sawtooth sword

Sword typology and Edge Weapons forms of the Chinese Empire and related cultures with an emphasis on their relationship to Swordsmanship.

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Gen_Dog
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sawtooth sword

Post by Gen_Dog » Wed Sep 01, 2010 11:35 am

Does anyone know the history of this type of Chinese sword? I didn't know that they even existed.
aug2010_shows 00521.jpg
one handed Chinese sawtooth sword
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aug2010_shows 004.jpg
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Nik
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Re: sawtooth sword

Post by Nik » Thu Sep 02, 2010 2:29 pm

Why would someone in old times invest a lot of work to weaken and damage the blades edge like this ? Takes time, weakens the structural integrity, may lead to tears destroying the sword, and does not have any value. With a bit of luck you find examples of ceremonial use somewhere, but I haven't seen this before.

Scott M. Rodell
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Re: sawtooth sword

Post by Scott M. Rodell » Thu Sep 02, 2010 4:06 pm

Gen_Dog wrote:Does anyone know the history of this type of Chinese sword? I didn't know that they even existed.
They didn't exist, this is a modern fake... they make all kinds of weird stuff to sell tourists these days. As NIk pointed out, such knockes only weaken the blade, there's no reason to send the time & effort required to forge a sword only to render it useless...

Gen_Dog
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Re: sawtooth sword

Post by Gen_Dog » Sat Sep 04, 2010 5:34 pm

Thanks for the reply info. It does seem more for cerimonial use than a true weapon. I found it on Ebay, years ago, for $40, from a Chinese site that doesn't exist anymore. It seem like it was pretty trashed when I got it and removed much of the dirt and corrosion to get a better look at it.

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Peter Dekker
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Re: sawtooth sword

Post by Peter Dekker » Mon Sep 06, 2010 3:08 am

Although it may have looked old, it is most certainly a reproduction.

There were ceremonial jian indeed, but usually they looked much like functional jian but with the addition of symbolic decoration.

Often they would be forge-folded just like functional jian, only lacking the final heat-treatment. This makes sense because many a blade develops fatal problems during heat treatment stage. Leaving the final heat-treatment out on ceremonial pieces increases the success rate and thus saves cost.

I'm afraid that your example sprung recently from the fantasy of a reproducing company. They have their ways of aging swords, some produce pretty good-looking patinas with the use of acids.

Apart from the blade another hallmark of modern work is the decoration of the fittings. Older stuff in this style, even the lower quality ones, would have deeper cut details in the guard. Often a combination of casting, chiseling, and engraving would be used to get to this effect. The fittings on your example appear only cast.

$40 isn't bad at all for something like this though.

-Peter
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Willing is not enough, we must do.


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Antique Chinese Arms & Functional reproductions

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Peter Dekker
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Re: sawtooth sword

Post by Peter Dekker » Mon Sep 06, 2010 3:48 am

Here an example of an antique guard in this style. This is a comparatively high quality example, note the deep relief and well-defined shapes. Lower quality work of the time would have about as deep relief, only chiseled out in a rather coarse fashion.

Image
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Knowing is not enough, we must apply.
Willing is not enough, we must do.


-Bruce Lee

http://www.mandarinmansion.com
Antique Chinese Arms & Functional reproductions

http://www.manchuarchery.org
Fe Doro - Manchu Archery

Nik
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Re: sawtooth sword

Post by Nik » Mon Sep 06, 2010 7:25 am

Hello Peter, where is this sword from ?

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Peter Dekker
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Re: sawtooth sword

Post by Peter Dekker » Mon Sep 06, 2010 9:52 am

It is a Chinese short sword. I sold this one a while ago through Mandarin Mansion, it was a consignment of one of my clients. I'm not sure but I believe he bought it at a U.S. auction.

It has a rather early blade with very clear demarcation of the hardened edge, much like you see it on some Japanese swords. The forge folding was rather subdued, almost invisible. It was probably early Qing or late Ming, according to Philip Tom who restored it. The fittings were of composite origin, although the hilt fittings seem to be of a set that belonged to eachother and ranks among the better stuff of this style made in the 19th century.

Although a duanjian it wasn't one of those very light ones we encounter so often. It was hefty for its size with a relatively thick blade, it felt like a good weapon. There was one cut in the edge, probably caused by another sword.

-Peter
Knowing is not enough, we must apply.
Willing is not enough, we must do.


-Bruce Lee

http://www.mandarinmansion.com
Antique Chinese Arms & Functional reproductions

http://www.manchuarchery.org
Fe Doro - Manchu Archery

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