JianGu Sword

Chinese sword

Chinese Swords have a long history. Bronze swords have been traced back to the bronze daggers of the Shang period. Bronzelong swords suddenly appeared during the mid-third century BC. Later swords were made of iron or steel. These metals were wrought, never cast. Swords commonly reached a length of 70–100 cm, although longer swords have been found. Chinese iron swords were used in Japan from the third to sixth century AD, but were replaced with Korean and native Japanese swords by the middle of the Heian era.

Chinese group all swords into two types, Jian () and Dao (). Jian are dual edged and Dao are single edged.

----------------From Wikipedia

1, Bronze sword of the warring states – Zhan guo Jian

Bronze jian/sword are well developed at Earlier of Warring States Period, Appearance of the earliest laminated bronze jian where they utilize bronze with higher tin content for the cutting edges and bronze with lower tin content for the spine. It results in a sword with harder cutting edges and a more flexible spine to absorb shock. copper sulphides for anti-corrosion coatings on the bronze jian/sword.

Earliest iron and steel jian also appear, made by the earliest and most basic forging and folding techniques.

bronze sword

2, Bronze long sword of Qin dynasty

Bronze jian/sword become longer and the handle is extended to be long enough for two-handed use at Later stage of Warring States Period and Qin Dynasty. Use of chromium oxide as an anti-corrosion protective coating on the bronze jian/sword. Steel jian/sword get 1 meter or longer is continued.  

bronze long sword

3, Han Dynasty Bronze and Steel Jian/Sword.

Iron steel sword be used a lots in this period , Differential heat-treatment and Forge-welding/lamination and (using higher carbon steel for the cutting edge and lower carbon steels for the core or sandwich plates, depending on the design) implemented on steel blades, a standardized process for later Chinese blades for almost 2000 years.

The introduction of ring pommels on bronze and steel jian and dao ,typical style is Huan Shou DaoRing pommel sword, and polyhedron Jian sword,(octahedrons, hexahedron and  tetrahedral).

Use of white rayskin on the weapons' handle-grips introduced on Imperial Regulation blades

Han Dao

Han dynasty sword

Han steel sword

4, Tang Jian/Dao-sword,.

Swordmaking continues to progress in the Tang, earliest use of disc-shaped guards displaced ring pommels to better protect the hand in the middle Tang,

Export quality Chinese blades and transmitted Swordmaking skills(forge-welding/laminated construction, differential heat-treatment using clay, repeated forging and folding of sword blanks to enhance the quality of the steel(tamahagane steel), ridged cross-sections (consisting of two variants known to the Japanese as kiriha-zukuri and shinogi-zukuri)) toJapanin the Middle Tang.

Tang Dao

Tang Jian

5YanLing Dao(goose-quill saber) of Ming & Qing Dynasty

The YanMao Dao or YanLing Dao, or "goose-quill saber", a type of dao made in large numbers as a standard military weapon from the late Ming through the end of the Qing dynasty. It is similar to the earlier zhibei dao, is largely straight, with a curve appearing at the center of percussion near the blade's tip. This allows for thrusting attacks and overall handling similar to that of the Jian, while still preserving much of the dao's strengths in cutting and slashing. This style sword originates from Yuan dynasty(Mongol Empire), it is the leading style sword in followed dynasty of Ming and Qing.

Yan Ling dao(goose-quill saber)

Yan mao dao(goose-quill saber)

6, LiuYe Dao/Sword

The LiuYe Dao, or "willow leaf saber", a type of Dao that was commonly used as a military sidearm for both cavalry and infantry during the Ming and Qing dynasty. This weapon features blade narrow and thick and a moderate curve along the length of the blade. This reduces thrusting ability (though it is still fairly effective at same) while increasing the power of cuts and slashes. It was evolution from Yanling Dao/Sword, Liuye Dao and Yanling Dao is the leading sword style in Qing dynasty, so we also called it Qing Dao. Or QingYaoDao.

LiuYe Dao(Willow leaf saber)

7, NiuWei Dao/sword

NiuWei Dao or oxtail dao, A type of Chinese saber(Dao) of the late Qing Dynasty period. It was primarily a civilian weapon, as Imperial troops were never issued it

Broad blade, so we also called it broad sword.

Niu wei Dao(Oxtail sword)


The Jian is a double-edged straight sword used during the last 2,500 years inChina. In Chinese folklore, it is known as "The Gentleman of Weapons" and is considered one of the four major weapons, along with the Gun(staff),Qiang(spear), and theDao(sabre),it is exist in different period of Chinese history, no unified name. sometimes referred to as Wushu Jian(martial arts sword), Bao Jian, Longquan Jian, Taiji Jian(t'ai chi swords) etc.


Long Quan Jian

9, Da Dao/Chinese Sabre

The Dadao (大刀) (lit. Big Knife), one of the varieties of Dao or Chinese saber, is also known as the Chinese great sword. Based on agricultural knives, dadao have broad blades generally between two and three feet long, long Hilts meant for "hand and a half" or two-handed use, and generally a weight-forward balance.

The sword emerged from World War II, it was provided on Chinese Army. It is very simple, but very practical.

Da Dao

Referenced page from: http://www.samuraisword.com/glossary/index.htm

Learn More Glossary about Japanese sword blade, please click here.

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