In the European fighting traditions, the term “sword breaker” referred to a strong parrying dagger with special steel teeth along the blade that caught and twisted the enemy’s blade. Disarming the opponent or simply blocking the strike happening more often than actually breaking an attacking blade. In China, Lynn Thompson of Cold Steel Special Projects discovered a sword breaker of a different kind. Like its ancestor, Thompson’s modern version of this ancient weapon actually does break swords.
Thompson refined what was actually a crude and heavy battlefield weapon and created the Cold Steel Sword Breaker from 1050 high carbon steel. The squared blade of the 38-1/4-inch Sword Breaker extends an impressive 30 inches beyond the fluted rosewood grip and nickel silver blade guard and pommel. The four slightly hollow ground flats of the blade are tapered to a sharp stabbing point but focus impact through the blade’s corners whenever swung against an enemy’s weapon. With a blade thickness of over half an inch, this modern Sword Breaker weighs over 51 ounces and requires considerable strength to use. One blow of the Sword Breaker could bend or break a modern combat quality sword.
Construction outshines the traditional version of the Sword Breaker, which was often forged from one piece of solid iron and about as easy to swing as a fireplace poker. Lynn Thompson designed this version with better materials, better balance, and a beautiful rosewood and nickel silver scabbard.
For a more technical approach to a disarming weapon, see the German Main Gauche Trident.
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