Walk softly. And carry a big stick.

Today I thought I’d talk about a very old weapon. The good old stick. Yes. You know, your basic tree branch. Club. Truncheon. Baton. Night stick. Yep. A blunt impact weapon. Yes, yes, yes, I know its not a bladed weapon. But I thought it was worth a post, especially since I recently ran across a reproduction of an interesting feudal Japanese variation of the ubiquitous stick, in the form of a class of weapons called Jutte.

Ikkakuryu Jitte

Jitte (steel)
[view full size]

Jutte or Jitte (ten-hand) are, for all intents and purposes, short steel clubs. But they are very special clubs. They are the medieval Japanese equivalent to the modern day billy club, or night stick. And they were engineered to be used defensively against one of the more lethal weapons of the era, the equally ubiquitous sword.

Ikkakuryu Jitte (Wood Handle)

Jitte - Steel Club w Wood handle
[view full size]

As you can see, the Jutte (or Jitte) is basically a steel club with a single, forward facing prong, called a Kagi. Much like a Sai, except with only one prong. Incidentally, a Sai is also a form of club. Not a dagger. But I’ll reserve that discussion for another post. Back to Jutte. The kagi on the wooden handled jitte above is oversized, as it was designed for sword catching practice with thick bladed wooden swords called boken. In essence a Jutte could be used to block or parry a sword strike, and then the prong could be used to trap, or even break, an attackers sword.

The beauty of the Jutte was that it could be used to subdue both armed and unarmed attackers in a nonlethal way. You could say it was one of the first nonlethal tactical police weapons. (Heh.) It was a versatile and effective. I daresay they would be as effective today (if not a little more intimidating) as it was back in feudal Japan, if our modern police force were of a mind to use them.


12 Responses to “Walk softly. And carry a big stick.”

  1. 1 MoZZA
    September 7, 2008 at 11:51 am

    i like these juttes i always have they are very simplistic but its just like the common baton but with elegance

  2. September 8, 2008 at 1:17 am

    Honestly, truncheons are my second favorite weapon, next to knives… Simple, easy to use, easy to find, make, improvise… In fact I was into sticks long before I ever got into knives…

  3. 3 ChroniclerLoki
    October 6, 2008 at 10:56 pm

    He he he. Little video game women with big… Juttes, lol and if you think i’m being dirty i really can suggest a psychiatrist who can help you learn to avoid the dark spaces of my mind, sometimes even I find them scary and I have posted signs to keep visitors away. 8)

  4. October 12, 2008 at 9:17 pm

    LOL… I love big Juttes and I cannot lie… ROFL… 🙂

    Wait… Whut?

  5. 5 MoZZA
    November 12, 2008 at 7:32 am

    word of advice to all new comers… dont get high, listen to led zeps dazed and confused and browse through phyres blog…

    immensly scary stuff

  6. November 13, 2008 at 5:28 pm

    Actually, that sounds like it would be fun… 🙂

  7. 7 AJ
    November 16, 2008 at 4:04 pm

    heh sia, used to break the sword then stab them in the chest when there dassed…. >_>

  8. 8 MoZZA
    November 17, 2008 at 11:58 am

    nope, im pretty sure theyre juttes/jittes.

    im sure for a number of reasons, for instance: sai have double pronged crossguard where as this has one. it also has no point for stabbing.

    the jutte is basicallt a baton mainly for defense, however a heafty blow to the skull would be lets say unpleasurable.

    the sai was a piercing weapon designed to injure/kill

  9. 9 AJ
    November 30, 2008 at 10:06 pm

    heeh sia=sai my bad, suk at spelling

  10. 10 MoZZA!
    December 2, 2008 at 6:01 pm

    dude, it aint a problem. hell, even i knew what ya meant, and im a stoner XD

  11. December 8, 2008 at 4:37 am

    Actually the sai is also an impact weapon, Though it bears many similarities to a dagger, it was not originally designed deliver thrusting or puncture wounds.

  12. 12 TODO
    March 18, 2009 at 9:21 am

    I am looking for the baton currently used by the Japanese cops. They look kinda ASP ish but even badder ass. Extendable Tonfu – Jutte with no cross guard.

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