The swords found throughout medieval times (from approximately 500 to 1500 AD) originated from Celtic swords made of steel. Before that, however, bronze double-edged swords can be dated back to about 1,500 BC. At the beginning of the medival period, swords were about a metre (approximately one yard) in length . They were thin and sharp, with rounded tips to designed to slice an opponent in battle. WIth improvements in arour however, by the end of Medieval times, swords were optimized for thrusting in order to attemtpto pentetrate armour.
The mainstay of the medieval knight was his sword. While a tremendously straightforward weapon, its ingenuity was in its simplicity. It was easy to manufacture, needing only steel and a blacksmith. The steel, iron to which carbon had been added, was heated then forged. This created a strong blade that could be given an extremely sharp edge. Initially, swords were shorter and often used with one hand.
However, improvements such as being made lighter, the addition of a guard on the grip of the sword and the lengthening of the grip added to their effectiveness and length. The addition of the guard on the grip even gave the religious knights the symbol of the cross to carry with them into battle.
While the sword was found in a variety of sizes, in medieval times, perhaps the most popular was the long sword. This weapon could be used with two hands thanks to its lengthened grip. This allowed for incredibly damaging blows to be laid upon an opponent. However, even more deadly than a blow from the sword was the damage that resulted when the blade was thrust, sometimes completely through an opponent. This nearly always meant death.
Swords could also defeat a knight’s armor as the blade could fit between the armor’s joints. Swords could also be found in both the single and double edged varieties. As with many such items of the day, the sword was a symbol of position and class. So the finer weapons were generally owned by the wealthier members of society.