Talk:Katar (dagger)

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I changed "misspelled" into "spelled", since misspelled imply that it was accidental, which may not be the case.

-No, misspelled means that something was spelled incorrectly.

anyone up for drawing a pic of this

Yeah, needs pics.

There is no acute accent on the e in the word "anime". Fixed.

Guarding with the kitar[edit]

The long extensions which run parallell to the wrist up to the middle of the forarm could be used to block a sword strike. Source History Channel: the Mugals -- 18:28, 15 August 2006 (UTC)


too much--D-Boy 08:11, 16 January 2007 (UTC)

I agree. The popular culture section is far too big. I'm cutting out the obscure stuff. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 05:57, 14 February 2007 (UTC).

South Indian Katar[edit]

The South Indian katar was far bigger than the ones in the North. Their size was more similar to that of swords......though I'm sure dagger variations existed in the South as well. Zachorious 01:18, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

WikiProject class rating[edit]

This article was automatically assessed because at least one WikiProject had rated the article as start, and the rating on other projects was brought up to start class. BetacommandBot 18:26, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

Hexen 2[edit]

This weapon is also seen in the PC game Hexen 2 from Raven software. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:12, 15 December 2007 (UTC)


Do we have any? Or is this largely made up? I know some parts are true, but some I'm rather sure are false, like having seperating blades which I rather doubt, just like I doubt that most sci-fi, fantasy swords would hold up in a real fight, they just look cool. I further doubt that they could be done while inside someone to cut up the innards. Get sources. Also, I rather doubt that Indians would use a Japanese steel manufacturing system, that is folding the steel, in their weapons, I've never heard of anyone of note using that process except that Japanese, infact go to Folded Steel. Unless the Indians also developed this, they would not even have access until around the late 19th century, when the katar would of faded out. I also question the use and innovation of putting (european) pistols into a blade when it was already done by less honourable dualers to the west, and the effectiveness, a normal pistol or rifle is not garaunteed success, let alone 2 one shot derringers built into a weapon. Weapons with practically no barrels, a poor way in which to aim and which would be constantly in contact with enemy blades and body parts, which isn't healthy for modern guns. Sounds as useful as a paper tiger or golden suit of armour.

  • According to Stone's "A Glossary of the Construction, Decoration, and Use of Arms and Armor in All Countries and in All Times",I believe it was stated that the "folded steel" concept was not exclusive to Japan. It existed in Europe, and is similar to the method Damascus / "watered steel" used for centuries by the Empu of Indonesia in forging the Keris. And why would it not have been available unti the 19th century? Trade routes ran through India back to the days of Marco Polo, at least. Also, several "scissors" Katar are included in Stone's book. And furthermore, so are the "combination" weapons (gun and blade in one weapon)you seem so disdainful of. Examples were included ranging from Axe-guns to rapier-pistols.

I mean no disrespect, I merely wish that people acknowlwdge that sometimes fact really IS stranger than fiction. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:45, 15 July 2008 (UTC)

-folded steel was used by Chinese, Vikings, etc. lots of people other than samurai —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:12, 15 March 2010 (UTC) -the small flintlock pistols on either side would give a warrior an added edge in combat, it's effectivness in combat is, at this date, unknown. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:27, 6 December 2010 (UTC)

Origin, Earliest known example?[edit]

How old is this weapon? i.e., what is the earliest known example? (talk) 05:27, 18 May 2008 (UTC) Jay

Page Move[edit]

Is there a source for the name change to "katara" which led to a page move? If a page is going to be renamed and moved, there should be a source backing up such claims. --Seb0910 (talk) 17:42, 21 November 2009 (UTC)

