Gorean Weapons - Knives

This is my narrative and relevant references from the Books about Knives and Daggers.
It is not meant to be anything other than the facts of the matter. Arrive at your own conclusions.

I wish you well,


To The Index

Actually in a class by itself, the quiva is almost legendary. It is the balanced saddle knife of the Wagon Peoples. Quivas are normally kept in sets of seven. The quiva is so important that it is said a youth of the Wagon Peoples was taught the bow, the quiva and the lance before their parents would consent to give him a name.[1] It is 9 inches to about a foot in length, double edged, tapers to a daggerlike point[2] and is balanced for throwing.[3] The quiva need not be thrown hard due to its sharpness and weight doing the work.[4] Therefore the quiva is regarded, on the whole, as more of a missile weapon than a hand knife.[5]


Belt Dagger
To The Index

A belt dagger is, well, just that, a dagger worn on the belt.[6] But the dagger, while still on the belt, might be fixed laterally behind the back. In this way it is not as obvious.[7] Such a knife is kept sharp[8] and can also be a ranged weapon, usually held by the tip and thrown overhand.[9]


Butcher Knife
To The Index

The butcher knife is usually ground down into a narrow, concave shape. Since it does not have the sturdiness for combat, it is instead generally used for the swift acquisition of bloody trophies.[10]

Hook Knife
To The Index

Called a small knife,[11] or short weapon,[12] the hook knife is a small, thick, curved blade knife of Ar, used sheathed in the sport of that name.[13] When the razor-sharp [14] blade is sheathed during sport, the edges of the sheath are coated with a bluish pigment to indicate scores.[15] When carried it is buckled in a sheath, a strap passing over the hilt.[16]

Killing Knife
To The Index

While it makes sense to say most any knife could be used to kill there is one that is sometimes called a dagger and sometimes called a knife. It is described as "a sort used in Ar". It is smaller than the quiva and tapered on only one side.[17] This short knife is well-balanced for throwing[18] and, at least one, has an inscribed hilt.[19]

Kur Side Knife
To The Index

The Kur side knife is 14 horts long, or 17 ½ inches, and double-edged. Obviously the handle, being large enough for a Kur, is big enough to hold in two hands.[20]

To The Index

The machete-like[21] panga is used in the tropical rain forests. It is heavy, two feet long and has a curved blade.[22] With its keen blade, one is able to part thick vines.[23] By comparison, the Kur's panga is so heavy that a grown man needs both hands to wield it.[24]

Rence Knife
To The Index

Used by those of the Vosk delta, this small, curved, two-inch knife is used to harvest the rence.[25]

Sleen Knife
To The Index

The sleen knife is worn in a belt sheath and carried primarily by the men[26] and women[27] of the northern forests, although once it is mentioned being used by a Peasant who, perhaps coincidently, also raised sleen.[28] However no direct connection is mentioned as to why this knife is referred to as it is. At one point a sleen knife is described as being short and balanced.[29] It is unclear if this means they vary in length or if all sleen knives are relatively short. The fact that it is balanced may mean it is double edged but this is not clearly defined. Other than this it is spoken of as having a hilt.[30]

Sleeve Dagger
To The Index

The sleeve dagger, which as one would imagine, is worn under the sleeve,[31] the sheath being attached with two straps. The dagger itself can be quite ornate with handles of pearl or tem-wood, with colored ceramic inlays.[32]

To The Index

Named after the American Indian sidekick of the Lone Ranger . . . just wanted to see if you were paying attention no, the tanto is a stabbing dagger[33] intended for close work.[34]

Tarn Knife
To The Index

Tarnsmen carry a knife on their belt[35] which is used, not only for general purposes,[36] but also in case of emergency.[37] All Tarn Keepers, carry a knife.[38]

Turian Dagger
To The Index

The Turian dagger is mentioned only twice, first as hanging from a man's belt[39] and described only one of these times as having an ornamented, twisted blade.[40]

Miscellaneous Knives
To The Index

Most all free men, especially warriors,[41] certainly all men of Torvaldsland[42] and certain women carry some type of knife.[43] One of these is described as having a two-edged blade.[44]

Those who dwell in the far north are fond of carvings. They use a fourteen inch, wooden handled knife with a three inch blade for this purpose.[45] The ulo or woman's knife, of the same region, while not well suited to carving because it has a semicircular blade, is also customarily fixed in a wooden handle. It is better suited to cutting meat and slicing sinew.[46] These same people also use a large, curved, saw-toothed knife made of bone to cut snow.[47]

Way south, on the great plains, a turf knife is used to cut sod. This knife is a wooden-bladed and, saw-edged and is actually more of a paddlelike tool than a knife. In fact it can also be used as a shovel.[48]

