Samurai Swords

Our swordsmiths offer you hand-forged samurai swords in sharpenable 1045 steel. Japanese Katana Sword, Tanto or Wakizashi, for decoration, training or cutting, discover our authentic samurai katana swords.

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Showing 1–12 of 17 results

Who are the samurai?

The epic saga of the samurai (侍), engraved in Japanese chronicles for seven centuries (1185 – 1867), reveals a fascinating evolution, shaping the entire framework of Japanese society. Among the jewels in their arsenal, warriors venerated above all a steel duo, two swords: the katana (刀), acclaimed as the ultimate blade, and the wakizashi (脇差), inseparable companion, thus merging in the harmony of the daishō.

Over time, the samurai vocation has mutated from a warrior caste to a failing conscript, eventually emerging as a prominent social stratum. This metamorphosis extends beyond their social role and the battlefield, from armor-clad cavalrymen to wealthy, powerful businessmen and kimono-clad masters. In this kaleidoscope of evolution, their clothing, protection and weapons have shaped a unique identity, testifying to their perpetual adaptation to the vicissitudes of time. Samurai respect the moral code of Bushido.

Katana: the samurai sword!

The katana, inseparable emblem of the samurai caste, transcends the simple status of a weapon to become a religious masterpiece. This Japanese sword, with its curved, razor-sharp blade measuring between 60 and 80 cm on one side, combines elegance with deadly effectiveness. Worn with majesty slipped into its scabbard at belt level (Obi), the cutting edge pointing skyward, it is worn in symbiosis with the Wakizashi, a smaller sword forming the Daishō (大小).

Much more than a simple cutting and stabbing weapon, the katana stands as a man-forged masterpiece, its razor-sharp edge revealing the subtle art of selective tempering, exemplified by the Hamon. During the feudal era, it established itself as a worthy successor to the Tachi, eclipsing its predecessors as early as the 15th century.

The nobility of the steel katana extends beyond the blade. The scabbard, called saya, is the katana sword’s protective shrine, while the guard, called Tsuba, is often a unique and intricate work of art. Meticulous details such as the menuki and tsuka-ito adorning the handle, the brass habaki, and the fuchi as well as the kashira (handle neck and cap) work in tandem to sublimate the Tsuka (pommel/handle), transforming each katana into an inimitable piece, steeped in history and craftsmanship.

The word katana is often mistakenly used to refer to all Japanese swords, such as the Tachi, Uchigatana or Shinkens, but each type of sword has its own name and unique properties.

Wakizashi

The wakizashi, the katana sword’s “younger brother”, is carried by samurai in addition to the katana, considered the main blade. Its blade is invariably long, measuring between 30 and 60 cm.

Tachi: The ancestor of the Katana

The tachi (太刀), predecessor of the katana, is a Japanese sword mainly in use until the 13th century, classified as a jōkotō (上古刀) representing swords predating the middle of the Heian era (794-1185). With a blade measuring around 70 cm, the tachi is distinguished by its more pronounced curvature, particularly marked on the initial third of its blade, thus differentiating it from the katana sword. The evolution of the tsuka (handle) can vary, with curves or straighter shapes depending on the era.
However, the tachi’s uniqueness lies not only in its physical properties. Its major distinction lies in its mounting and the particular way in which it is worn.

Training katana swords

Bokken

The bokken is a wooden replica of the katana sword, faithfully reproducing the emblematic shape of the blade. Its usefulness extends across various martial arts such as aikido (合気道) , iaido (居合道), dedicated to the art of drawing the sword, jodo (杖道), the way of the stick, kendo (剣道), sword practice, kenjutsu, the art of sword technique(剣術), and ninjutsu (忍術), mastery of perseverance. The bokken is thus the essential training katana sword.

Iaito

The emergence of Iaito dates back to around 1960, and was prompted by the new Japanese laws and regulations of the time. The creation of Iaito was a response to the need to comply with these standards while preserving the martial arts tradition. Since then, Japanese master artisans, steeped in the heritage of the Nihonto (Japanese sword), have developed unrivalled know-how, confining this expertise within the borders of Japan.

The Iaito, a training sword with no cutting edge, has been designed to suit disciplines such as Iaido, Aikido or Iaijutsu.

