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Common Sword Types by The-8-Elements Common Sword Types by The-8-Elements
Using Wikipedia and my own knowledge, I created this guide for swords. There are multiple variations for each sword (e.g. rapiers may have different hilt styles), however, I should have captured the essence of each sword type in this guide.

There are a lot of older swords that I left off the guide (Ancient Rome and such) since I could not quite categorize them under a certain sword type. If there are any swords I left out, or if there are any inaccuracies, please feel free to point them out and I may add them in a future update.
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:iconbooksandbands729:
booksandbands729 Featured By Owner Oct 21, 2016  Student General Artist
Hmm.. What about a dagger, or does it depend on what kind?
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Oct 28, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Daggers are a class of blades shorter than swords so they are not swords by definition.  I could make a chart on daggers but they look pretty much the same.
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:iconbooksandbands729:
booksandbands729 Featured By Owner Oct 31, 2016  Student General Artist
Okay, and if you want you can create a chart ^^
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:iconmr-buenfang:
Mr-Buenfang Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2016  Student General Artist
Wow, this pretty useful for characters that uses swords lol.
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:iconsuperboltstrike:
superboltstrike Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
So that's the difference between a katana and ninjato. But shortswords and jians look the same aside from the hilt.
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Oct 6, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Pretty much.  I'll need to do more research to show the major differences.
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:icontsumugi-sensei:
tsumugi-sensei Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2016  Student Writer
bless you
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Jun 22, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Happy to be helpful!
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:icondragonlover219:
dragonlover219 Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2015  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
gladius should be wider and have large pommel, sry
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Dec 14, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Noted.  Thanks for the info.
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:icondragonlover219:
dragonlover219 Featured By Owner Dec 15, 2015  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
np, It just bothered me a bit, sorry
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:iconmiguel-neves:
Miguel-Neves Featured By Owner Nov 13, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Helped a lot :D
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Glad to be of service!
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:iconmicowolf30000:
micowolf30000 Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Hook sword! like the one Jet uses! (you know, that guy from the Last Airbender.
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Sep 30, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Yup.  And probably first popularized in Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon.
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:iconmicowolf30000:
micowolf30000 Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
yup.
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:iconpendragon-arts:
Pendragon-Arts Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Love this quick reference! Thanks!
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
You are welcome!
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:iconcharlene-art:
Charlene-Art Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you for this guide!
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
You are welcome!
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:iconguttc:
GutTC Featured By Owner Apr 11, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Oh wait, the Sabre is actually that curve?
Whoops! My historical study got the wrong way!
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Haha.  I hope you weren't thinking Lightsabers when making your study. =P
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:iconabkreilly:
ABKReilly Featured By Owner Feb 11, 2015
This was very informative. Thank you.
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
You're welcome!
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:iconvenneccablind:
VenneccaBlind Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
OH GOD! I Love this! This is so wonderful and informational. Thank you so much! The whole internet should see this.
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
You are very welcome!  I am glad it is helpful, even though it is not entirely accurate.  =P
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:iconminoana:
minoana Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2015  Hobbyist
Thank you for this!
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
You are very welcome!
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:iconlionsdisciple:
LionsDisciple Featured By Owner Nov 18, 2014

This is pretty good, but there are a few issues I have as a sword lover..

1st, there is no definite classification called “shortsword”. The word is used to describe any sword that happens to be short. A better thing to put here would be Arming Sword, which has a shape similar to that of a longsword, but in the size of the broadsword and a handle designed for one hand.

The Broadsword and saber and mostly good, although that saber is a REALLY curved version (most are less curved than that), and the way the pictures are done doesn’t represent the basket hilt of either very well.


There is no reason for a cutlass to be that thick. It’s literally just a short saber designed to give you more room to move inside the narrow passageways in a ship’s hull.


The claymore SHOULD be slightly longer than the longsword, and with a slightly shorter handle. This isn’t crucial, since there were versions that looked like this, but in general claymores are larger and longer than longswords.


The zweihander should have something to show that the area beneath the blade spurs are blunt and often wrapped in leather, the point being that you can move a hand above the cross-guards and grab the blade in that area for certain techniques.


There is no historical evidence that the ninjato/chokuto ever existed. It’s a total fabrication of Hollywood.


