Asian Swords

The sword is known as a long-bladed weapon that is made specifically for thrusting or slashing. Its term has an accurate definition but it varies depending on the geographical region or the historical epoch that is under consideration. Additionally, the weapon is also made up of an extended blade that can either be curved or straight; plus, it is also connected to the sword guard for a more durable and effective piece. Thrusting weapons can sometimes feature a pointed tip and its blade often appears to be straighter; when it comes to the slashing swords, these have sharpened edges either on one or both sides of its blade and often, these are more likely to have curved blades.

History of Asian Swords

Historically, these swords have first developed during the Bronze Age and have evolved from the bronze dagger which dates all the way back to 1600 BC. After this period, the swords created during the Iron Age remained quite short and appeared without a crossguard. For the non-European swords, these included most of the single-edged blades just like the Chinese Dao, the Middle Eastern Scimitar, and the Japanese Katana. The Jian that has originated from the Chinese is a good example of a double-edged sword that does not come from Europe.

Asian Swords

Throughout history, the technology of steel has greatly evolved which is why single-edged blades became highly favored all over Asia. Asian swords – just like the Hwandudaedo of Korea – were based from the Chinese Dao or Jian and were known all the way from the early medieval period of the Three Kingdoms.

The Japanese Swords

This country was highly popular for the weapons that they have produced during the early thirteenth century, and these were primarily for the nobility class, specifically the samurai warriors. These kinds of swords that pre-dated the appearance of the samurais included the tsurugi which are straight and double-edged blades, and the chokuto that features a straight and single-edged blade. The production of swords in Japan reached its zenith around the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries which is the period when the samurai realized their need for a weapon that could be utilized effectively in close quarters; this led to the production of the contemporary katana.

The nihonto is among the several kinds of classically produced swords from the Land of the Rising Sun. Swords have been created all the way back from the Kofun era, but those that were made after the Heian period were the pieces that featured curves. Some of the more common types of Japanese swords included the tachi, wakizashi, and of course, the katana.

Production of swords in Japan is categorized into different time periods and these include the following:

  • Jokoto – ancient weapons that were created until around 900 AD
  • The Koto – old blades created in the years 900 to 1596
  • Shinto – new swords that were made in the years 1596 to 1780
  • The Shinshinto – known as the new, new swords from 1781 to 1879
  • Gendaito – for the modern swords created in the years 1876 and 1945
  • The Shinsakuto – are the newly created swords from the year 1953 until the present

Earlier samples of these Japanese swords were considered as the straight jokoto while the others featured unusual shapes; some other methods and designs were most likely derived from the Chinese swords while some other pieces were imported straight through trade. In this day and age, Japanese swords are still present which is why modern and antique forged blades can easily be seen and purchased for various purposes. The earliest weapons that were developed in Japan featured a straight blade since these were mostly based on the Chinese Jian. The curved blades eventually appeared during the end of the eighth century where the important process of forging swords was utilized to produce such pieces.

Chinese Swords

China has a long and rich history of blades and these dates all the way back to the Bronze period. During the said era, these weapons have been traced back to the earliest bronze daggers that were produced during the Shang dynasty. During the middle of the third century BC, long bronze swords suddenly emerged then later, the Chinese swords developed and were made from wrought steel or iron. It was common for the Chinese swords to have a blade length of about seventy to a hundred centimeters, but there were definitely much longer swords that have been located. The iron swords of the Chinese were utilized in Japan from the third to the sixth century AD but were eventually replaced with the Korean and authentic Japanese swords by the mid-Heian period.

The Chinese also categorize their swords into two different types: the Jian and the Dao. The Jian swords feature a dual-edge while the Daos are commonly single-edged blades. Based on the Chinese’s culture, the Jian is considered as a gentleman or master’s weapon since these required considerable amounts of skill to actually wield and master the weapon. Broadswords that are single-edged are also referred to as the Dao, regardless of its size, and these are considered as part of the four primary weapons used for teaching Chinese martial arts. Steel swords of the Chinese first appeared during the later part of the Zhou dynasty, yet these were not widely utilized until the period of the Han dynasty during the third century BC.

Asian Swords for Sale

The creation of replica swords originates from the nineteenth century’s historicism wherein today, modern replicas of the Asian swords range from the cheaper factory-produced pieces to the exact copies of the blades. In this day and age, Asian swords and other pieces are still utilized for various martial arts, decorative, and for training purposes; and aside from the Asian swords, other pieces that utilized today include the saber, shortsword, machete, and the scimitar. For those who are searching for weapons to add to their growing collection of classic pieces of Asian swords, one can find the right weapon in various online weapon shops. Aside from the Asian swords, they also offer Japanese swords for sale and Chinese swords for sale which are available as decorative and fully functional pieces.