Blog, Historical Martial Arts, Sword Lab

Katana to Dao part 3: Men of Letters, Arts of War

The Ming Dynasty (大明 1368 to 1644) is a fascinating time period in history. So much change happening on the global stage, the effects of that change have had huge ramifications for people living in the Ming Dynasty and the events happening in China had wide ranging effects on world at large. For Chinese martial… Continue reading Katana to Dao part 3: Men of Letters, Arts of War

Blog, Media and Reviews, Sword Lab, Weapon reviews

Resurrected: The Song Zhan Ma Dao宋 麻扎斬馬刀-Lk Chen Review

A legendary weapon that many were named after, the true Song Zhan Ma Dao is a mysterious and elusive beast. 6 pounds of steel, approximately 4-5 feet long, used in the wars with the Steppe Empires, and associated with the Great General Yue Fei. The name has been applied to many weapons in the past… Continue reading Resurrected: The Song Zhan Ma Dao宋 麻扎斬馬刀-Lk Chen Review

Blog, Historical Martial Arts, Sword Lab

Whats in a name? The Zhan Ma Dao as a Category 斬馬刀作为一个类别

A few years back, I made response to a historical based YouTube video about the Zhan Ma Dao斬馬刀 as it related to the Japanese weapon the ZanBato (meaning the same thing). The consternation was caused by a description of the weapon’s supposed use in battle. A use, it seems to me to be wholly fantasy.… Continue reading Whats in a name? The Zhan Ma Dao as a Category 斬馬刀作为一个类别

Blog, Historical Martial Arts, Sword Lab

Katana to Dao: Part 2-Qi Jiguang

(please see part one here: Saber and Coin) In 1523, two tribute fleets from two rival Japanese seafaring clans arrived at the port city of Ningbo寧波 in North Eastern China. The coastal city had been designated the port of entry for all Japanese tribute missions and was the one place the Bakufu-幕府 of Japan could… Continue reading Katana to Dao: Part 2-Qi Jiguang

Blog, Qi Jiguang, Sword Lab, Translations, Wu Bei Zhi

Xin You Dao in Wu Bei Zhi:辛酉刀法武備志

Often, when we speak of ancient martial arts and how it was used, we speak of swords and blades and other melee weapons. In China, there is of course a long history of swords and sabers. From the dueling culture of the Han (202 BC–220 AD), through the development of advanced metal working techniques through to… Continue reading Xin You Dao in Wu Bei Zhi:辛酉刀法武備志