The Scimitar is not typical of that type of sword. Although there ARE scimitars that look like that, most are more curved and thicker (although not to the extent that you see in cartoons), That looks more like what I could call a Talwar. To that end, the handle should have a bit more of a curve as well.


There are some odd things with some weapons relative to others as well. The katana here has a blade almost as long as the longsword with a much shorter handle. Instead the handle should be almost the same length while the long-sword has a much longer blade.


Also, where is the viking longsword? The Egyptian Kopesh? The Celtic sword? The Indian Khanda? I mean, I don’t expect there to be every sword ever here, but there are some really big ones that have been left out while silly things like “shortsword” and Ninjato have been thrown in?

All in all, it's a really good reference, and is mostly accurate. But there are a few things that could really be adjusted. Most of my stuff is nitpicky (although I really do hold that shortsword and Ninjato do NOT exist as things in history), and I hope it doesn't sound like I'm lambasting you. Good job for the most part :)

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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
This has been the best and most informative comment I have ever received!  Thanks!

I would have loved to have all this information when making the graphic.  It is good to hear from a sword lover and now I am more motivated to make a more accurate graphic. I will try to include the ones people mentioned were missing.  You probably have some very valuable input too and I would love to hear it.  =)
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:iconlionsdisciple:
LionsDisciple Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2014
Awesome! Glad to be of help, and if you even need any input, I'd be more than happy to help you out.
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:iconilmadur:
Ilmadur Featured By Owner Nov 13, 2014
My favorite sword type is the longsword because the Middle Ages and LotR~
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:iconyourbestclownfriend:
YourBestClownFriend Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2014
The Zweihander, for when you wanna fight someone on cavalry but don't want to use a polearm.
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
And due to weight, you can probably bludgeon them to death too.
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:iconivan-typhlosion:
Ivan-Typhlosion Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I have a Black Nodachi. Yes I mean the blade is black. Well not completely. I know that the steel the sword is made from is Damascus steel which is steel folded over thousands of times. And the blade is very shape. I accidently made a small cut in a couch arm. But I promise its very small and its slightly bigger than the tip edge. Not here to ramble. Sorry about that. I love my Nodachi. Plus it was $200 at normal price but it was 75% off because they were clearing it out. I got the last one luckily. So is a Nodachi slightly shorter than a Chokuto? Cause its literally like a I have a black bladed version of the same Chokuto Sasuke Uchiha wields. Its got the same features sort of. If you want a picture I can show you.
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:iconzahng:
Zahng Featured By Owner Sep 29, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
I would also include the Egiptian Khopesh sword www.bronze-age-swords.com/Egyp…
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Cool!  Those are quite common in Egyptian-themed movies.  I will try to include one in the future.
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:iconzahng:
Zahng Featured By Owner Nov 17, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
Thanks :-) Really cool infographic btw :-)
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:iconjallarial:
Jallarial Featured By Owner Sep 13, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Wow, this is useful.
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:icongoninja:
goninja Featured By Owner Jun 16, 2014  Student General Artist
There are some inaccurases however in general you did good showing what the swords are supposed to look like.
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:iconminoana:
minoana Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2014  Hobbyist
Thnak you for this useful resource!
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:iconhergman:
Hergman Featured By Owner Jun 5, 2014
is there an uncommon sword list?
i would add the cinqueda

or even a "strange weapon" list?

i would put the lantern shield and the african throwing knife
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:iconthe-8-elements:
The-8-Elements Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
How about "crazy blades" list?  Those latter two are just pieces of metal with pointy bits poking out everywhere.  LoL.
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:iconhergman:
Hergman Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2014
of course :heart:
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:iconsoldier-ell:
Soldier-Ell Featured By Owner May 16, 2014
Very helpful.
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:icon1keeper4mother:
1keeper4mother Featured By Owner May 15, 2014  Professional Artist
Although technicaly not a sword, Cicero is slightly dissapointed the dagger gets no mention. *frowns*
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:iconwarriornun:
WarriorNun Featured By Owner May 14, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
THANK YOU :glomp:
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:iconfox-of-the-darkness:
Fox-of-the-darkness Featured By Owner May 10, 2014
What about Kukri's?
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:iconskarabog:
Skarabog Featured By Owner May 19, 2014  Student Traditional Artist
that's a type of dagger.
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:iconkota-king-1:
Kota-King-1 Featured By Owner May 10, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
fucking thank you!!! This is so damn helpful!
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