"Dao" is a generic word for any single-edged blade, though it most commonly refers to a wide, slightly curved sword with a single cutting edge. The handle is wood wrapped in cloth to absorb sweat, with a circular or semicircular metal guard. Daos existed since the bronze age, but can be made out of iron or steel as well.
The back side of the blade is designed to allow the second hand to push onto the blade; allowing more pressure and control in both the power and fluidity of the blade's slashes.
- Length: 3 feet
- Weight: 2.5 lbs
The Jian and the Dao are the two most famous swords of ancient China. The dao have existed for centuries of Chinese history, although single-handed versions evolved during the Ming Dynasty. During World War II, shortages of firearms forced some Chinese soldiers to fight with the dao. This wasn't so unusual as Japanese Imperialist troops also used Katanas during the war. It is still practiced in modern wushu, where it is known as the "General of All Weapons". The dao can also be used as a thrusting weapon as well as a hacking weapon.
The longsword variation of the Dao was called the 'Miaodao'.
The Dao and Miaodao was used as late as WWII. Chinese militias and guerrilla fighters would primarily use their swords in ambushes against the Japanese. A propoganda song called 'The Sword March' was used to rally these swordsmen.
When the People's Republic of China was founded, the use of the Dao was discontinued. Many Dao were intentionally destroyed by the anti-traditionalist Maoists. However the Dao is still used by Shaolin Monks today; although primarily for entertainment.
In Show The dao delivered five kill strikes against two pig carcasses in seven seconds. It perforated a pig carcass and it was theorized that it would hit the aorta and/or several vital organs that if the same thrust was to be performed on a person. The dao also cut two pig carcasses in half with two strikes each. The dao's thrusting speed was measured at roughly 4.9 mph.