The exact origin of the word is not known. Arguably, the word ‘dagger’ comes from the Old French dague or from the Old Italian daga, perhaps from the Vulgar Latin daca “Dacian knife”. The word dagger is known from the 14th century, when daggers began to be consistently distinguished from swords.
The length of a dagger may vary, depending on its use and the tradition it belongs to. A dagger’s length ranges anywhere between 5 to 20 inches long. Short daggers, such as stilettos can be only 5 inches in length, while the Viking seax (which can be qualified as a short sword) can make over 25 inches in length.
Quality daggers are normally made out of high-tensile steel, such as tool steel. High carbon steel, such as pattern-welded (Damascus) steel, is often used, as this type of steel imparts excellent sturdiness and edge retention required in daggers. A variety of valuable materials, such as bone, ivory, rare wood, precious metals and gemstones, are used in dagger handles.
Some daggers are made curved to execute a better cutting motion. Curved blades are usually better for slashing then they are for stabbing, because they have a longer surface area of blade that generally follows the motion of the cut and is therefore in contact with the target longer.
Noblie is small family owned workshop. Making a collectible dagger takes several months. The dagger can be engraved by hand.
You can buy handmade daggers at the Noblie Knife Store. All Noblie knives and collectible daggers feature superb materials and craftsmanship. Making a custom dagger at Noblie takes several months.
There are many skilled craftsmen and companies that make good daggers, as the art of dagger making has a long and rich history. However, the quality of a dagger can depend on a variety of factors such as the materials used, the design and craftsmanship, and the intended use of the dagger.
Some of the most respected and renowned dagger makers are found in regions that have a strong history of blade-making traditions. For example, Japan is known for its traditional samurai swords and knives, while regions of Europe like Germany and Spain have a history of making high-quality daggers and knives.
Some of the most reputable dagger makers today include companies like Boker, Cold Steel, Gerber, and Benchmade and Of course Noblie.
Ultimately, the best dagger for you will depend on your personal preferences and needs. It's important to do your research and carefully consider the quality, design, and intended use of the dagger before making a purchase.
There are many types of daggers that feature different designs and uses. The poignard, the Scottish dirk, the seax and the stiletto are some examples of historic European daggers. The trench knife is an example of the 20th-century inventive dagger-making. Bagh nakh, jambiya and keris are some exotic daggers from Asia featuring a blade that is curved, wavy or claw-like.
Stiletto is a dagger with a long slim blade, primarily used as a stabbing weapon. Developed in the 15th-century Italy, the stiletto was an evolution of the misericordia (the knife used to deliver the death stroke to a dying knight). Its slender blade was tapering gradually to a needle-pointed tip, thus reducing friction upon entry, which made the stiletto a perfect dagger for thrusting and stabbing.
The knightly dagger was a tapered dagger with a recessed face and a down-turned guard with beaded terminals, popular throughout the Middle Ages. The sturdy tapering blade was good for stabbing, while the down-turned guard allowed to parry and block enemy’s strokes, which was crucial in close combat. These fighting daggers were primarily used by knights and warriors, hence their name.
A quillon is an individual bar on the either side of the crossguard. A quillon dagger has a guard with two forward-pointed faceted quillons. A slightly downturned guard is typical of these medieval daggers. They emerged around the 12th century and were common for knights and warriors over a long period of time, even up to the 18th century. The shape of this dagger’s guard was similar to the crossguards (double quillons) of knightly swords of the time and was designed to parry enemy swords in close combat. The quillon dagger was often carried as a companion sidearm to a sword and was popular with soldiers in various countries, from Norman knights to Cromwell’s Roundheads.
The kard is the Persian dagger with a straight, single-edged blade and a guardless hilt. Historically, they were worn as everyday utility knives. These daggers feature blades with a flat tang of the same width as the blade, which is covered with scales traditionally made of ivory or horn. With its point reinforced to penetrate chain mail, this dagger was mostly used as a stabbing weapon.
A dirk is a long-bladed thrusting dagger. Historically, it was the personal sidearm of Highlanders and of Scottish officers during the Age of Sail. The naval dirk was originally used as a boarding weapon. With its straight blade with a pointed tip, it was primarily devised to be a thrusting or stabbing weapon. Historically a symbolic traditional and ceremonial weapon of the Highland warriors, the dirk made its way into the naval ceremonies in the 19th century, and is worn today as a badge of office by naval officers in various countries around the globe.
A push dagger, or push dirk, is a close-combat short-bladed thrusting dagger. It has a “T” handle that is held in closed-fist hand to deal thrusting or stabbing strikes. The push dagger originated in the 19th-century Southern USA and was popular with civilian owners because it was an easily concealable weapon. Push daggers are still sold as “tactical” or self-defense weapons, particularly in the USA.
The seax, or sax, is known as the Viking dagger. It is a large fighting knife or, rather, a short sword carried by warriors of the Viking era. This dagger was one-handed and single-edged, with a narrow through-tang, and usually without a bolster or pommel. The seax’s blade was longer and heavier than that of a normal dagger, but was compact enough to be wielded with one hand, which made it a convenient hunting and fighting weapon. Once widespread in Northern Europe, the seax was carried by the Vikings, Saxons, Angles and other Germanic tribes.