I second this request. The article speaks of the weapon as a "katar", and I see no mention of "katara", aside from the title. No sources to back it up, and not even the slightest indication, that the name is ever spelt as "katara".--ZarlanTheGreen (talk) 11:44, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
Seeing as there is no sources, or any other basis, for spelling it "katara", and no one is arguing for it, I went ahead and changed the name. Now I'm just dealing with the mess of fixing what links to it, and the such...--ZarlanTheGreen (talk) 19:24, 17 February 2013 (UTC)
The proper transliteration from the original Sanskrit is in fact kaţāra. The "katar" spelling dates back to colonial times. The British, understandably, had not yet formalized a Sanskrit romanization system at the time, and therefore simply spelled words as it sounded to them. Thus we have the words avatar or even "avtar" instead of avatāra, and pundit instead of pandita. Even a well-known word like raja was commonly spelled as "raj" by the colonists. Since the katar spelling is common today, I won't argue for a page move. Just saying that there is a basis for the katara spelling. Morinae (talk) 17:23, 2 June 2013 (UTC)
Do you have any sources to back that up?
If you can point to reliable sources, which can verify what you claim, then that is fine and it should be mentioned in the article. Unless, and until, you do, that is merely an unsubstantiated assertion, which is to way that it is completely and utterly worthless here.
Wikipedia doesn't allow for stuff what you, or anyone else, would like to claim, however sure you are that you are right. You have to actually be able to show that it is correct.--ZarlanTheGreen (talk) 00:26, 3 June 2013 (UTC)
Please don't misunderstand, I am not trying to push any claims of mine. I am merely pointing out a matter of transliteration. Such instances are common, especially in languages where more than one romanization system exists. For example, the Indian name Datta is often written in the English alphabet as "Dutt". If you can read the Sanskrit or Hindi script, you can see it for yourself. Otherwise, you can type कटार in any translator for proof. Even in the English language, I have come across the katara spelling in several books. All I'm saying is, there's nothing wrong with mentioning alternative spellings, and this is considered standard. To call it "completely and utterly useless" is unproductive and not exactly assuming good faith. Morinae (talk) 09:40, 6 June 2013 (UTC)
No I'm sorry, but it is you who does not understand and, indeed, you who fail to assume good faith. You made claims, without anything to back them up. Such claims are useless on wikipedia. They have no place here. This is not failing to assume good faith, as I said nothing to implicate your intentions, in any way.
Yes, the mention of alternative spellings is not wrong. Indeed it would be a flawed article that didn't mention them, but... What I was saying, is that if what you are saying is true, then you should find some reliable sources to back it up. All mentions of "katara", throughout wikipedia, had been either tagged with a "citation needed", or they have been removed as unverified, given that there failed to be any verification of the spelling anywhere, for a very long time. If its true, surely someone would have verified it by now?
I was challenging you to verify your claim ...or if you fail to do that, accept that it has no place in wikipedia, however correct it may be. Whatever you may think/feel about it, that's how this site works. I wasn't trying to talk shit about you, or to be mean. I was merely pointing out how things work around here, and what you need to do.
You have now actually cited some sources for the "katara" spelling (demonstrating that my challenge to you was effective). Thus you have actually backed up what you are saying. Well done. Unverified claims have no place here, but claims made by reliable sources certainly do. Thank you for nicely improving the article and verifying the validity of the katara spelling.--ZarlanTheGreen (talk) 15:04, 6 June 2013 (UTC)
With that verification, may I propose renaming the article? In my experience, I find that "katar" is indeed common in the English language and can therefore be considered correct, but I'm not sure if I'd say it's more common unless we're confining ourselves to games. "Katara" is considered the more accurate spelling among academics as it is a more literal transliteration of Devanagari. Generally speaking, when a foreign word has several accepted spellings in English, the wikipedia article uses the "official" spelling. In this case, that would be the IAST or if necessary the ISO 15919, both of which spell the word as kaţāra, though the accents shouldn't be necessary for the purposes of the article. The exceptions to this rule are words which are already common like tai chi (taiji) or kimchi (gimchi). Although the weapon has become more internationally known during the last decade or two, the word katar or katara is certainly not a common part of the average English-speaker's vocabulary on par with the aforementioned terms. I doubt that a page move would cause too much confusion. Morinae (talk) 10:00, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
Good point.
