12
Oct
07

A Dragon Naginata…

I ran across an interesting variation of a Japanese polearm today. Specifically, an unusual naginata.

Dragon Naginata

Dragon Naginata.
[view full size]

Naginata have an interesting history. They were traditionally intended to be used against opponents on horseback. Much like the European halberd, or pike. The naginata was so useful during the age of Japanese calvary, that they became a status symbol.

When the naginata was no longer useful as a battlefield weapon, the naginata was given to the wives and women of the Samurai class in order to protect the household while the Samurai were away at war. The naginata eventually because a status symbol for woman of the samurai class, becoming for Samurai women what the Samurai sword was for the male Samurai. A symbol of honor.

But all of that interesting history aside, I thought this particular design was interesting for a couple of reasons. First, the most common naginata design is essentially a modified mid sized sword on a spear shaft. This head of this naginata is actually closer in design to a broad sword, than a katana. Not completely out of left field, but not exactly standard naginata design either.

And another interesting difference is that the spine of the blade on this naginata has fins, for lack of a better word, which is equally unusual in a naginata, but not unheard of in a broadsword. Last, but not least, I liked the black treatment of the blade. Hey, it’s the details alright?

Dragon Naginata – [True Swords]

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7 Responses to “A Dragon Naginata…”


  1. 1 ladyofspiders
    October 13, 2007 at 10:24 am

    The naginata eventually because a staus symbol for woman of the samurai class, becoming for samurai women what the Samurai sword was for the male samurai. A symbol of honor.

    That is really cool, I had heard before, that it was the duty of the wives of the samurai to protect the home when they were away at war, which I thought was pretty neat.

  2. October 14, 2007 at 1:34 am

    Indeed, the women of the Samurai class were held to just as high standards of honor as the men. Though back in the day, there was technically no such thing as a female Samurai (as the term Samurai referred exclusively to men), there is even a story about a famous female Samurai warrior, renowned for her naginata skills, who actually formed and lead an army into battle. This was quite an impressive feat, considering the pervasive male chauvinism of the time.

  3. 3 CapnPervy
    October 23, 2007 at 8:03 pm

    i own this naginata! ^.^ its pretty great and the spines on the back would be technically gut-hooks. (i think that pretty self explanatory.) one of the best parts about it is the wooden blade sheath. it is black varnished with a dragon carved into it. I’ve actually been on the lookout for more weapons with this scabbard design. so far i have found a naginata with a more traditional blade, a tai chi sword, and a three piece katana set. all beautiful weapons, though quite hard to find.

  4. October 24, 2007 at 4:34 am

    The only thing though, is that this design actually runs counter to traditional naginata design. Thrusting weapons are usually slim and narrow in order to minimize blade drag/resistance. This is built more like a halberd than a naginata. Halberds were used for hooking and slashing, rather than piercing, so the spines on the back wouldn’t see much “gut wrenching” (excuse the pun) action.

  5. 5 MoZZA
    September 7, 2008 at 11:01 am

    its pretty cool. might make something similar but with a shorter stave thus making it more effective for close quarters

  6. September 8, 2008 at 12:52 am

    Yeah, it’s an interesting design. Actually of you cut the stave in half, it would look a lot like a design that is commonly called a Chinese war sword…

  7. 7 MoZZA
    September 16, 2008 at 12:36 pm

    yeah i thought that but i forgotted 😛 too much bud… again


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