Mamori-gatanas, or Japanese short daggers, for ladies in samurai families (2/2)
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A blade of a mamori-gatana for wedding is usually straight with no wave blade patterns, which symbolized her family’s wish that the bride would fit into the new family smoothly.

The purpose to carry a mamori-gatana can be various. A common one is self-defense in case of being attacked, but it can be suicide in case of being involved in an embarrassing incident, and sometimes assassination if getting married to a samurai in a hostile relationship.

On the other hand, a mamori-gatana has been believed to have a power not only as a practical weapon to protect its holder from other human beings but also as an amulet to expel evil spirits and bad luck. From the ancient time, the Japanese have believed that beautiful brilliant items have a special power to keep demons away, and it has been the same with beautifully polished blades of swords. Therefore, parents in upper samurai class would pass a mamori-gatana to their daughter when she gets married, wishing the sword could protect her from bad luck in her new family.

Now, you can appreciate mamorigatanas more interestingly, by not only looking at their decorative perfection but also exploring your imagination on the life of ladies in samurai families.


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