One man is said to have a large, triangular-bladed knife carried in a beaded sheath.[49] There is a jagged-edged fisherman's knife,[50] a ship's knife,[51] a tunic knife,[52] a trade knife[53] and one that is referred to as a slave knife.[54]

There is also a scaling knife,[55] a hand knife,[56] a thieves' knife,[57] a kitchen knife,[58] a ritual suicide knife, kept ready in its own case,[59] and one used by the Caste of Scribes, a small knife for scraping out errors on paper.[60]

Knife blades are even mounted into clubs, making them obviously more lethal.[61]

Lastly, a straight-bladed shaving knife is mentioned several times.[62]

Knife Lock
To The Index

A knife lock, when tampered with, releases a blade, or several of them, with great force, sometimes from behind the individual at the lock.[63]

Whip Knife
To The Index

As much a whip as it is a knife, and vise-versa, the whip knife, is all but unique to Port Kar. It is a delicate weapon and can be used with elegance and finesse.[64] But, it can cut from twelve feet away due to the last eighteen inches being set with four sets of twenty thin, narrow knives. If this was not enough, some even have a double-edged blade of about seven or eight inches at the tip.[65]

Footnote References

[1] the seven sheaths for the almost legendary quivas, the balanced saddleknives of the prairie. It was said a youth of the Wagon Peoples was taught the bow, the quiva and the lance before their parents would consent to give him a name.
Nomads of Gor, Page 11

[2] Then the beast stopped, puzzled. Scarcely had it seen the flash of Tuchuk steel, the saddle knife, its blade balanced, nine inches in length, which had slipped from my sleeve, turned, and, hurled, struck him.
Marauders of Gor, Page 274

it is about a foot in length, double edged; it tapers to a daggerlike point.
Nomads of Gor, Page 67

[3] Tuchuk quivas
. . .
are balanced for throwing.
Players of Gor, Page 178

[4] I had not thrown it hard enough, intentionally, to bring the point fully through the body. It is not necessary. The cast, as recommended, had been easy and smooth. The quiva itself, in its sharpness and weight, does the work.
Players of Gor, Page 187

I put the knife in my belt. I would have preferred a Tuchuk quiva, for its weight and balance, but one must make do with what may be at hand.
Rebels of Gor, Page 392

[5] the quiva itself is regarded, on the whole, as more of a missile weapon than a hand knife.
Nomads of Gor, Page 124

[6] The stranger was removing his dagger belt, from which he removed, as well, the dagger and its sheath. He then buckled the belt, so that it constituted a closed loop.
Mariners of Gor, Page 539

I wore my waist belt, with dagger, and the shoulder belt, with the slung sheath, and gladius.
Smugglers of Gor, Page 180

I was aware, very much aware, should it charge I would not have time to unsheathe even the dagger at my belt.
Smugglers of Gor, Page 216

His hand fell then to his side. No longer did it rest, half opened, poised like a crouching sleen at the hilt of his belt knife.
Smugglers of Gor, Page 194

[7] I had a knife, as well, in its sheath, fixed laterally on my waist belt, behind my back. In this way it is not obvious, from the front, that it is there. It is quickly and easily drawn with the right hand.
Smugglers of Gor, Page 73

[8] "Is your dagger sharp?" asked Tyrtaios.
"Yes," I said.
"And its edge?" he asked.
"It can wound the morning mist," I said. "It can draw blood from the fog."
Smugglers of Gor, Page 506

[9] I saw my master half rise, and his hand drawn back, the knife held lightly by its tip. The usual cast with such a knife is overhand, with a powerful snap of the wrist.
Smugglers of Gor, Page 539

[10] The butcher knives are usually ground down into a narrow, concave shape. They do not have the sturdiness for combat. They are used, generally, for the swift acquisition of bloody trophies.
Savages of Gor, Page 145

[11] "did you find any small knives, such as a hook knife?"
Renegades of Gor, Page 246

Ellen drew back in fear, as she saw a hook knife flash in the man's hand.
Prize of Gor, Page 372

[12] This is particularly important if one is concerned with a short weapon, such as a sleeve dagger, a tunic knife a hook knife, such things.
Smugglers of Gor, Pages 141 - 142

[13] a small, thick, curved blade, the hook knife of Ar, used sheathed in the sport of that name
Assassin of Gor, Page 12

[14] held the razor-sharp hook knife
Assassin of Gor, Page 317

[15] Each carried, sheathed, a hook knife. The edges of the sheath were coated with a bluish pigment.
Assassin of Gor, Page 86

[16] To this belt there hung the sheath of a hook knife, which was buckled in the sheath, the strap passing over the hilt.
Assassin of Gor, Page 84

