All you need to know about edged weapons

The possession and use of weapons is of course subject to very strict regulations and these are listed in various categories. Among them is the category of so-called edged weapons. This is a designation whose origin is rarely known, and what it covers is only vaguely defined. Here are a few details.



A stab weapon is a so-called edged, piercing or blunt weapon. Its action can only be the consequence of a human gesture or a mechanism implemented by a gesture. This is why it excludes from its scope firearms, whose action, in addition to a human gesture, will also be the consequence of a process of explosion or combustion.

The material of the weapon itself, be it metal or wood, among others, does not influence its categorisation. Weapons that fire projectiles mechanically, without the use of powder, also fall into the category of edged weapons.

Origin of the appellation

Once things have been clarified, it is rare to know how they came to be called a knife. To do so, we have to go back to the 17th century.

At that time, firearms were coated with a product to protect them from rust. This product gave firearms a bronze tint. On the other hand, blades, especially knives and swords, did not receive any special treatment because an anti-rust product could dull the blade. Moreover, etymologically, white originally meant shiny. And, indeed, most of the time, especially when it refers to a bladed weapon, a knife is a shiny weapon. Later, when different categories were created to list the different types of weapons, the term stabbing was adopted for the category we have defined.

French legislation

In France, in addition to the distinction between firearms and edged weapons, all types of weapons are classified according to their level of dangerousness. These four levels (categories A, B, C, D), also define their right to acquire and possess or not, the conditions under which purchase and possession are possible.

Edged weapons fall into category D, for which purchase and possession are free. However, their carrying and transport are subject to conditions. Thus, if it is authorised to purchase a dagger or baton, it is forbidden to carry them in public space, as these weapons are likely to constitute a danger to public safety. In addition, it goes without saying that the acquisition of edged weapons is subject to numerous restrictions concerning minors. In any case, in order to carry and transport a edged weapon, one must have a legitimate reason and be able to justify it in the event of a check. The legitimacy or otherwise is based on the place, context and circumstances in which the carrying or transport was found.

In the event of failure to comply with the rules in force, a prohibited carrying of a white weapon exposes you to a fine of between 750 and 15,000 euros, depending on the nature of the weapon and the circumstances. A fine which may, in the worst case, be accompanied by a one-year prison sentence.

List of the most popular edged weapons

The most common edged weapons are of course knives and daggers. In terms of use, these weapons are used above all for outdoor activities, hiking, fishing, among others, where it may be necessary to have a knife for various impromptu operations.

At the same time, edged weapons are also, to a very large extent, collectors' items. In the category of knives or daggers, we find in particular old weapons with elaborate blades or handles, typical of certain regions or countries. The same applies to swords and sabres. The swords of privateers or Japanese warriors are highly sought-after and obviously very present in popular culture, in the cinema or in series.

Other swords, less widespread or less well-known, may also be sought or used. One thinks of the American fist, the crossbow tile, the club. Not to mention objects that can become edged weapons by destination, objects such as the sickle or snake, originally intended for other purposes.