15 Lies About Swords You Probably Believe Because of Movies

It’s the coolest, most popular weapon and/or tool ever invented. Every hero worth their salt has one. We’re sure you can name at least five epic blades off the top of your head. And yet, pervasive as swords are in popular culture, we barely know anything about them. Oh yes, we think we know a lot -- but much of that is wrong. That’s what happens when you get your facts from movies, traveling bards, or websites that aren’t Cracked.

But we’re here to fix that. Here, let us hone your knowledge with these edgy facts.

15

Katanas aren't really all that kick-ass. All the fastidious metal-folding by the swordsmith wasn't to make katanas awesome - it was to compensate for the low-quality steel available to forge them.

More: 6 Things Movies Get Wrong About Swords (An Inside Look)

14

Sword fights weren't all about the sword. Yes, you'd try to strike your opponent with your blade but you'd also grab at them, punch them, and kick them. The idea that these were dirty tricks comes from the 18th-19th centuries.

Source: The Association for Renaissance Martial Arts

13

Grabbing the blade isn't always a bad idea. Historical fighting manuals include half-swording techniques, where you grab the blade for a stronger thrust, or to use your sword as a hammer.

Source: Skallagrim on YouTube

12

You really shouldn't carry your sword on your back. Unless the sword is really short (shorter than your arm), you will just be unable to draw it. All you'll get is a fully outstretched arm for your foe to hack at, and no means to defend yourself.

Source: FightWrite

11

A claymore isn't a two-handed greatsword. Historically, the term claymore referred to a sword with a basket hilt used by Scottish soldiers. The word only started meaning a two-handed sword in Victorian times.

Source: Keith Farrell

10

Rapiers aren't light, nimble swords. Inigo Montoya makes his sword look pretty much weightless, but historical rapiers are in the same weight range as medieval longswords- about 2.5-4 pounds.

Source: Arms & Armor

7

Swords were never quenched in living people. ine 1319 lons 9s De Stick soft, glowing-h hot metal into a bone- filled person, and chances are it'll bend. Even if it doesn't, you'll get an uneven cooling, resulting in a crappy sword.

More: 6 Things Movies Get Wrong About Swords (An Inside Look)

6

Sai aren't small swords. Sai don't have a sharp edge. They're blunt weapons, used to bludgeon people or defend yourself against other people's swords.

Source: Technology Org

3

Sword duels didn't work like in movies. Block too many swings with the edge of your blade, and you'll end up with a blunt, broken sword. That's why medieval and Renaissance fighting manuals devote exactly zero time to such parries.

More: 5 Weapon Myths You Probably Believe (Thanks to Movies)

2

Iron swords didn't replace bronze swords because they were better. There wasn't much of a quality difference between bronze and iron weapons. Iron swords, however, were much easier to make, as iron ore was readily available everywhere.

Source: MartialArtSwords.com

1

Swords don't go schwing when you draw them. To get that dramatic sound, you'd need a metal sheath- -and not minding that all the scraping will blunt your edge. Drawing from a leather or wood sheath barely makes any sound.

Source: scholagladiatoria on YouTube