Fun and Interesting Facts about Swords

Here are some of the most interesting facts about swords.

Picture Of Traditional Arabic Decorated Sword
  • The first swords appeared in the late 3rd millennium BC in the Middle East.
  • The fuller (rounded or beveled groove or slot in the flat side of a blade) is not a “blood grove”, made to release pressure in the wound and allow the sword to be pulled out, as it is often thought, but it is made to lighten the blade and increase its strength and stiffness.
  • There are no all-purpose swords. Swords are made to serve intended purpose and to fit the tastes of the user of the sword.
  • First swords were very short and longer blades were not produced until the late Bronze Age when technology allowed for materials with higher tensile strength which gave swords that didn’t bend that easily.
  • In the Middle Ages, swords were made of steel and they were so sharp and heavy that they could cut a man in half.
  • The lower Rhine in Germany was one of the centers of sword manufacturing from the 6th century.
  • Toledo, in Spain was also one of the centers and was very famous for its steel swords. Legend says that, to test a Toledo sword, people would throw a silk handkerchief into and let it flow down onto the sword blade. A true Toledo sword would cut a handkerchief from the mere gravity.
  • Swordplay was a privilege reserved for the upper class and from 1600-1789, 40,000 aristocrats in Europe lost their lives in sword duels.
  • India was an exporter of a steel of high quality called Wootz steel.
  • The first to harden iron for blades by heating it with carbon, hammering it into shape, and then quenching it in water were Hittites.
  • During Middle Ages swords ranged from the smallest Broadsword that had 75 cm in length to the Greatswords that were 185cm long.
  • The samurai believed that in their sword lived their warrior spirit so they would often give names to their swords.
  • When the Frankish 'Ulfberht' blades reached high quality Charles the Bald (King of West Francia (843–77), King of Italy (875–77) and Holy Roman Emperor (875–77)) tried to ban the export of these swords because the Vikings were using them in raids against the Franks.
  • Bastard sword (or a Hand and a half sword) is a type of sword that is between one-handed and a two-handed sword in size. It can be held in one arm, with a shield for instance, but it has a longer grip so it can be held with two hands for a more powerful blow. It appeared in the 14th century, with the growing use of more advanced armor.
  • The first samurai swords had a straight blade and were imported from Korea and China. Only later they were made curved because they could be drawn faster from the scabbard and had a far more effective cutting angle.
  • Swords started disappearing as a military weapon when rifles became standard. Today, swords have status of either ceremonial weapon or sport equipment in modern fencing.
Picture Of Woman With Sword
Picture Of Sword On Red Background