*
*
Home
Help
Login
Register
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
July 18, 2019, 03:14:20 AM

Login with username, password and session length
Forum changes: Editing of posts has been turned off until further notice.
Search:     Advanced search
275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 158 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
Pages: 1 ... 7 8 [9] 10
Print
Author Topic: Sword myths, help me out  (Read 36854 times)
Andrew Mure
Member

Posts: 43


« Reply #120 on: July 06, 2004, 02:00:57 AM »

Here's another sword myth for you.

During the Middle ages Christians exclusively used straight swords whilst Muslims only used curved swords.

Actually in all major medieval conflicts between east and west such as the Crusades both the arming sword and scimitar were employed heavily by both sides to the level that one could expect to see a mix in an army. This is interesting in the context of the 'katana' debate as the Islamic kingdoms of the Holy Land possessed the much vaulted 'folding-steel' technique that supossibly makes the katana a 'super sword'. However if anything the invasion of the Franj (arabic term for westerner derived from the mainly French crusaders) prompted more saracens to start using wrought iron straight 'european' style swords. Certainly on the christian side enough Europeans were impressed by the technique of Arab swordsmiths to bring folding-steel back to Europe particularly Italy and Spain which gained a reputation towards the end of the Middle ages as master armourers. However though folding steel technique was used (long before Europe contacted Japan) to produce sabres and the much vaulted white armour, the straight wrought iron sword endured despite a suppossibly 'superior' means of sword construction being available to their smiths.

In conclusion before one claims that one means of sword construction is 'superior'  to another they should consider that the two techniques might be aiming for very different end results.
Logged
Eamon
Member

Posts: 32


« Reply #121 on: July 06, 2004, 07:28:05 AM »

Quote from: Vagabond Elf
I believe the blood groove story actually comes out of the Second World War, where American bayonets were badly designed and would get stuck in things very easily.  The problem was widespread enough that U.S. troops were actually trained to shoot the guy they'd just stabbed to jolt the bayonet free.

But I'll admit that's entirley anecdotal, not having seen a WWII U.S. Army training manual.


Dontcha just hate it when a bad guy gets stuck on your bayonet?  The worst is the blood in the barrel, 'cause then sarge really gets on your case for not cleaning your weapon?

Of course, the mythical truth of the blood groove and fuller is indeed to reduce the effort required to pull a weapon out of an enemy.  The 110 lb European broadsword was not good at cutting, so unlike the katana it needed a long blood groove because it would get stuck in people all the time.

As for the cutting ability of the katana, it is well knwon that in WWII that it was used against machine gun barrels all the time.  Japanese officers would run up to American machine gun and would hew with the katana and lop off the end of a machine gun.  The blade, unharmed by this effort, was then used against the Americans or against Sherman tanks.  So awesome was the blade that it was used to penetrate heavy armor of destroyers!  I heard a story once about how a Samurai in full armor rode out on his horse into the sea and cut open the side of a destroyer as it went by.  10 inches of steel went slice and the ship sunk in minutes!

Thats why the Japanese didn't have good tanks.  Because they knew a katana would cut right through it.  They should have realized that the Americans didn't use katanas!
Logged
Jake Norwood
Member

Posts: 2261


WWW
« Reply #122 on: July 06, 2004, 08:44:52 AM »

Oh, oh, the pain...

Incidentally, I got to handle one of those machine gun barrels that katanas are claimed to have hewn asunder this past weekend.

I've seen a lot of impressive cutting on both sides of the big continent...

nobody's cutting through one of those barrels. Nobody.

jake
Logged

"Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing." -R.E. Howard The Tower of the Elephant
___________________
www.theriddleofsteel.NET
Eamon
Member

Posts: 32


« Reply #123 on: July 06, 2004, 09:29:58 AM »

The thing about the ultimate nature of Pacific Theatre melee fights is that I've yet to hear a story of Americans who fell to the sword.  You hear about the gunning down of Japanese officers in the Banzai charge, or the picking up of katana by American soldiers, or the use of bayonets and entrenching tools by both sides.  But the katana in actual use in WWII?  Never heard of it, except the cutting of machine gun barrels.

