Sword History: Honjo Masamune & Zulfiqar

Posted by Mel on 9/24/2012 to Military Sword History
The sword has been one of the most used and most recognizable symbols of military prowess throughout the ages. Even after the introduction of firearms, swords were still used by generals and soldiers, and they are still used by military organizations to this day. Because military swords have played a part in so many military campaigns, specific swords often become associated with specific military leaders. These swords have passed from the realm of mere weapons to almost become legends in and of themselves.

Honjo Masamune

Masamune is a legendary Japanese sword maker who lived sometime during the late 13th to early 14th centuries. He is considered by many to be the greatest sword maker who ever lived. He is so legendary that he has been the inspiration for characters from movies, and his name has been used for swords appearing in various video games for years. The most famous of Masamune's blades is Honjo Masamune. This sword was gifted to the Japanese emperor and was passed down through the imperial line until the end of WWII, when it was given to the US military after Japan's defeat. Since then, the sword has gone missing.


This famous scimitar was used in battle, most notably the Battle of the Trench in which it was used by Ali to defend Medina against invaders. Ali was the son-in-law of the Prophet Muhammad, a powerful ruler of the Islamic Caliphate and a well respected military leader. Today, the Zulfiqar is a symbol of the Islamic faith. These are but two examples of famous military swords that have passed into legend over the centuries. There are many more examples of such swords, and they are great examples of this fine and popular weapon.