Zhanmadao(斬馬刀) Type Infantry Anti-Cavalry Saber Place of origin Han Dynasty, China Production history Variants Possible Changdao Miao dao Wodao Zanbato Specifications Length Approx 150 cm Blade length Approx 120 cm Blade type Single edged, straight for most of the length, curving in the last third. Hilt type Two handed
The zhanmadao is a sabre with a single long broad blade, and a long handle suitable for two-handed use.
Surviving examples include a sword that might resemble a nagamaki in construction; it had a wrapped handle 37 centimetres long making it easy to grip with two hands. The blade was 114 centimetres long and very straight with a slight curve in the last half.
The sword may have been the inspiration for the Japanese Zanbatō as both are written with the same characters, and have been said to have been used for killing the horse and rider in one swing.
In the Western world, swords of an equivalent size such as the Zweihänder may have been used to batter into formations of pikemen or to cut out the front legs of a galloping horse–though the historical accuracy of this information is also a matter of debate.
- ^ "The Mongol Siege of Xiangyang and Fan-ch’eng and the Song military". deremilitari.org. http://www.deremilitari.org/resources/articles/hanson.htm. Retrieved 6 November 2010.
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