Its blade can be fashioned from aluminum, stainless steel, alloy or carbon steel, offering a variety of options to suit the needs of practitioners. Available in various blade lengths, the Iaito can be adapted to different models and user dimensions.

Beyond legal considerations, the Iaito becomes a safe and authentic way to practice katas, complementing the bokken needed to begin the art of swordsmanship. Shaped like a katana sword replica, the Iaito, dedicated to the mastery of Iaido and Iaijutsu, transcends its legislative origins to become a living symbol of commitment to the Japanese martial arts.

Shikomitsue

The Shikomitsue (仕込み杖), also known as the training cane, is a variation of the sword cane that has been brought to light by television and cinema, notably through productions such as Zatoichi (座頭市, Zatōichi).

Japanese Tanto

The tantō, a slightly curved single-edged Japanese blade, is distinguished by a blade size generally less than 30 cm, making it the third and smallest iconic samurai sword.

The tantō, categorized as a “Tanto” when its blade measures 30 cm or less, saw its first uses as a complementary weapon for samurai on horseback.

In the art of close combat, samurai targeted unprotected areas of their enemies’ armor. Beyond the battlefield, the tantō takes on symbolic significance at traditional Japanese weddings, given as a gift to the bride by her family. It is seen as sacred protection against evil forces.

This short dagger features a sharp blade on one side only, which may or may not be fitted with a guard (Tsuba). Made in the same forges as katanas, these tantōs are often forged in damascus steel, adding a touch of elegance to their fearsome functionality. Each thus embodies the essence of samurai duality, combining grace and power in a compact yet profoundly meaningful whole.

Ninjato: The ninja sword

Was the ninjato (忍者刀 Ninjatō) the preferred choice of ninjas, those black-clad stealth agents, as movie depictions, manga and video games have suggested for decades? Probably not. However, the imprint of the straight-bladed sword persists, albeit more as a collectible than as a martial arts training tool. These Japanese swords challenge our traditional vision of samurai facing ninjas with unconventional fighting methods.

Ninjas, trained in ninjutsu, a secret fighting technique, are primarily dedicated to spying missions. Like the Bushido of the Japanese samurai, ninjas adhere to a specific set of codes and are often associated with straight-bladed weapons, such as the “Ninjato”.

In the popular Western imagination, the ninja is often portrayed as a skilled martial artist using special weapons such as shurikens, claws and kunai to accomplish his missions. Thus, the mystery surrounding the ninjato persists, fueling a fascination that goes beyond historical reality, but continues to captivate minds thanks to its mysterious and legendary aura.

Budō: The art, philosophical and technical heritage of the Samurai

The Budō (武道), a samurai heritage inspired by writings such as those of Miyamoto Musashi, has become deeply integrated into Japanese culture, while Bushido remains the emblematic moral code of this warrior class. Budō, the Japanese martial arts that emerged between the 19th and 20th centuries, include such renowned practices as karate, judo, aikido, iaido and kendo, inspired by bujutsu (武術), warrior techniques used by samurais, such as jūjutsu, kenjutsu and aikijūjutsu (Jutsu (術) translates as “art” or “technique”).

These contemporary Budō differ from their ancestors, placing less emphasis on effectiveness in real-life situations than on individual self-improvement through the assiduous practice of techniques acquired during training. Today, the use of quality equipment, such as bokken (wooden weapons), sticks, practice knives, as well as carefully selected protective gear and outfits, offers optimal comfort for reaching the heights of your potential during this personal quest for physical and psychic mastery.

Frequently asked questions

How is a samurai sword called?

The traditional samurai sword is called a “katana”.

How much does a samurai sword cost?

The price of a katana sword can vary considerably depending on several factors, such as the blade’s quality, the type of materials used, the swordsmith’s reputation, and whether it’s a collector’s replica or a functional katana sword. Prices can range from a few hundred to several thousand dollars.

Why do samurai have two swords?

Samurai often carried two swords, a long one called a “katana” and a shorter one called a “wakizashi”. Together, these two swords form the “daishō”, a symbol of the samurai’s status and honor.

What’s the difference between a saber and a katana?

The difference between a saber and a katana lies in terminology and design. “Saber” is a generic term for a curved, single-edged sword, while “katana” is specific to Japanese tradition, referring to a Japanese sword with a curved blade, generally with a length of 60 to 80 cm. So, every katana is a type of sword, but not all swords are katana.