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Stage Combat Katzbalger - OSW09

Stage Combat Katzbalger

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Overall Length: 31 1/2'' Blade: 25 1/2''

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Weight: 3 lb 8.5 oz
Edge:  Blunt
P.O.B.: 2 3/4''
Thickness: 4.4 mm - 3.8 mm
Width: 48.1 mm
Grip Length: 3''
Pommel: Peened

A short, yet brutish sword, the Katzbalger, is a reflection of the lives of the ‘’Landesknecht’’ mercenary soldiers who carried them; ‘’short and brutish’’. These German mercenaries adopted their fighting style from the Swiss successes with tight, massed pike formations who dismounted the noble knight from his seated dominance of the field, giving tactical ascendency to well-drilled formations of foot soldiers. Famous for their colorfully outlandish dress, slashed clothing and an array of feathers - the Landesknecht made their presence loudly known. Their garish style was granted exemptions from German sumptuary laws as a concession to their rough, dangerous and often brief lives.

While the pike and later, the arquebus, were the main weapons utilized by the Landesknecht, nearly all of them universally carried a secondary arming sword, most notably the Katzbalger. Strangely named, the origin of Kazbalger is in dispute, but it may be a combination of German ‘’Katze’’ (cat) and ‘’Balgen’’ (to brawl) - therefore Katzbalger may be to ‘’fight like a cat’’.

This makes sense considering that the Katzbalger would be unsheathed in the thick of melee, probably between two pushing pike formations. Designed for horrific chops at close quarters, the Katzbalger’s length, quickness and heft makes it an ideal sword for fighting when there is no room to manuever in a close, shoulder-to-shoulder wild melee.

Not simply an excellent close-in offensive weapon, the Katzbalger has excellent defence for its wielder on account of its wide blade for parrying and its characteristic, large S-shaped quillons to guard the hand and entrap the weapon of the foe.

This Katzbalger is from the Czech Republic and has a thick, durable, blunted blade of high carbon steel intended for stage combat. The steel crossguard is welded on for strength, and the blade is peened to the steel pommel for a strength. The grip is tightly wrapped with steel wire.

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