A jambiya is an Arabic dagger that has a short curved blade with a medial ridge. It originated in Yemen and have spread over the Middle East and South Asia. Its curved blade is devised for mighty slashing strikes, while the central ridge running across the blade on both sides gives the jambiya an excellent degree of sturdiness. For centuries, jambiya knives have been a symbol of social status in Yemen and other Arabic countries. It is deemed that the jambiya should only come out of the sheath in extreme cases of conflict. This dagger is also used in traditional events, such as dances.
The katar, a type of push dagger from India, is the most famous and characteristic of Indian daggers. It has an H-shaped horizontal hand grip with the blade positioned above the user’s knuckles. The katar normally has a short, triangular blade that is wide at the hilt and tapers in straight lines to the point. The handle is made up of two parallel bars connected by two or more cross-pieces. The katar is a forceful thrusting weapon that was sometimes used against chain mail and known as “armour-piercing”.
A khanjar is a traditional short curved dagger that originated in Oman and has since spread to the rest of the Middle East, South Asia, and the Balkans. Khanjar’s blade takes the shape of the letter “J”. Once a defense weapon, nowadays the khanjar is used solely for ceremonial and practical purposes. The khanjar, a symbol of national pride in Oman, appears on the country’s flag and currency. Khanjars form part of Omani male traditional attire and are a sign of status: the noble and wealthy men wear a khanjar made of gold or silver.
Originally a single-edged weapon, by mid-18th century the dirk more commonly had a double-edged blade, thus becoming similar to the dagger. Nowadays, the dirk is associated with the ceremonies and status weapons of the Navy, while the dagger formally has a ceremonial status in some Army units. Legally, there is no difference between a “dirk” and a “dagger”: they are used synonymously and are treated the same under the law.
The tanto is the traditional Samurai dagger: it is a single or double-edged dagger with a length between 15 and 30 cm. The tanto can be used for stabbing or for slashing. This dagger was preferred by the Samurai for close-range combat where powerful piercing or stabbing strikes were required. Samurai appreciated the tanto’s strong blade for the ability to pierce through armor. Nowadays, American and European interest in Japanese martial arts has created a demand for the tanto dagger as an important component of traditional martial culture of the East.
The qama, the Caucasian long dagger or short sword, is the traditional weapon of the peoples of the Caucasus and Transcaucasia. The name arguably comes from the Persian “ghameh” (a short two-edged sword) or from the Turkish “kama” (dagger). The qama has a wide, straight, double-edged blade and is carried by men from a young age. This type of dagger usually has no crossguard. The qama is the traditional attribute of the Caucasus warriors and of Cossacks as well, symbolizing heroism and dignity. The qama is the national weapon of Georgia.
Daggers with an Obsidian blade are considered the sharpest in the world. Obsidian fractures with extremely sharp edges and, due to this, was used to manufacture cutting and piercing tools. However, Obsidian is not fit for making kitchen knives as such knives are extremely coarse and brittle.
In terms of California law, a “dagger” means a knife that can be used as a stabbing weapon. In California, daggers, dirks and other sheath knives must be carried openly and cannot be concealed.
In New York, if you carry a knife on your person for any reason, you must ensure the blade is shorter than four inches.
The dagger became a notable part of European history during the Middle Ages when it was known as the “knightly dagger” and was used for additional defense in close combat. There has also been historical evidence of the sacred and ceremonial meaning of the dagger: it was involved in various rites and initiation ceremonies. Such ceremonial objects were adorned with ornate hilts and other parts made of gold and precious stones.
Nowadays, an elegant dagger is also a unique work of art that is presented as a rare gift to an outstanding person or kept as part of a glamorous art collection. Unique daggers are sought after by the military, collectors and lovers of old-fashioned souvenirs alike, to be demonstrated as part of a showy collection or as an element of a vintage interior.
Knighly daggers come in many styles reminiscent of various historical events, epochs and fashions. These handicrafts are engraved or adorned with splendid garniture and tracery covering both the blade and the handle. The detailed chase on the scabbard is gracefully complemented with gemstones.
Our elegant fancy daggers have various shapes: some of them are slightly rounded, others have straight lines. You may even find elegant stylets with wooden elements. The large selection of models offered by Noblie is designed to suit even a most fastidious taste.
Aesthetic daggers are created by seasoned professionals truly devoted to the ancient and noble art of crafting the custom dagger. Traditional methods of metalwork and only quality materials are used. Each pretty dagger is made in a single copy, which means that nobody can doubt its uniqueness and exclusivity.
For amateurs of delightful gifts, we offer:
Handmade daggers are often considered as works of art that reflect the skill and creativity of the craftsmen who make them. Custom daggers can also serve as symbols of strength and nobility that can impress friends, partners and collectors. A engraved dagger will emphasize the features and hobbies of its owner and become a great centerpiece of interior.