Cladiach-mor (Claymore): This deadly weapon was developed for use
in the hills of Scotland by the kilted Celts. Ranging from almost five and
one-half feet in length to six and one-half, this is a one and a half hand
sword, but was commonly used with both hands. Not quite as heavy or as long
as the Great Swords that were based upon the design, the cladiach-mor was, and
is, still quite deadly in the hands of a skilled user.
Epée: A thin blade, used primarily for thusting, this sword
is heavier than a foil and far less flexible. A fencing weapon, primarily, but
with a larger hand guard.
Estok: A sword with a very long and narrow blade intended solely
for thrusting. It is completely lacking in sharp edges.
Falchion: Usually considered a broad curved single-edged blade, this
sword features a blade that is wide near the point, with the back joining the
edge in a concave curve.
Flamberge: A great sword with undulating or waved edges. Its name
comes from the French word for "flame". However, it does not refer to
the later usage of "flamberge" as a special rapier type.
Foil: A thin, flexible swordblade used only as a thrusting weapon.
It is essentially a fencing weapon with a very small, round guard.
Grand Shamsheer: Comparable to the Japanese No-Dachi, this weapon
has a curved cutting blade not very suitable for thrusting but excellent for
use of a draw cut. Has but a single edge.
Great Shamsheer: Like the Grand Shamsheer, but somewhat
Great Sword: A very long, heavy, straight, wide blade, double-edged
sword. Can be used for cutting or thrusting, although its primary use was for
cutting due to its weight and the momentum of the blade. These factors are also
what made it very difficult to change the direction of a blow once begun.
Katana: A long sword, the sword of the samurai, the symbol of his
caste. No samauri is ever seen without his katana and wakizashi, collectively
known as daisho. It is slightly curved, classically ending in a chiselled point,
though there have been katana found with a pyrimidal point. It is forged from
mulitple folding of a soft and hard metal, providing a strong, yet flexible blade
that holds its keen edge. The length of the pommel differs depending on the social
climate. During times of peace, the pommel is short, more difficult to use, yet less
cumbersome in an obi. During times of war, the pommel is longer, providing more
leverage on the blade, but also making it more difficult to carry. The total length
of the weapon rarely ever exceeds three feet in length.
Khopesh: An odd Egyptian weapon, it has about six inches of handle
and quilions with a sickle-shaped blade. The blade is straight for
about two feet then curves into a sickle shape, is very hard to use
and very hard to recover when a swing has been overextended.
Long Sword: Commonly referred to as the 'standard sword'.
Which is actually incorrect, from a historical viewpoint. The actual
standard sword issued to the common foot soldier was the short sword,
being as the shorter blade was easier to train with and master within
a formation, especially with the use of a shield. The European long
sword ranges from four feet to five feet in length and can range stylisticly
from the classic barbarian broad sword with a width of three fingerwidths
(approximately two and one-half inches) and a gradual tapered tip, all the
way to the slender inch wide blade of the gentleman's long sword with
its hard forced triangular tip. Though the true long-sword was typically
designated as a single hand weapon, its hilt was quite often long enough
to accomidate both hands, making it better known as a hand-and-half weapon.
Manople: A short sword affixed to a hand and wrist gauntlet. The blade
of this weapon is approximately two and one-half feet in length with two ten
inch blades to either side.
No Dachi: Heavy curved sword traditionally twenty-five percent longer
than the ordinary sword blade. Quite often this weapon had to be carried over
the shoulder. See also Great Shamsheer.
Rapier: The gentleman's weapon of choice. A long, (sometimes very long)
stiff blade which was used primarily for thrusting. Some had double-edged blades
for slashing as well as thrusting. Most had elaborate guards.
Sabre: A sword with a slight curve, single-edged. Intended for cutting,
this sword can also be used, albeit awkawardly, for thrusting. Modern examples
are used cermonially only. May have an elaborate hand-guard.
Scimitar: The bastardization of shamsheer, this is originally an Arabian
weapon. It is a strongly curved sabre-like blade with a single edge.
Short Sword: The blade most commonly used by foot soldiers during
the 'Dark Ages' is almost a smaller version of the European long sword.
Generally two to three feet in length, it's usage ranged from the secondary
weapon of bowmen during the Middle Ages to the weapon favored in use with
a shield. Sometimes the variants on this weapon is a slightly curved double-edged
blade or a spilt blade for ensnaring, and hopefully breaking, an opponent's weapon.
Shotel: A very long, double-edged blade curved almost to a half-circle. It
is an extremely awkward blade to learn and use. However, it can be used to strike over
or around a shield.
Swordbreaker: A weapon with a short heavy blade with many teeth on the back
designed not only to ensnare an opponent's blade, but also to snap it.
Sword cane: A two to three foot long cane or crutch with holds a one and one-half
foot to two and one-half foot, thin swordblade concealed within.
Terbutje: A odd weapon that most would not consider a sword, though it is. It is
a wooden weapon with shark's teeth lashed to both sides to create a ripping, slicing edge.
Though completely useless for thrusting, it still isn't something you want to see coming
Wakizashi: A short sword, the companion piece to the katana. Together they are
referred to as daisho.