Knives, since sharpened
tools emerged almost 1 million years
ago, edged weapons have played an
incredible role in the shaping of
human history. You can trace
the history of daggers, knives and
bayonets all the way through to the
21st century. Learn about how
the discovery and mastery of
metalworking allowed the first
knife-makers to diversify the styles
and uses of the early edged weapons.
Explore the dagger’s role as an
essential companion in battle and in
civilian life during the medieval
period, and then realize the demise
of these weapons during the 17th and
There are a great
variety of knives throughout the
world and throughout history,
including edged weapons in Asia and
Africa, from the jambiya of the
Middle East to the Indonesian kris.
Also consider the decorated daggers
of Persia as well as the exquisite
knives of Japan, which represent the
bladesmith’s finest achievement.
From ancient Egyptian flint knives
to the rondel and ballock daggers of
medieval Europe, and from
17th-century plug bayonets to the
classic commando knives of World War
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