Nowadays, we see lots of new weapons developed like armed drones, energy guns, destructive missiles and many other dangerous war tools. However, modern weapons make it easy for us to forget about ancient ones created to help warriors and entire armies win massive battles. But today, I won’t tell you about swords, axes, spears and other ancient weapons you know from films, games, and books.
Instead, I offer you knowledge about ancient weapons that only a few people have. Don’t worry, these weapons are known by few not because they are worthless, but because they were made by professional weaponsmiths who were the best of their time. These masterful artisans told their craft secrets only to their best apprentices who could forge them.
Some of these weapons were manufactured to defeat enemies in very specific situations and others were used in almost every battle as an all-suiting option. Because humans developed in many different areas of the world throughout history, these weapons were created in different regions and ages to be the most beneficial for warriors of that time. All these weapons are dangerous and different by their look and function and require learning different fighting techniques to become proficient with their use.
So without wasting more time, see these dangerous ancient weapons below!
Ancient Hindu and Muslims weren’t allowed to have weapons, so they improvised and created something unique; a weapon which would be fatal, but look as if it is a regular work tool for the daily. They decided to make a weapon from Indian antelope horns that would be connected by a crossbar. With horns facing the opposite sides, the madu was perfect for surprise attacks from behind. Yet, both Hindus and Muslims tell that the madu was mostly used for self-protection.
Maan kombu (the fighting style that uses this weapon) is still practiced today. However, the weapon is manufactured using non-traditional animal horns to save Indian antelopes from extinction.
One of the most dangerous weapons created in ancient India is called haladie. It was used by old India’s warrior class known as Rapjut, which by their beliefs resemble samurais, though they lived in India’s territory. Haladie resembles a medium-sized sword, but is double-bladed which makes it more difficult to use.
However, those who master haladie techniques can hit from different sides which make it easy to eliminate an enemy’s protections. Also, by having two blades, haladie gives more freedom to block incoming attacks.
These are spiked rings from the ancient Japan. While kakute is small and seems to cause a tiny amount of harm, it was one of the most dangerous weapons used by female ninjas – kunoichi. These rings have anywhere from one to three spikes which when used at the right time could inflict fatal wounds to enemies if weak spots like a neck, heart, and spine are struck.
Moreover, kakute is even more dangerous when used with poisons, which give better chances to defeat enemies even if the weak spots are missed.
Sodegarami was used by Edo-era police officers in Japan. It looks like a spiked pole which officers used with quick twist attacks to bring down criminals without killing them or causing unnecessary damage.
The tactic police officers used was simple. At least two policemen attacked one criminal, one policeman from the front and another from behind to easier pin criminals on the ground. At Edo-era, this weapon was helpful to stop samurais killing each other because laws allowed killing samurais only for another samurai. These laws created such conditions that officers had no other option to stop them without doing harm.
One of the oldest weapons, atlatl is the ancestor of bows and arrows. While atlatl could be used only at close distances, it could project darts at 100 mph speed! It was such an effective killing weapon that some scientists believe that it was responsible for massively decreasing the woolly mammoth population.
The reason why atlatl is such a fast weapon is due to it being created from flexible wood. Archeologists say that this weapon was so effective that it was used on all continents except Africa, while Europeans saw Aztecs using them as late as the 1500s.
Created in ancient Egypt, khopesh is like a mix between a battle ax and a sword, which gives it more functionality. Before khopesh started to be used as a weapon, it was a symbol of a pharaoh’s ruling power, but because of its effectiveness in battlefields, warriors started to use khopesh as a weapon and even a tool to cut trees.
It is made from bronze so it weighs a lot and is hard to use, but because of the same reason it does enormous damage to enemies, and due to its form, it was useful to protect from oncoming blows.
While cestus isn’t the most dangerous weapon, it was great to protect arms while boxing and was used like a shield in close battles.
The primary difference between cestus and today’s boxing glove is the materials they are made of. Greeks used leather strips and in real fights filled cestus with iron plates, spikes and blades, remastering ancient sports gloves into deadly weapons.
This sword-resembling weapon was born in ancient Ethiopia and was difficult to use because of its shape. While at first shotel was popular in use, Ethiopians and later Europeans understood that shotel doesn’t only take a long time to master, but that also in most situations is ineffective in close ranges battles because it is too long.
The only good point about this weapon is that its shape made it hard for enemies to block with shields and other close range weapons.
2. Push Dagger
This short-bladed dagger resembles a letter “T” by its form and was created for close range battles and surprise attacks. Push daggers are taken in hand with the blade facing away from your fist between the index and middle finger.
The push dagger looks similar to but is shorter than its relative katar, also known as the punching sword, which is longer, heavier and more suitable for long battles rather than surprise attacks. The good thing about push daggers is that they are still used around the world as a simple but effective self-protection weapon for civilians and soldiers.
1. Bagh Naka
Also known as tiger claws, bagh naka is a weapon which came from ancient India and Japan. Bagh naka most often have four to five curved blades created to slash enemies muscles, because they’re too short to hit most internal organs.
It was popular among assassins who used it together with poisons to defeat stronger and better-armed fighters. Also, women were encouraged to carry this weapon to protect themselves against strangers or smaller wild beasts while away from home.