Types of Swords

A sword collecting guide for beginners

To list down all the different types of swords could possibly take a long time and a long read. First, because there are possibly hundreds of named and unnamed swords under various categories. More so, each sword definitely has a historical value that is worth to be searched and known.

True, they can be literally countless, so to mention a few, here are types of sword description for the collectible swords that will be very helpful in sword collecting for beginners.

Geographical origin:

African sword1. African Swords

In Africa, tribes used different weapons for self-defense and hunting. Though spears, axes, and knives are most common to the African natives, they also used swords. Egyptian swords are first example of swords of Africa with Khopesh as the most popular. The Khopesh is an ancient sword symbolizing authority. Pharaohs would bring this type of sword in their grave.

Another example of African swords is the Flyssa which is a traditional sword of the people of Morocco from the tribe Kabyles. Their blades could range from 12 – 38 inches long.

An Ida is a sword of the natives of West Africa called the Yoruba people. This sword was always carried by their local soldiers. Among the types of swords in Africa, this is known to have the best quality in terms of cutting ability.

Dao sword2. Asian Swords

Asian swords can be few of the most sought after swords in the industry among sword enthusiasts. For one they have unique and exotic appeal that is why any collector will be driven to grab their own piece of the sword. The inclination of Asians towards martial arts explains their widespread use of swords, daggers, and sticks as weapons. Here are the most well-known Asian swords:

The Katana sword is a Japanese sword that is also more commonly referred to as a Samurai sword. This type of sword has a curved, slender, single edged blade. Always been a dramatic symbol of Japan from the olden times to the present, this sword is recognized for being a representation of a samurai Spirit. It is known to be the only sword with the most outstanding cutting ability and beauty.

Masamune swords made by the best swordsmith of the Japanese sword history, Masamune are renowned for its excellent quality despite the impurity of metals during his time. Aside from that, Masamune swords are also considered holy swords.

The Chinese sword Dao is mainly used in slashing and often in chopping. Because of the shape and size of its blade, it is called in English as a broadsword. Also named as The General of All Weapons, this sword type is one of the four major weapons used by the Chinese.

claymore3. European swords

Europe has a lot of variety of types of swords as well – from those medieval swords and ancient swords to the swords that the royals still use today. 

The claymore is a two-handed sword used by the highlanders of Scotland during the medieval period to the early modern era. On the other hand, it may also refer to the basket-hilted broadsword from the 16th century which is still used today by regiments of the British Army.

Some other types of European swords may include foils and rapier swords used as civilian swords and in fencing. Most ancient swords such as Greek swords and Roman swords also belong in this category.

4. American swords

There may be American swords as well. However, the collectible swords of American origin like are mostly presentation swords which are not intended to be battle ready swords. Examples for good display swords are the antique US Civil war swords.

Other types of swords or those categorized according to their structure:

1. Longsword are European swords using during the medieval era to Renaissance period with lengthy sword handle or hilt. The length of its blade could reach 35 inches.

2. Short swords are those swords of the earlier times when the materials (such as copper) that were used by the ancient people could not stand with a longer length.

3. Saber swords are single edged swords which are distinctive with its curved blade

4. Bayonet comes with a French origin as it was named after Bayonne, France. It is a blade or a dagger put at the tip of a rifle and is used as weapon. Some of these kinds were also used by the Japanese when they conquered some countries.

Fantasy swords

Fantasy swords are interesting swords to collect especially for the young at heart enthusiasts. One very famous fantasy sword is the King Arthur’s legendary sword – the Excalibur sword. According to some stories, this is the sword that King Arthur pulled out from a stone and made him king. There are also the Final Fantasy swords that come from a popular Japanese videogame and dragon swords that are identified for their unique designs and mythical look. Most of the time, these are only ornamental swords.

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