Chinese swords are one of the ancient swords mainly comprising of Jian and doa. These are famous for the sharp-edged blend which is usually 70 to 110 cm long although they are only found on occasions. The starting of Chinese swords was done by the Han dynasty. The dynasty introduced five major weapons namely the Jian, Dao, spear, halberd, and staff.
The legacy of the swords was later on carried by the upcoming next dynasties. The three kingdoms introduced the distinctive features in the swords like the difference in height and Chen, one person of that time, apparently wielded a great sword over two meters in length.
Five Types Of Swords In Chinese History
There are five types of swords in Chinese history, namely, Jian, Zhanmadao, Liuyedao, Wodao and Yanmaodao.
1. The Jian:
Over the last 2500 years ago, in china Jian was highly famous and popular among the people. Jian is a double-edged straight sword.
During the date to the 7th century BC during the spring and Autumn Period, this was the first time in history when the Chinese sources mentioned the Jian. That was the time of the earliest specimens being the Sword of Goujian.
These are specialized swords with long blades varying from 45 to 80 cm (17.7 to 31.5 inches) in length. These are commonly known as one-handed versions of blades.
The average weight of the Jian sword would lie in the range of 700 to 900 grams (1.5 to 2 pounds) including the blade length of about 70- centimeters (28-inch). There are also larger two-handed versions used for training by many styles of Chinese martial arts.
2. The Zhanmadao:
The Zhanmadao is a scimitar having a single long broad blade with a long handle which is suitable for two-handed use.
During the time of 1702, it has used as an anti-cavalry weapon. The use of this has brought up in the Wu Jing Zong Yao Song Military Manual.
The 114 centimetres high, sharp and long blade with the 37 centimetres handles wrapped in two hands help in providing the easy and comfortable grip. The sabre is very straight but has a slight curve in the last half. It has become a surviving example including a sword which almost resembles like a Nagamaki in construction.
3. The liuye dao
The English name for the liuye daois is “willow leaf sabre” which is a common type of dao mostly used by military sidearm including both cavalry and infantry.
During the Ming and Qing dynasties, the sabre was unique and special in its features. The moderate curve with the length of the blade helps it in staying effective even after decreasing the thrusting ability. It helps in enhancing the power of cuts and slashes.
4. The yanmao dao
The yanmao dao, or "goose-quill saber", is a type of dao made in large numbers as a standard military weapon from the late Ming through the end of the Qing dynasty. It is similar to the earlier zhibei dao, is largely straight, with a curve appearing at the center of percussion near the blade's tip. This allows for thrusting attacks and overall handling similar to that of the Jian, while still preserving much of the dao's strengths in cutting and slashing.
5. The wodao
The wodao is literally "sword/knife of the Wo people from the Ming Dynasty. It is influenced by Japanese sword design; It almost likes like a Tachi or Odachi. Exactly like them, it has a handle which is 25.5 cm long, with a gently curved, sharp-edge blade with a length of 80 cm.
Most people think that wodao is inferior to Chinese weaponry at the time. But this is a misconception as people think that the wodao was when placed against the Japanese ronin. In reality, the battles were quite one-sided in the Ming Dynasty's favor.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q1. What were the traditional names of Chinese swords?
Ans: The conventional names were usually Jian and Dao. A Jian is a fast double-edged sword. Whereas, Dao is mostly single-edged swords passed on by the song dynasty. In modern times, Jian is still referred to as swords. But Dao is referred to as a knife.
Q2. Why there is a hole in the Chinese swords?
Ans: The Chinese swords usually have a hole as they are intended for real use. The hole is usually small enough and blades are made strong and sharp.
Q3. Is Katana Chinese?
Ans: No. they are not. They belong to the Japanese culture. A katana is a long, single-edged curved blade having a circular or squared guard that enables both hands to hold it firmly. It was by the samurai of ancient and feudal Japan.
Q4. What kinds of swords Zuko used?
Ans: Dual Dao swords or broadswords are forged with metal and were used as a weapon by Zuko during his banishment. They can also be used individually as single-edged swords. Broadswords have been seen in the Earth Kingdom and the Fire Nation.