So the obvious conclusion is that there were no survivors of katana attacks!  Any time one was used with proper kendo skill, it meant that the samurai (or Ninja) killed any possible Western witnesses!

I love conspiracy theory.  There is no freaking way you can disprove me, because the lack of evidence is my proof.
Logged
Dain
Member

Posts: 125


« Reply #124 on: July 06, 2004, 10:24:27 AM »

...and that mentality demonstrates in spades WHY we have myths and why they are so hard to kill. The only way to disprove these people is to ruin a blade trying to hack through an actual weapon in front of them...although I doubt even that would disprove it for them....they'd probably then claim that either the blade was an inferior one or tempered incorrectly or that the weapon was obviously hardened more than the rest of the original or that you obviously weren't a master and obviously delivered the blow incorrectly and/or at the wrong angle/force/etc,.... or any one of ten thousand other threads they could snatch at just to keep their belief alive.

No offense to Eamon intended. I'm sure he believes his statements to be accurate, and since I have no proof one way or the other on anything he said, he's absolutely correct in saying I can't prove him wrong...but, the whole "yep, blood groove really is to prevent getting stuck" claim (which overwhelmingly has been discounted in sources too numerous to list that I've come in contact with) kindof taints the other claim...in my humble opinion....but since I have no iron clad source to site on that one either, I'm kindof left fishing without bait.
Logged
Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 10459


« Reply #125 on: July 06, 2004, 10:30:00 AM »

Um, Dain, Eamon like others on this thread was being facetious. He was making precisely the point that you followed up with.

Mike
Logged

Member of Indie Netgaming
-Get your indie game fix online.
Dain
Member

Posts: 125


« Reply #126 on: July 06, 2004, 10:36:05 AM »

Sorry...my bad...I didn't get that from his presentation...sounded like he was presenting fact, not sarcasm.

added edit:

Of course, everything I said does accurately describe the true myth propogaters. These people will claim anything to keep a myth alive...even if it means creating another myth.
Logged
Salamander
Member

Posts: 450


« Reply #127 on: July 06, 2004, 10:42:09 AM »

Quote from: Jake Norwood
Oh, oh, the pain...

Incidentally, I got to handle one of those machine gun barrels that katanas are claimed to have hewn asunder this past weekend.

I've seen a lot of impressive cutting on both sides of the big continent...

nobody's cutting through one of those barrels. Nobody.

jake


Well...

nobody who does not own a 500+ton sheer press of some sort. So Jake, where did you play with an M2B barrell? Get to fire the gun? Get to change the barrell?
Logged

"Don't fight your opponent's sword, fight your opponent. For as you fight my sword, I shall fight you. My sword shall be nicked, your body shall be peirced through and I shall have a new sword".
Eamon
Member

Posts: 32


« Reply #128 on: July 06, 2004, 10:47:22 AM »

Quote from: Dain
Sorry...my bad...I didn't get that from his presentation...sounded like he was presenting fact, not sarcasm.

added edit:

Of course, everything I said does accurately describe the true myth propogaters. These people will claim anything to keep a myth alive...even if it means creating another myth.


Wow.  I guess I'll take this as a compliment.  Since I am a ultra-liberal neo-conservative, I will now join the ranks of my heroes, Rush Limbaugh and Michael Moore.  Using my patented conspiracy techniques, I will now produce huge volumes of mass-media ready information and sell it on television as real martial history.  I shall call this television show:

Conquest starring Peter Woodward
Logged
Jake Norwood
Member

Posts: 2261


WWW
« Reply #129 on: July 06, 2004, 01:05:33 PM »

Quote
...Conquest starring Peter Woodward


Oh man... this thread is so against our own rules at this point. Oh well. It's fun.

Quote
So Jake, where did you play with an M2B barrell? Get to fire the gun? Get to change the barrell?


George Turner, an ARMA member, just brought the barrell, not the whole gun, to make a point. Point made!

