A sword is a long-edged weapon used in different forms by various civilizations.
Strengths and Weaknesses
A sword fundamentally consists of a blade, with one or two edges for striking and cutting, a point for thrusting, and a hilt for gripping. Swords are a very commonly used weapon in the world of One Piece. Many people wield swords, but there are those who train hard, and learn to use swords exceptionally well. These people are known as swordsmen.
A sword's blade serves its primary function, most are designed for cutting, blocking other bladed weapons or thrusting, although not all swords rely on being able to cut a wound to be lethal, a few are also designed with small indents in them to help fight other melee weapons. A swords weakness is its quality and its lack of range, as well as the fact that unlike other weapons they relied more on the skills of the one who used them. A sword does not always deal a lethal blow as depending on the sword type and fighting style they sometimes could not have enough force put behind them to do such a thing.
Types of Swords
Within the series, a great variety of swords are used, depending on the user's personal preferences.
Zoro's Wado Ichimonji is a katana. High-ranking Marines, mainly Vice Admirals, use a katana or swords that greatly resemble them. There are other characters who wield katana of gigantic proportions in comparison to their own sizes (also known as "zanbato"), such as Squard or Pica.
The kogatana (小刀 kogatana?, literally meaning "little backsword") is a very small version of a katana. It is more like a hand-sized knife.
The nodachi (野太刀 nodachi?, literally meaning "field sword"), sometimes referred as odachi (大太刀 ōdachi?, literally meaning "great sword") is a large two-handed sword. Its cutting capability and range exceed that of a katana, due to its weight and size.
The dadao (大刀? Chinese for "big knife") is a variation of the dao sword. It features a curved, broad blade designed mainly for chopping, with the end of the blade consisting of two angles connected by a straight or slightly curved edge.
Many low-ranking Marine soldiers and pirates are shown to be wielding one of these. Hatchan wields six cutlasses, each weighing over 300 kg. Wanda, member of the Inuarashi Musketeer Squad of the Mink Tribe, wields a double-edged cutlass that she often uses to channel Electro.
A saber (サーベル sāberu?) is a type of sword with a single edge blade with a large hand guard. Its blade is usually (but not always) curved of variable length. Unlike a cutlass, the saber is longer and thinner in design.
Sabers are often seen being used by background characters. The most notable use of one is by Shanks, who seems to favor them over other sword types. His saber seems to be larger than a normal one. Another notable saber would be Funkfreed, Spandam's sword that can turn into an elephant, with the weapon in question having a few elephant traits like tusks and a tail when turning back into its original saber form. Vista also employs two sabers in combat. Vice Admiral Onigumo uses eight of these in combination with his presumably spider-based Devil Fruit, rather than the Vice Admirals' traditional weapon of choice, the katana.
A shikomizue (仕込み杖 shikomizue?, literally meaning "prepared cane") is a sword normally concealed inside a cane or walking stick.
Roronoa Zoro used one in an anime-only flashback. Brook uses a shikomizue as the main weapon for his sword style. Brook named the blade Soul Solid after the timeskip due to his new ability to imbue his spectral energy into it. Issho wields a shikomizue that doubles as a walking stick for him, and like Brook, he tends to channel his Devil Fruit powers through it — in his case, gravitation forces.
Kaku uses a pair of shirasaya as part of his Yontoryu. Upon his transformation into a giraffe hyrid form, his swords grow in size proportional to himself, becoming more or less as long as nodachi. Admiral Issho's shikomizue also resembles a shirasaya in terms of design.
Arlong's Kiribachi is a zanbato with a saw-patterned teeth for blades, though he has no trouble wielding it due to his fishman strength. Dracule Mihawk's Yoru is quite long in length, being taller than the 198 cm Mihawk. Squard used a very large katana that can qualify as a zanbato. Pica also wields a giant katana, even in proportion to his own naturally giant size. Even amongst giants, they use swords that are larger than themselves, let alone regular humans, as Bastille wields a cleaver-styled zanbato and Little Oars Jr. a gigantic butcher's knife.
Ryuboshi wields two rapiers that have katana-wrappings around the hilts and prominent handguards. Diamante wields a rapier that he can use either as a normal sword or in tandem with his Hira Hira no Mi to fold and reshape into a mace or an urumi. Cavendish wields the Durandal, a small sword and a Meito, which seemingly possesses a shine whenever unsheathed. From the Mink Tribe, Duke Inuarashi and the Inuarashi Musketeer Squad leader Sicilian both wield rapiers, using them to channel Electro.
Mihawk's sword, Yoru, resembles a large longsword in terms of design, but with a single-edged blade instead. Kyros, the legendary gladiator of the Corrida Colosseum, wields a standard longsword. Both Rebecca and Riku Dold III wield variants with dull edges, in order to prevent blood shedding during combat. Dorry, one of the Captains of the Giant Warrior Pirates, uses a gigantic variant called the Terry Sword that suits his size.
