Sword Anatomy - Parts of a Sword Described
Posted by Wholesale Blades on 10/7/2022 to Swords
It is probably true that most of us have been fascinated with swords since childhood, but I am sure that we are not familiar with their basic parts. If you want to be a good sword fighter or at least a collector, you need to understand the anatomy of swords.
When purchasing a sword, it is important to first learn the basic components. To help you better understand the functions of each part of a sword, I'm going to walk you through its parts.
Primary Parts of a Sword
A "sword" is defined in common usage as any straight-cutting weapon that has been designed for slashing and stabbing. This can be further divided into two types:
The first is the longsword, which is a European weapon that was used in wars from about 600 to 1650; this sword is associated with the knights of old and their famous duels. The second type of sword is the short sword, which is a more recent design and includes the bayonet and other fighting knives.
The blade is the sharpened portion on the end of the sword. The hilt is the handle or sword guard. The scabbard covers and protects metal blades and aids in carrying real swords while they are not in use.
The first part of a sword is called the "hilt" this refers to either a grip or pommel which attaches to a handle or tang and may be used to strike an opponent; it also protects the user's hands from enemy contact.
A blade extends from one end of this hilt, sloping downward towards an edge on its cutting side that has been shaped by grinding, honing, polishing, etching, and whetting into proper sharpness for fighting purposes.
The second part of a sword is called the "blade" this refers to the metal which extends from the hilt and provides the cutting ability. The blade is usually rather short so that it can be easily wielded by one hand.
Whereas a dagger is almost always used with two hands (the thumb wrapped around the hilt and the fingers grasping either side of the blade), a sword is generally held one-handed, with the other hand on guard to protect oneself against attack in close combat.
The third part of a sword is called "the scabbard", also known as a "sheath". This protects the blade when not in use by keeping it dry and clean. In addition, it provides a place to store and carry or sheath the sword when it is not in use (most often when not in close-quarters combat).
Scabbards are made from a number of materials, including leather, wood, metal, plastic, and others. They may be plain or decorated but almost always provide protection for the blade.
Other Parts of Swords in Detail
In fencing, the sword player needs to know parts of the sword so that they can properly maintain it and fight efficiently. It's important for a fencer to understand the basics of their weapon before they can start to use it properly. The pommel is a weighted ball at either end of the grip on a sword or saber.
The tang is where the blade extends into and through its handle usually made up of leather wrapped in braided cordage, wire, or metal covering called a grip (or wire-wrapped in some cases). A cross-guard bar goes between the grip and guard; it prevents an opponent from using his or her own blade back against them by grabbing hold of this part.
The ricasso is part of the blade below the cross-guard. It's a flat area that helps improve grip and is guarded by a quillon, which is a metal extension of the guard. The areas where these parts meet on the sword are called joins.
The pommel can be used to catch an opponent's blade or to strike him or her. The pommel can be any shape and size so long as the player has enough grip on it and it fits on their sword correctly, though most pommels are circular in order to fit well in either hand. The pommel can be created out of any material that the player can hit with or ground up in a metal grinder, though most pommels are made from stone, bone, or metal.
The tang is the part of the blade that extends into and through the handle. It's usually made up of leather wrapped in braided cordage, wire, or metal covering called a grip (or wire-wrapped in some cases). Since this part of the sword will be covered when put together, it doesn't have to be fancy. The important thing is that it is well-fitted to either side of the blade and its handle.
If done properly, a fencer can repair or replace a broken or damaged grip fairly easily (the grip covers are much more costly than replacing them). A fencer may wish to replace the tang if they wish to do so but should be careful not to use a new one on a sword that has been taken apart. The tang is the part that allows the fencer's hand to firmly grasp the hilt.
The cross-guard (or quillon) bars between the grip and guard; it prevents an opponent from using his or her own blade back against them by grabbing hold of this part.
The crossguard (and sometimes the pommel) are used for defense. These parts protect the wielder's hands from an opponent's attack. The guard can be created from metal, wood, leather, or bone. The guard must fit snugly on the blade while protecting the wielder's hands. The grip is connected to the blade by a hilt.
The ricasso is part of the blade below the cross-guard. It's a flat area that allows for better grip, and it's guarded by a quillon, which is a metal extension of the guard.
The ricasso is a major point in the blade where it transitions from the blade to the tang that runs along its length. The ricasso of a sword is typically more curved than the main blade, so it's often found near hilts and guards.The pointy end of this type of sword is called the forte. The forte is articulated by an acute angle with which it forms a sharp corner with the ricasso, also called forming an arm--the arm being at an opposite side on either side of what's known as the "false edge.
The "high-guard" (or quillon) is the larger piece below the grip that helps prevent the opponent's blade from traveling upward. This part of the sword can be used in a number of ways, including to strike an enemy who is wearing mail or plate armor or to trap an opponent's weapon. The "low-guard" (or quillon) protects a fencer's hand if he or she should have to block an attack.
The areas where these parts meet on the sword are called joins. The join between the pommel and tang is referred to as a nutmeg join; this is the strongest type of join possible on a sword because it completely encloses both parts of the weapon in one piece. The other two types of join are tang and chape and are more commonly known as "belly" and "mantle."Tangs (meaning "a hole" in Japanese) may be found in a few types of swords, but they are often absent on Japanese blades. The Japanese sword is often considered one of the most versatile weapons known to man.As a result, there are many types of swords. For instance, some people believe that the katana is only used for cutting; however, it can also be used for stabbing (though not nearly as well since it doesn't have the piercing ability of a dagger).
Why You Should Know the Sword’s Anatomy?
The anatomy of swords is now clear to you. Swords consist of three main parts: the hilt, the blade, and the scabbard. There are four parts to all swords: the tang, the grip, the tang, and the sharp edge. Cross-guards, ricassos, fullers, and central ridges are optional parts.
Regardless of whether it's a Katana sword, a Longsword, or a Saber, understanding the anatomy of a sword will help you understand how it works.
Also, when you see a sword in a store or want to purchase a historical sword, you will be able to judge its quality more accurately since you will know what to look for. Seeing inferior sword craftsmanship will now be easier for you to identify.
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