Quote
The thing about the ultimate nature of Pacific Theatre melee fights is that I've yet to hear a story of Americans who fell to the sword. You hear about the gunning down of Japanese officers in the Banzai charge, or the picking up of katana by American soldiers, or the use of bayonets and entrenching tools by both sides. But the katana in actual use in WWII? Never heard of it, except the cutting of machine gun barrels.


I saw several in the D-Day Museum in Nawlins. (New Orleans). Including one that failed to cut through an LT's helmet right before the American shot him with a '45.

Jake
Logged

"Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing." -R.E. Howard The Tower of the Elephant
___________________
www.theriddleofsteel.NET
Caz
Member

Posts: 272


« Reply #130 on: July 06, 2004, 01:51:02 PM »

Many, many allied soldiers were killed by japanese wielding swords in WWII, all of them POW's :(
Logged
Eamon
Member

Posts: 32


« Reply #131 on: July 06, 2004, 05:27:05 PM »

Quote from: Caz
Many, many allied soldiers were killed by japanese wielding swords in WWII, all of them POW's :(


Ouch.  You win.
Logged
Drifter Bob
Member

Posts: 166


WWW
« Reply #132 on: July 06, 2004, 06:33:21 PM »

Quote from: Andrew Mure

the straight wrought iron sword endured despite a suppossibly 'superior' means of sword construction being available to their smiths.


Nice post generally, but 'wrought iron'?  I don't think too may Iron swords, wrought or forged. were made north of the equator after around 200 AD.  

And FYI, the European steel (yes, they used tempered steel) was often as good or better than the steel produced anywhere in the world.  Nor was laminated blade construction in any way new to the Europeans.  The unusual metalurgical characteristics of the arab swords had to do with some of them being made of wootz ("Damascus") steel imported from India.

DB
Logged

"We can't all be Saints."

John Dillinger
Drifter Bob
Member

Posts: 166


WWW
« Reply #133 on: July 06, 2004, 06:39:23 PM »

Quote from: Paganini


The kind of swords Jake is talking about have a lot more weight - up to three or four pounds more, sometimes - and are much better at chopping through dense material (say, trees, frozen pumpkins) with that kind of momentum than katana's are.


Actually a lot of historical European swords, probably most of them, weigh between 2-3 pounds.  This includes many two handed weapons.  Kataanas weigh about the same.

DB
Logged

"We can't all be Saints."

John Dillinger
Tash
Member

Posts: 284


« Reply #134 on: July 06, 2004, 10:09:45 PM »

I actually had a discussion regarding katanas with my uncle-in-law, who fought in WWII and saw one used in a single combat during the entire war (he was at most of the major actions in the pacific as he was in the signal corpse.  He shot footage of the first marines to hit the beach at both Iwo and Guadacanal).  He never saw one cut through a machine gun barrel, but he did see one cut part of the way into an M1 garand.

The way he told me the story a he and his squad were clearing a cave complex on some tiny island.  Several Japanese soldiers charged the squad, and the officer was wielding a Katana.  Because of the tight surroundings he got close enough to attack with melee weapons (he said it looked like they'd run out of ammo).

The Marine who was attacked with the katana attempted to block with his rifle.  The katana blade actually penetrated enough that it became stuck in the stock.  That's still pretty impressive.

Like most stories from WWII it ends with someone dying, in this case the Japanese soldier and his entire squad...

Quote from: Caz
Many, many allied soldiers were killed by japanese wielding swords in WWII, all of them POW's :(


A goodly number of civillians as well, especially in places like China and Burma where the Japanese viewed the native populace as something a bit lower than animal dung.  I read a book about the trial of one Japanese General for war crimes.  He was accused of forcing Burmese children to stand next to each other so he could see how many he could cut through with his sword in a single blow, witnesses at the trial testified that he would often kill several children at a time doing this.  

I don't know how true this was but the man was eventually exectued for ordering the killing of civillians in his theatre of operations.
Logged

"And even triumph is bitter, when only the battle is counted..."  - Samael "Rebellion"
Pages: 1 ... 7 8 [9] 10
Print
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC
Oxygen design by Bloc
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!