from the Metropolitan Museum

If you enjoy Asian history and especially if you study it as part of the background to Chinese martial arts, the Metropolitan Museum in New York City, is a place not to be missed. I've been there twice and the second was as if I'd hardly been the first time. There is so much to see and understand. I concentrated on antique weapons, especially those used by ancient Chinese warriors. I focussed on the Chinese ancient armor, with a view to making my reproduction gambesons even more authentic looking. There were some Chinese swords I'd never seen before - zhibeidao, the predecessors of the dao from the Ming and Qing dynasties martial artists are more familiar with.

As far as I know, I'm not infinging copyright to show you my Asian history pictures in the form of a slideshow. The public is allowed to take pictures in the Met, as long as we don't use flash. Some of you may wish to comment on one of the pictures via the article submission form on the Martial History page.

Early Asian Arms and Armour from
the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Asian History tour of the Met - Closer Views

This is a close up of the sleeve from one of the permanent display pieces in the Asian Arms and Armour hall. Two Qing warriors are displayed, in full dingjia parade armour. One rides a horse with matching armour. The small studs were holding concave steel plates in place between two layers of cloth. These are high ranking officers. Ordinary soldiers wore much plainer armor.

A detail of dingjia armour on the sleeve of a Qing warrior.
Alt Text--Qing dingjia armor sleeve - asian history

This is an interesting piece of Asian history. It's a vise used by an armourer in the making of weapons. You can see from the wear on the top of the steel that this one has been well used.

The well worn top of the armourers vise.
Alt Text--top of armourers vise - asian history

Sometimes our best understanding of the weaponry we use for martial arts comes from the art of the period. This jian detail comes from a hand scroll by Zheng Zhong (act. ca. 1612-48). By studying many such examples some consistency of detail begins to emerge and our understanding grows. This is why serious martial artists have to visit lots of museums and do lots of research. If we want to speak with authority on the foundations of our art and know what our weapons should be like, we have to do the background study.

A sword detail from a large mural.
Alt Text--A sword detail from a large mural - asian history

Leave Asian History in the Met and return to Martial History

Return to Chinese Swords Guide Home


Legal age for sword ownership in Australia is 16 but I won't sell to anyone under 18 unless they are training with a good teacher.

Cheap sword for saleHigh quality carbon steel jian

One only at the Autumn Special Price. The high Aussie dollar is your win if you are quick!

Huanuo Royal Peony cutting jian One only at $43AUD off regular low price. Best price in the world for this sword.
Click anywhere in this box

Real Chinese Sword for cuttingHuanuo Carbon Steel Round Grip Battle Dao

One only at the Autumn Sale Price. Be Quick!.

One only at $31 AUD off the regular low price. best price in the world for this sword.
Click anywhere in this box

If you live in the Blue Mountains, give Linda a call
(02) 47826593

Or use the Contact Form to ask questions:
Click anywhere in this box