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Date Published: 2022-01-05

Types Of Short Swords


Types Of Short Swords

By Adelia Ladson

The earliest swords that have ever been discovered were found in Turkey, dating all the way back to 3,300 BCE. The arsenic-copper alloy weapons are short swords and, since the Bronze Age, short swords have been used worldwide.

What Characterizes A Short Sword

Like long swords, a short sword can be found in a variety of styles with a variety of blade profiles. The main characteristic that defines them is that, typically, they aren’t more than two feet in overall length. Throughout history, soldiers have used them on the battlefield for close combat. They are built to be used one-handed, as many time they were paired with a shield or used with one in each hand. Different periods of time and civilizations gave them unique designs. Here are the five most notable short swords.

Medieval Short Sword

When you think of Medieval times, it’s the massive, opulent broadswords, carried by knights, that come to mind but not everyone could afford a sword of that caliber. The average foot soldier carried a simple, unadorned short sword that was most likely made of iron instead of steel. The Middle Ages Warrior Short Sword is a replica of the weapon that might have been carried by a common soldier. It has a sharp stainless steel blade so that you get the best of both worlds with display and functionality. The cross-guard and hilt are a grey metal-alloy, and the black, ridged grip is TPU. The 22 1/2” overall short sword can be stored and carried in its black scabbard, which features leather wrapping.

Tanto Sword

The tanto is a short sword that was part of the traditional Samurai daisho, which was the array of weapons that was carried into battle by the Japanese warriors. The daisho also included a katana and a wakizashi. The tanto was the last resort back-up weapon for the Samurai but it was also used as a cutting tool. The Kojiro Crimson Tanto Sword is a premium example of the Japanese short sword. It has a has a hair-splitting sharp, 1045 carbon steel blade, extending from a polished brass habaki and an intricately crafted tsuba. The hardwood handle is wrapped in genuine ray skin and crimson red cord-wrap. The pommel complements the intricate design of the tsuba. The just over 15” overall tanto sword slides smoothly into a crimson red, lacquered wooden scabbard. This is a truly eye-catching masterpiece!

Gladius Sword

Used by Roman soldiers, the gladius is a short sword with a wide blade profile that tapers to a point. As it was perfect for close-quarters combat, it was also used by the gladiators in the Coliseum games. Combat Commander has taken the traditional gladius design and given it a modern update with their Gladiator Sword. The full-tang blade is made of 1060 high carbon steel with a tough, black coating, making it a powerful weapon. The tactical TPR handle is rubberized to give you a secure grip in all environments. It comes with a reinforced nylon sheath and is exactly two feet in length. Combat Commander is definitely your go-to for tactical, high quality weapons that will back you up!

Falcata Sword

The lesser known falcata is a short sword that was used by the Iberian tribes of ancient Hispania and was highly prized by the legendary Hannibal, who equipped his troops with it to battle the Romans. This short sword has a very distinctive blade profile that has a concave edge close to the guard and a convex edge close to the point. The design makes it capable of delivering a blow like and axe while maintaining the cutting and penetrating power of a sword. The hilt also has a very distinctive look with a hook-shaped grip. Windlass Steelcrafts is known for its exceptional reproduction weapons and their Falcata Sword is a stunner. It has a solid, brass hook-handle with intricate engraved patterns and its polished finish makes it a light-catcher. The devastating blade is premium 1065 high carbon steel and it’s over 2” in width. The 25 1/4” overall falcata sword comes with a leather scabbard that has brass hanging rings.

Sword Cane

Markedly different from the short swords above but considered still a short sword because of its length when drawn, the sword cane is usually underestimated. It really became a popular fashion accessory for gentlemen during the 18th and 19th centuries in Europe. This was because it was becoming politically incorrect to carry a sword out in the open. So, the cleverly hidden short sword became the “thing”. The Gil Hibben Old West Sword Cane is both traditionally stylish and fully-functional with a just under 15”, 3Cr13 stainless steel blade with diamondback file-work. The short sword can be drawn from its wooden shaft with just the push of a button. It can be wielded with a walking cane style chrome, cast metal handle that features a gold-plated inlay. With a sword cane, you’re actually getting two weapons in one because the handle can also be used as a club.


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