[17] a throwing knife, of a sort used in Ar, much smaller than the southern quiva, and tapered on only one side. It was a knife designed for killing.
Assassin of Gor, Page 42

[18] It was a killing knife, short, well-balanced for throwing"
Assassin of Gor, Page 261

[19] On the hilt of the dagger, curling about it, was the legend "I have sought him. I have found him."
Assassin of Gor, Page 42

[20] I removed from the sheath a Kur side knife. The blade was some fourteen horts in length, and double-edged, but the handle, made for the grip of a Kur, was large for my hand. I seized it with both hands.
Conspirators of Gor, Page 577

[21] the jungle is not a maze of impenetrable growth, which must be hacked through with machete or panga.
Explorers of Gor, Page 313

[22] pangas two-foot-long, heavy, curve-bladed bush knives
Explorers of Gor, Page 287

[23] The keen steel of our pangas smote apart thick vines.
Explorers of Gor, Page 382

[24] I seized up the panga which had been carried by the beast I had slain. It was heavy. I must needs use two hands to wield it.
Explorers of Gor, Page 437

[25] One holds the stem of the plant in the left hand and, with the right, with a rence knife, a small, curved, two-inch knife makes a diagonal upward stroke.
Raiders of Gor, Page 27

[26] The huntsman resheathed his sleen knife.
Hunters of Gor, Page 162

[27] She had now thrust her sleen knife into its belt sheath.
Hunters of Gor, Page 32

[28] He drew out a sleen knife.
Slave Girl of Gor, Page 188

[29] a short sleen knife, balanced.
Hunters of Gor, Page 266

[30] She fingered the hilt of the sleen knife.
Hunters of Gor, Page 133

[31] I saw sleeve daggers
Tribesmen of Gor, Page 50

Hands, too, amongst the higher Pani, are often concealed in the broad sleeves of their robes. This makes possible the concealment, and the ready availability, of a sleeve dagger.
Mariners of Gor, Page 314

This is particularly important if one is concerned with a short weapon, such as a sleeve dagger, a tunic knife a hook knife, such things.
Smugglers of Gor, Pages 141 - 142

His right hand drew from its concealed sheath the sleeve knife which he thrust into the assailant's neck, at the base of the skull, severing the vertebrae.
Rebels of Gor, Page 215

[32] The daimyo's arms were within his wide sleeves. I saw no evidence of his fan. I noted the hang of the sleeve on his left arm. The sleeve sheath was held by two straps. "You are curious," he said. "Yes," I said. "It is possible to be too curious," he said. "For example," I said, "I would be curious to know if your sleeve dagger has a pearled handle." "You are observant," he said. "No," he said. "It is tem-wood, with ceramic inlays, yellow." "Lovely," I said. "It is a better match for my robes," he said. "It is a sleeve knife," I said. "Who would know the difference?" "I would," he said.
Rebels of Gor, Pages 163 - 164

[33] In its hand, upraised, was a tanto, a stabbing dagger.
Rebels of Gor, Page 215

The only weapon I bore was a dagger, a tanto, relieved from the fellow I had dealt with following my exit from the stadium.
Rebels of Gor, Page 283

[34] (speaking of the glaive)
Unlike the companion sword or the shorter tanto, and unlike the typical Gorean gladius, they are not intended for close work.
Rebels of Gor, Page 354

[35] I saw that he had been given another knife, a tarn knife, of the sort carried by riders.
Assassin of Gor, Page 363

He then removed his tarn knife from his belt.
Captive of Gor, Page 252

[36] I felt the knife between the camisk and the binding fiber that belted it on my body. There was a movement of the knife and the binding fiber whipped from my body
Captive of Gor, Page 252

He then, with his tarn knife, from a piece of raw bosk meat, cut four small pieces of meat, which he placed in my mouth.
Captive of Gor, Page 256

[37] "This afternoon," I said, "at the races, I saw a rider cut the safety straps and free himself from a falling bird."
Assassin of Gor, Page 174

[38] "All Tarn Keepers carry a knife," said Mip, playing with the blade.
Assassin of Gor, Page 174

[39] at his belt may hang a Turian dagger.
Hunters of Gor, Page 45

[40] At her waist she wore a jeweled scabbard, protruding from which I saw the ornamented, twisted blade of a Turian dagger; free women in Torvaldsland commonly carry a knife.
Marauders of Gor, Page 156

[41] besides the small swords, carried a knife as well, this attached to a leather belt.
Captive of Gor, Page 49

[42] All men of Torvaldsland, incidentally, even if otherwise unarmed, carry a knife at their master belt.
Marauders of Gor, Page 50

[43] free women in Torvaldsland commonly carry a knife
Marauders of Gor, Page 156

