What is a double-edged katana?

Published: 09/02/2022 Comments: 0

What is a double-edged katana?

A double-edged katana is a katana that is edged on both sides so both sides of the blade are sharp and can cut. They weren't nearly as common as the traditional single-edged katana, though several specimens have still been discovered throughout history.

Generally, the Japanese swords that have the double edge are those that have been produced after the Heian era.

The features of a double-edged katana

The process for making a double-edged katana differed from its single-edged counterpart. For example, Differential heat treatment wasn't used in the same way as it was for single-edged katanas. After the swordsmith finished forging the blade, he would typically pass it down to someone else who sharpened both sides of the katana.

Double edge blades provide additional versatility when it comes to numerous effective cuts; with double-edge swords, every stance and movement can be transformed into a thrust or cut without having to worry about which side faces the enemy.

The double edge katana can readily cut upwards easily and quickly, especially right after a downward slice which can be a great advantage.


Kissaki-Moroha-Zukuri is a katana blade shape with a distinctive curved and double-edged blade. One edge of the blade is shaped in normal katana fashion while the tip is symmetrical and both edges of the blade are sharp. This is one of the available information sources about Kissaki-Moroha-Zukuri styled swords.

What is the preferred katana: double VS single-edged katana?

The most significant advantage of the single-edged katana is its ability to be forged through Differential heat treatments. Japanese swordsmiths heat and cool the edge and spine of the blade at different temperatures, resulting in a hard edge and a soft spine. These properties subsequently made the single-edged katana an advanced weapon at the time, as the blade was less prone to breaking, while the spine retained certain flexibility—a feature not found on the double-edged katana.

Furthermore, all double-edged swords are difficult to maintain, and double-edged katana is no exception. Samurai must maintain both edges, dealing with shards and nicks on both sides of the sword. Instead of just sanding and repairing one edge, they maintain both.

Finally, samurai cannot sheath a double-blade katana like a traditional single-edged katana. For these reasons and others, the single-edged katana was the sword of choice for feudal Japanese samurai. Even today, most martial arts practitioners and sword collectors would agree that the single-edged sword is the most important thing.


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