While no actual urumi was ever seen in canon, Ohm wielded the Eisen Whip, which was made of Iron Cloud, allowing him to change its shape into a very long and sharp urumi. Spandam wields Funkfreed, a sword with the Zo Zo no Mi powers, which allows him to extend the blade in a very long and bending fashion. Diamante can use his Hira Hira no Mi powers in conjuncture with his rapier to form an urumi.
A non-canon user of the urumi is Heaby, who wields a chain-sectioned sword, allowing him to swing it like a whip due to its mechanism, and fitting his theme of snake.
The machete (マチェテ machete?) is a short, one-handed, cleaver-like weapon that can also be used as a tool like the kukri. It usually has a broad blade similar to a cutlass, but the handle of a machete is far simpler in comparison.
Run "the Machete" is able to wield four machetes at the same time thanks to his lower spider body granted to him by Trafalgar Law's Ope Ope no Mi ability. Pedro, one of the Whale Forest Guardians of the Mink Tribe, wields a machete for combat.
Blondie wields a pair of shotels that have dual blades on each sword. Jack, of the Beasts Pirates, wields a pair of twisted shotels that emulate the shape of a mammoth's tusks, but also look like sickles when viewed from certain angles. The swords themselves are kept inside scabbards that also resemble tusks.
While there are a large variety of swords in terms of shapes and attributes, they are also classified by their qualities. The three known classifications are as:
- Meito (名刀 Meitō?, literally meaning "Famed Blade"): A sword that has gained its own fame, that people would recognize it upon seeing it.
- Kokuto (黒刀 Kokutō?, literally meaning "Black Blade"): A sword that possess a black-colored blade. Yoru and Shusui are both Kokuto.
- Yoto (妖刀 Yōtō?, literally meaning "Cursed Blade"): A sword that carries a curse and brings misfortune to its wielders; can be overpowered if the user's luck is superior. All three of Kitetsu's creations, Kikoku and Shichiseiken are Yoto.
Named Swords of No Known Classification
- Kiribachi: a cross between a saw and a zanbato.
- Terry Sword: a giant-sized longsword.
- Eisen Whip: a katana made of shapeshifting iron cloud.
- Funkfreed: a western-curved sword that can change into a elephant.
- Oto and Kogarashi: a pair of double-edged swords.
- Franken: a giant, single-edged sword.
- Soul Solid: a shikomizue.
- Same-kiri Bocho: a cross between a giant cleaver and a zanbato.
- Shichiseiken: a cursed jian, non-canon.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 One Piece Manga — Vol. 75 Chapter 749 (p. 13-14), Pica draws a gigantic katana against Luffy and Zoro.
- ↑ One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 5 Chapter 42 and Episode 19, Johhny and Yosaku wielding dadao-like blades.
- ↑ One Piece Manga — Vol. 10 Chapter 85 (p. ep=39), Zoro borrows Johnny and Yosaku's swords against Hatchan.
- ↑ One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 42 Chapter 401 (p. 6) and Episode 286, Kaku wielding a pair of shirasaya in conjuncture with his two legs as part of his Yontoryu.
- ↑ One Piece Anime — Episode 286, Kaku is seen in his full-giraffe form.
- ↑ One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 57 Chapter 562 and Episode 471, Squard wields a very large katana to stab Whitebeard.
- ↑ One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 72 Chapter 717 and Episode 647, Bastille wielding his gigantic sword.
- ↑ One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 57 Chapter 554 and Episode 463, Oars wielding a very large butcher's knife.
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 One Piece Manga — Vol. 76 Chapter 763 (p. 15), Diamante using his powers on his rapier to increase his sword's unpredictability.
- ↑ One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 29 Chapter 271 (p. 12) and Episode 178, Ohm using Eisen Whip to change his sword into a very sharp whip.
- ↑ One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 43 Chapter 413 (p. 3) and Episode 298, Spandam using Funkfreed in an elephant-sword hybrid fashion.
- ↑ One Piece Manga — Vol. 81 Chapter 809 (p. 16-17), Pedro wielding a machete against Jack.
- ↑ One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 58 Chapter 563 (p. 5) and Episode 472, Blondie's shotels are seen.
- ↑ One Piece Manga — Vol. 81 Chapter 810 (p. 3), Jack unsheathing his blades against the Guardians.
- ↑ One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 11 Chapter 97 and Episode 49, Tashigi mentions the status Meito, and explains about sword classes to Zoro.
- ↑ One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 48 Chapter 462 and Episode 357, Ryuma reveals the Black Blade classification, and his Shusui being one.
- ↑ SBS One Piece Manga — Vol. 71, Law's nodachi, Kikoku, is named and known as a Cursed Blade.
- ↑ One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 9 Chapter 76 and Episode 49, Zoro overpowers the Kitetsu curse with his luck.
- Sword - A Wikipedia article about swords in general.