[44] The roast done, Lykos, with a two-edged blade, cut portions which he placed, from the knife, on wooden trenchers borne by myself and Eve.
Conspirators of Gor, Page 410

[45] Imnak's knife had a wooden handle, some fourteen inches long. Its point was some three inches in length. He braced it on his leg in carving, his fingers near the blade end where they might delicately control the movement of the metal.
Beasts of Gor, Page 253

[46] The ulo, or woman's knife, with its semicircular blade, customarily fixed in a wooden handle, is not well suited to carving. It is better at cutting meat and slicing sinew.
Beasts of Gor, Page 262

[47] I did as I was told, and Imnak, with a large, curved, bone, saw-toothed knife, a snow knife, began to cut at a nearby drift of snow.
Beasts of Gor, Page 325

[48] She placed the turf knife in the pit, through the hole which we had left as its entrance. The turf knife is a wooden-bladed, saw-edged, paddlelike tool. It is used to cut and saw sod and, when the handle is held in the right hand and the blade is supported with the left, it may be used, also, rather like a shovel, to move dirt.
Blood Brothers of Gor, Pages 311 - 312

[49] He then drew the large, triangular-bladed knife from the beaded sheath on his belt.
Savages of Gor, Page 114

[50] He had sheathed his jagged-edged knife, a fisherman's knife."
Explorers of Gor, Page 285

[51] He was cutting, with a ship's knife.
Marauders of Gor, Page 261

[52] This is particularly important if one is concerned with a short weapon, such as a sleeve dagger, a tunic knife a hook knife, such things.
Smugglers of Gor, Pages 141 - 142

[53] at the thong on his waist was a beaded sheath, from which protruded the hilt of a trade knife.
Blood Brothers of Gor, Page 8

[54] Then the warrior threw her to her stomach, binding her wrists together behind her back, then binding her ankles. With a slave knife he cut the rence tunic from her and threw her, still partly tangled in the net, over his shoulder.
Raiders of Gor, Page 54

[55] "People of scaling knives", of throwing sticks, and fish spears!" laughed a fellow."
Vagabonds of Gor, Page 128

[56] "Much depends on the location of the strike, and its penetration," he said. "One might kill a larl with a hand knife."
Smugglers of Gor, Page 264

[57] a tiny steel half crescent, ground from the blade of a shaving knife. Part of it, wrapped in physician's tape, was bent and fitted behind her two fingers. The blade, as it projected from between her two fingers, was almost invisible.
Hunters of Gor, Page 98

[58] "Who knows what may serve as a weapon," said a man, "a knife from the kitchen, a pointed stick, a stone."
Prize of Gor, Page 285

[59] "I do not well understand the matter of the ritual knife," I had said to Lord Okimoto, "but it is clear you are one who does. So I ask your view on what seems to me a simple matter. My question is this, is it appropriate to lift the ritual knife when success, survival, even victory, is still possible?"
"In such a case," had said Lord Okimoto, "lifting the ritual knife would be not only premature, but would be an error of action; indeed, it would be improper, and thus forbidden."
"The holding," I said, "is strengthened. Supplies are abundant. The men rise up. They look about themselves. Their eyes are clear, their limbs are strong."
"As things are," he said, "one would not take the blade out of its case. There is no point in doing that now. It was different before."
Rebels of Gor, Pages 81 - 82

[60] A small knife may also be contained in such boxes for scraping out errors, or a flat eraser stone.
Witness of Gor, Page 492

[61] The knife blades and long nails are sometimes mounted in clubs. The blades, of course, may also be fitted into carved handles, of wood and bone.
Savages of Gor, Page 145

[62] a straight-bladed Gorean shaving knife.
Priest-Kings of Gor, Page 34

Three fellows were having their hair cut; one was being shaved, with a shaving knife; another was having his beard trimmed.
Dancer of Gor, Page 281

[63] the knife lock, when tampered with, releases a blade, or several of them, with great force, sometimes from behind the individual at the lock.
Assassin of Gor, Page 52

[64] The whip knife is a delicate weapon, and can be used with elegance, with finesse; it is, as far as I know, unique to Port Kar.
Raiders of Gor, Page 109

[65] coiled at the side of his saddle, in four loops, was a whip knife, of the sort common in Port Kar, a whip, but set into its final eighteen inches, arranged in sets of four, twenty thin, narrow blades; the tips of whip knives differ; some have a double-edged blade of about seven or eight inches at the tip; others have a stunning lead, which fells the victim and permits him, half-conscious, to be cut to pieces at the attacker's leisure; the whip knife of Menicius, however, held at its tip the double-edged blade, capable of cutting a throat at twelve feet.
Assassin of Gor, Pages 363 - 364