quality of steel commonly used for railroad tracks. This is because the strength of the steel is more resilient in the face of collisions, especially if it collides with hard objects. Other raw materials are peer or shock steel which have high durability and long lifetime.

Of course the quality of the weapons produced is tough because it includes stainless steel with several mineral contents, such as carbon, chromium, manganese, and others. But the strength of steel will decrease when burned in high temperatures and forged with harder objects.

The Shape of Arit Bali

The appearance of Balinese sickles is different from that in several regions in Indonesia. The blade is more white, thinner, and shinier. This is in contrast to most Javanese black sickles, while the white color is only found at the sharpest part.

The shape of this thin and curved weapon does have a light weight and is only about 1 kg. So, it is easy to carry anywhere. The weight is only on the metal, while the handle uses lightweight wood. For the overall length of the Balinese sickle, it only takes about 45 cm. But, because the edges are circular so the size is about 35 cm in total.

The Traditional Weapon of Farmers and Breeders

Everyone who walks in the area of ??Bali and holds a sharp weapon can indeed fear the people who see it. But, unlike any other weapons, bringing an arit will create no fear. Instead, in only indicates that the owner is going to farm or breed.

In addition, many cattle and goat breeders also bring Arit when they go to look for grass as fodder. It has become a Balinese tradition and culture that this weapon is not considered deadly. Although, in emergency situation this sharp instrument can turn into a killing instrument. But the function, by default, is as an agricultural and animal husbandry tool. Almost all Balinese houses in the countryside have a Arit Bali for cutting grass or cutting bushes.


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