Sword

There are 12 types of Japaneses sword

The following are types of Japanese swords:

  • Chokutō (直刀?, “straight sword”): A straight single edged sword that was produced prior to the 10th century, and without differential hardening or folding.
  • Tsurugi/Ken (剣?, “sword”): A straight two edged sword that was produced prior to the 10th century, and without differential hardening or folding.
  • Tachi (太刀?, “big sword”): A sword that is slightly longer and more curved than the later katana. Tachi were worn suspended, with the edge downward.
  • Uchigatana (打刀?): A development from the tachi. A shorter, one handed blade. Worn with the edge upwards in the obi.
  • Katana (刀?, “sword”): A general term for the traditional sword with a curved blade around two to three shaku long, worn with the edge upwards in the obi. Developed from the uchigatana.
  • Ōdachi (大太刀?, “big big sword”)/Nodachi (野太刀?, “big field sword”): Very large tachi.
  • Nagamaki (長巻?, “long wrapping”): A sword with a blade much like that of a tachi or katana, but with a handle that is of about equal length to its blade.
  • Wakizashi (脇差?): A general term for a sword between one and two shaku long.
  • Kodachi (小太刀?, “small tachi”): A tachi that is between one and two shaku long. Kodachi were typically more curved than wakizashi and had a longer handle.It should be noted that there are other blades that are traditional Japanese blades, made in the same traditional manner and thus count as nihontō, but which are not swords. These include:
  • Naginata (なぎなた, 薙刀?): A polearm with a curved single-edged blade.
  • Yari (槍?, “spear”): A spear.
  • Tantō (短刀?, “short blade”): A knife or dagger. Usually one-edged, but some were double-edged.

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