Central African heavy slashing sword

length: 20 1/2"
blade: 13"
blade width: 7"!
grip and pommel: 6"
pommel disc: 4 3/4"
weight: 2 lbs

This is one of the most massive and unusual African swords I've ever come across. It comes from the Teke people of the western Congo, near the junction of the Congo and Kisai rivers (currently Zaire - exact identification courtesy of J. McDougall, one of the world's foremost experts on ethnographic weaponry). The blade is sharpened from the bolster all the way around the curve to the tip. The unsharpened back-spine is t-sectioned and extremely robust - 7/16" thick at the spine. Disc pommel is quite large and solid. We've done some experimenting with this sword to see what sort of fighting style would derive out of this particular configuration - the large pommel would impede any type of snaping motion on impact, so the best use would be for a straight-wristed in-close cut. The grip is shaped so that the cutting edge is forward when gripped, and we figure that one of the most effective techniques would be a backhand offside strike that would simultaneously move an enemy's shield out of the way and deliver a disembowelling slash. A very interesting and unusual piece.