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Username Post: Peter's Sword        (Topic#322694)
GYMBOOEE
Journeyman KnifeNut!
*
12-05-03 09:25.08 - Post#322694    



"Simon Peter therefore having a sword drew it, and struck the high priest's servant, and cut off his right ear". (John 18-10)

I'm fascinated by this verse for several reasons. First, Peter showed his loyalty to Christ by trying to protect him from arrest. Secondly, Christian films rarely show the apostles armed with any weapons (except a staff). And thirdly, I've often wondered about the swords that were common in that day. Anyone have some info on descriptions, metallurgy, etc.? I believe short Roman gladiator-style swords were the norm for that period, but I'm assuming that's what Peter used.
 


Gollnick
Master Member KnifeNut!
*
12-05-03 15:58.49 - Post#322791    


    In response to GYMBOOEE

Oh, we know that at least two of the disciples carried swords. The other is often believed to be Andrew. Non-biblical records report that Peter was an accomplished swordsman.

The Bible gives us no details about either sword. In the culture of the day, they would probably have been a short sword 12-15" long; a longer sword was considered a military weapon (much as we today often think of larger guns as military weapons).

The Bible gives no confirmation of this, but it's very likely that all of the disciples and Jesus all carried some small knives for utility purposes. The fact that they are not mentioned can be seen as weak evidence of their existance since their absence would have been unusual and noteworthy.

Notice, by the way, that Jesus never says anything about Peter's (or the other) sword. Apparently, he thinks it's just fine.
Chuck It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing. http://www.balisongcollector.com


 
Ken Cox
Master Member KnifeNut!
*
12-06-03 05:29.18 - Post#322945    


    In response to Gollnick

John uses the Greek word machaira for sword.
From Strong's Lexicon for machaira:

1) a large knife, used for killing animals and cutting up flesh
2) a small sword, as distinguished from a large sword

The word machaira itself comes from the noun mache meaning "a fight or a combat."

The use of the word machaira occurs 29 times in the bible, and except for the few times when Jesus refers to Himself as a sword, and when The Revelation refers to a "great sword", the word machaira indicates a heavy dagger or very short sword as normally carried by civilian travelers and merchants for self-defense.

Such a short sword would have measured between 13.5" (also called a golem or short cubit) and 18" (a cubit).
If straight, it would have most likely had a leaf shape, similar to what some readers might call a Keltic blade; and, if curved, it would have followed the pattern of the various Arabic self-defense blades, and it would most probably not have exceeded 13.5" in length.

If I had to make a guess, I would go for the 18" double-edged, leaf-shaped short sword carried by civilian travellers and merchants of the era.
With this blade a person could parry, thrust and hack, making it a true sword.


Luke 22:36, John 18:6-11


 
GYMBOOEE
Journeyman KnifeNut!
*
12-06-03 07:49.19 - Post#322988    


    In response to Ken Cox

Thanks guys!

I didn't realize how much I missed this forum. I can always count on it for intelligent feedback.
 
Inkster
Magnificent Moderator
*
01-04-04 14:46.08 - Post#332038    


    In response to GYMBOOEE

Chuck and Ken that was pretty impresive. Not that you were aiming to impress but you know what i mean!

Chris


 
Zius2
Master Member KnifeNut!
*
01-05-04 08:50.50 - Post#332257    


    In response to Ken Cox

FWIW, I did a quick picture search for the word machaira and came up with these pictures from Japanese sites:


Source: http://web.kyoto-inet.or.jp/people/tiakio/ancients/arms.html

And I suppose that drawing is the basis for this artistic impression:

Source: http://www.iamas.ac.jp/~nobu99/

I must say that I have never seen this pattern before. It seems possible. As I can't read Japanese, I have no idea of the scientific value of that site.

Personally, I think Ken's opinion that machaira is just a generic term for a short sword makes at least as much sense. That would be consistent with the apparent loose use of terms defining certain blade patterns in Roman times. Also, the Bible wasn't written specifically for knife nuts, and, like today, back then there must have been people that couldn't distinguish a bowie from a dagger (so to speak), so a generic term could be more logical to use.

And I suppose it isn't really important in the context either. But for people like us it is interesting nonetheless.

Edit: a Google text search for "machaira sword" gets pretty interesting results as well. Some people tend to put the machaira in the same category as the falcata (a kukhri-like sword from what is now Spain). http://swordforum.com/swords/deltin/dt-falcata.html


 
Inkster
Magnificent Moderator
*
01-05-04 09:41.32 - Post#332283    


    In response to Zius2

That it a pretty cool looking blade!

Chris


 
Tom Marshman
Master Member KnifeNut!
*
01-05-04 11:31.43 - Post#332319    


    In response to Inkster

Be interesting to find out if Peter is a knife knut...
Tom Marshman



 
Inkster
Magnificent Moderator
*
01-05-04 19:49.26 - Post#332515    


    In response to Tom Marshman

And jesus as well


 
Gollnick
Master Member KnifeNut!
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01-07-04 19:06.57 - Post#333248    


    In response to Inkster

God doesn't tell us much about himself, really. So, what he does tell us must be important. One of the few details he reveals is that God is a swordsman.

While we argue the merits of ATS-34 over 440C, etc., God has a sword made of fire.

And while earthly swordsmen debate about one grip style vs. another, God has a unique style that I haven't seen any human fighter emulate. He holds his sword in his mouth.

Interesting, eh?
Chuck It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing. http://www.balisongcollector.com


 


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