Scimitar

195

2 in stock

Description of the Product

During the Early Middle Ages the Middle Eastern civilizations came into contact with the Turkic people of Central Asia, and scimitars, most likely evolved from Turko-Mongol sabers, were introduced to the area. The scimitar is a backward- curved, single-edged sword with a thick, unsharpened back edge. Although the scimitar is often thought as being exclusive to the “east”, in reality scimitars and straight swords existed side by side in the East and the West. Curved swords, sabers, are difficult to trace to their origin, and it is possible that their appearance in early medieval Europe as well as in the Middle East is a result of multiple discovery: similar circumstances resulted in similar evolution of weapons.

Contrary to popular imagery, the Crusades, especially the early ones, were most likely fought mainly with straight swords on both sides, and curved swords were found equally on both sides, Christian and Muslim. Scimitars became the weapon and symbol of the east later during the middle ages.

Eventually during the Middle Ages the scimitar became the weapon most characteristic of the Arab world, and the straight sword became synonymous with the “West”. This divergence was due to the weather, the economy and the wider culture, which resulted in a heavier armor being adopted in the west and a lighter armor in the Middle East, and the swords adapting accordingly. Although scimitars, as all sabers, were used by both foot and mounted soldiers alike, they were particularly effective, brutal and useful when swung from horseback against lightly armored opponents.

The scimitar appears in heraldry too, for example in the Finnish coat of arms of the Province of Karelia it is read as a symbol of the East. The area has been a battleground between the east and the west, the Swedish and Russian empires, for centuries, and in the coat-of-arms the two sword types, straight and curved, are locked in a perpetual fight. In the coat of arms of Finland a lion holds a western sword, whilst trampling the eastern scimitar.

The sharp back edge, like a clip point, which flares distinctively, almost cartoonishly, making the tip stronger and heavier is called yelman. Its advantage over most other sabers is that the point can be used in thrusting, although slashing would still have been far more deadly an option. With the added weight of the wide tip, the balance is such that it can handle almost like an axe. Scimitars like this made the mounted cavalry of Arabia some of the most feared warriors of their day.

The slightly oval hardwood grip is wrapped in soft leather, the cross-guard and the traditional hawksbill pommel are brass. With high quality materials the scimitar makes an excellent sword for the collector of ancient weapons, as well as an essential piece of equipment for Eastern dance practitioners. This sword comes without a sheath.

Made by Hanwei. Specs will vary slightly from piece to piece.

Overall length: 95.5 cm
Blade length: 78 cm
Handle length: 15.5 cm
Weight: 1.4 kg
Point of Balance: 23.5 cm
Width at Guard: 4.4 cm
Width at Tip: 1.5 cm
Thickness at Guard: 3.8 mm
Thickness at Tip: 4.0 mm
Blade material: 1566 carbon steel
Sharpness: Sharp
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