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Sword VS Sabre VS Cutlass VS Scimitar (Comparison)

Sword VS Sabre VS Cutlass VS Scimitar (Comparison)

When someone says Sword they are referring to an object that is sharp and pointy. The material of that object is metal (in modern times) or wood and/or stone (in ancient times) which comes in the category of a weapon.

And, when someone says Sabre, Cutlass, and Scimitar, they are talking about the kinds of Swords because all of these things are more or less the same thing.

This article is going to discuss them all individually and in comparison to each other. So, let’s get started!

What is a Sword, a Sabre, A Cutlass, and a Scimitar?

First and foremost, let’s see what each of these means separately to make an educated comparison among them.

  • A Sword: A sword is a weapon that is being used since the early ages when men knew little about guns and tanks. It is a long blade that is used for ripping. This weapon is also associated with symbol, ranking, authority, and honor among the forces. Spiritually, it also represents protect, power, and strength of a person.
  • A Sabre: A Sabre is a cavalry sword that has a curved blade and a handle that is thick and heavy. This weapon is from early modern history dating back to the Napoleonic period. This weapon originated from the Hungarian sword from the 18th century and Italian weapons from the 19th century that was used for dueling.
  • A Cutlass: A Cutlass is a short yet heavy sword that has a single cutting edge. It was common in the 17th century when sailors in warships used to carry them.
  • A Scimitar: Used by the Turks and Arabs, a Scimitar is a short-bladed sword that has a convex curve and is light-weighted. This weapon was used when the soldiers used to battle by riding a horse. It is also important to mention here that in the middle of the 16th century, the Europeans started using the name Scimitar for the Persian word Shamshir.
soldiers on horses
Swords and Sabres are still used in military

What is the difference between a scimitar and a cutlass?

A Scimitar and a Cutlass, both come under the category of a Sabre as they both are short with a curved shape. So, there is little to no difference between them.

Both of these knives or swords are light-weighted, short, curved with a single cutting edge, and used for ripping the opponent.

The only difference that finds in both of these Sabres is that one is once used on the surface of the water, and one was once used on the battlefield while riding a horse.

To make a visible difference, let’s make a chart to point out everything clearly.

WeightAround 3 lbs.Around 3 lbs.
Length2 to 3 feet.About 2 feet.
BladeConvex curved, single edge, and broadens towards the end.Curved, and single edge.
Used bySoldiers in the war field while riding a horse.Sailors and Pirates.
Differences and Similarities between Scimitar and Cutlass

I think it is quite obvious that a Scimitar and a Cutlass have more similarities among them as compared to differences.

From what I understand, the difference is not between these weapons but the people using them. If you will collect the history, you will know that Englishman from the 19th century used to call this kind of sword Cutlass and it would be right. And Iranians from the 16th century will call it a Scimitar and they will be right too.

So, it is more about the difference in time and people rather than the difference in weapons.

a sword inside a glass casing
Swords date back to ancient times.

What is the difference between a sword and sabre?

A long blade with a handle at the end is a weapon used forever. A Sword is known to be an answer for the abuse of strength used on the weaker people.

A sabre is a kind of sword but smaller in length and has a curved blade. It is a modern form of a Sword or can also be categorized as a knife.

While Swords are more of a symbolic thing now, Sabres are still being used.

WeightAround 2 lbs1.09 lbs
Length1.5 feet to 2.5 feet3.5 feet Approx.
EdgesIt is mostly one or two-edged.Sabres are one-edged.
Used inCombatsA secondary weapon or against a person who has no or a small weapon.
Differences and Similarities between Sword and Sabre

Saying that a Sabre comes under the category of Sword would not be wrong and saying that a Cutlass and Scimitar come under the category of Sabre would not be wrong either. It’s like a latte, cappuccino, and mocha all come under the category of coffee and come under the category of beverage.

Is a sabre a rapier?

Is a Sabre a Rapier? Certainly not!

Sabre is a short yet heavy weapon that is used on the battlefield while the soldiers are riding horses whereas, a Rapier is a long blade that might be not that sharp on the edge but can thrush and thrush nice.

A Sabre is more of a battlefield kind of thing but a Rapier is more of a dueling thing, both serving better when used in the right places.

You may have seen a scene in a movie where two knights have a very thin yet very long sword in their hands which ends with a cap-like structured thing at the bottom before the handle. That long thing sword? That is a Rapier.

And there is also a possibility that you have watched a scene in a movie in which a character suddenly takes out a knife from a hidden place and slashes someone or something, that knife is a Sabre.

What are the types of swords?

There are so many types of swords that naming all and describing them would take forever.

This is no limit to the number and types of swords if we start counting as every country and the history associated with it has its own origin of Swords. Japan still stands out with its Sword manufacturing and spiritual connection with it.

A Sword may not be that common now but there was a time when this was the only weapon used by both: soldiers and the people standing against the countryman.

While we have established that Sabre is a kind of a Sword and Cutlass and Scimitar are kinds of Sabre, it makes all; Sabre, Cutlass, and Scimitar, types of Swords but this just not ends here.

We have so many other Swords like the Gladiator, European LongSword, Katana, and Rapier. Check out this video for detailed information.

Types of Swords


Swords have been used for a long time and they are still present among us in different shapes and sizes.

There are some swords that are long, some are short, others are thin, and some of them are wide and heavy. What matters here is that swords were and still are the symbol of protection and loyalty.

In this article, we have discussed how a Sabre comes under the category of a Sword and how a Cutlass and a Scimitar come under the category of a Sabre. All in all, a Sword, a Sabre, a Cutlass, and a Scimitar are the same things with their own versions.

Other Articles

A web story that differentiates these weapons in a concise manner can be found here.