The Japanese Katana, historical background info


The Japanese Katana (aka Samurai swords) has been in existence for thousands of years and is a heavy part of the Japanese culture. It’s existence has been known to display honor, and its service has continued with reverence and respect for this weapon. Coupled with the use of martial arts has branded the sword to be the ultimate fighting weapon.

War played a major part in Japan’s history and the people were always developing new types of effectively weapons, and protection armor. Their early weapons mainly consisted of bows, arrows, and swords, along with protective helmets and whole body armor and this helped to reduce the amount of injuries and fatalities throughout the wars they endured. Japan’s history spans back to thousands of years. The history of the emergence of the Samurai sword during the war battles for land that was between three tribes such as the Minamoto, Taira and Fujiwara during the 9th and 12th centuries A,D.

The Samurai people were known for their expert fighting skills through being able to fight while riding on horseback and on the ground. It was found that they practiced their battle strategies in an armed and unarmed practice scenarios. They focused on fighting using a bows and arrows with good precision in aiming and meeting the target. Throughout the 12th and 13th century they began to focus more on using swords to fight instead of using the traditional bow and arrow battle equipment such as the the spears and a weapon called the naginata. The use of the swords allowed for the knights to fight in close combat. The creation of the Samurai swords were during the period of 11th to the 13th centuries and in this time and age are priceless collectibles.

The Samurai people carried two types of swords which are the diasho, a shorter kind of sword that is between 12 to 24 inches in length and the other is a daito-katana sword which is a longer sword and measured more in 24 inches in length.

The Samurai people named their weapons as they felt that it embodied a soul of being warrior.
The Samurai sword is designed with an intent to be a sharper and tougher sword and has a curved blade. It is made with a combination of iron and carbon metals. The swordsmith focuses on using hammers, along with fire and water in order to shape the sword into the proper needed shape. The sword’s strength and sharpness is able to cut through all bones of the body. It easily became the most popular sword to use during on foot battle.

The Samurai people were known to be well respected warriors in ancient Japanese culture. The Samurai swords were a part of their wardrobe and in many ways were expected to wear it wherever they went. It was not only considered a weapon but also is related to the symbol of pride, and honor. The swordsmiths or blacksmiths were those that fit of noble standards and high class standing because they crafted these powerful swords that were the essential importance of the Samurai warriors.

Japan’s ancient history of the Samurai sword shows how the warriors were very much spiritually connected to their weapons and became one with their swords while fighting in the war battles.