I was curious to check the policy on these things, and found WP:COMMONNAME (policy) and WP:OFFICIALNAMES (an essay. Not policy or guideline, merely explaining things). These articles point out that while it may seem that the official/correct name, is the one that should be used, this is actually not the case. The name that is preferred, is generally the most commonly used one (as determined by what is most used in reliable sources). The official name may be the appropriate one, but the more common name is generally preferred.
While you seem to have cited sources that verify that kaţāra is the correct spelling, they do not verify that it is the more common one (overall, not just among academics), in reliable sources.
I, personally, think katar is a lot more common, but that doesn't really matter and may be, in part, due to my main exposure to mentions of the weapon, being from games (though the usage in games is just as relevant as the usage in books. More so that academic books/papers, I'd argue, as people are more commonly exposed to games than academic books/papers). Either way, we need some, more or less, objective measure. Checking google books gave the result of katar being more common. Doing google searches gave mixed results ...and both those methods are a bit flawed. I'm not sure how to judge this.--ZarlanTheGreen (talk) 15:45, 7 June 2013 (UTC)
I'm not sure of an accurate way to gauge which is more common either. Over the years, I have occasionally come across "katara" in English-language books, newspapers and magazines from countries where the weapon is more widely known (India, Malaysia, Indonesia, etc). I say "occasionally" here because even in these countries, opportunities to mention the weapon are limited to the context of antique art or martial arts. It begs the question of whether "katar" is perhaps only common in the west, but that's just a guess for now. I do agree with you that games and other popular culture are relevant reflections of language, but the policy states that articles "use the name that is most frequently used to refer to the subject in English-language reliable sources". In sources that are considered more reliable for this topic, I think it's a little more difficult to determine which spelling is more common.
I tried looking at what's being done in similar situations for other articles, particularly Chinese and Korean-related articles since both those languages have undergone a relatively recent transition in their systems of transliteration. Mandarin and pinyin are generally used except in cases where Wade-Giles and dialectal names are substantially more common. This has still lead to some heated debates for articles which can be argued are not well-known enough for an "unofficial" name or spelling to be used. But there have been cases wherein there was no dispute even though an argument could have been made. I think the best comparison here would be the articles for Chinese weapons like jian, dao (sword) and qiang (spear). For all these words, the Wade-Giles spelling is actually more common (ch'ien, t'ao and ch'iang), especially in dictionaries, due to that system being older. Even in more recent writings on martial arts, the Wade-Giles spellings are still in common use despite pinyin being more accurate, officially recognized, and actively promoted. To put it another way, the official spellings were chosen over the more common spellings not simply because they are official but because the words themselves are not well-known enough for the more common spelling to take precedence. Or at least, that was my interpretation of the situation. If we were to apply the same practice to the article at hand, should not "katara" be the title? Morinae (talk) 05:41, 8 June 2013 (UTC)
Actually, regarding my point about video games... The policy is "Wikipedia prefers the name that is most commonly used (as determined by its prevalence in reliable English-language sources) as such names will be the most recognizable and the most natural.". That is, the reason for the use of reliable sources, to determine frequency, is to measure what word is most commonly used, overall. The concern is not what word is more commonly used in books, but what word is most commonly used, overall, in English. Thus, even is word frequency in games doesn't quite comply with the "letter of the law" it does comply with the spirit of it ...which most certainly may overrule the letter of it, at least on wikipedia.
It should be noted, however, that games can be reliable sources, depending on what sort of information one is to verify. In the case of what word is more common, I'd say they most certainly qualify as reliable sources. Indeed, I'd argue that they should maybe count even more than academic sources, for the reasons I stated in my previous comment.
As to what you say about jian, dao and qiang... I have seen jian and dao, plenty of times, but never, not once, have I seen the spellings chi'en, t'ao or ch'iang. Never. As such, I seriously doubt your claim that they are more common. Certainly if we're speaking of how common it is, to the average wikipedia reader (which is the "common" that is desired). Admittedly I am not someone who is deeply involved in Chinese weaponry, but I do have an interest in pre-firearm weapons (especially swords), so it's not like I haven't looked into these things at all.--ZarlanTheGreen (talk) 14:14, 10 June 2013 (UTC)
I guess I see your point; games would indeed be a major source of exposure for the average reader. Well, as I said before, katar is a common spelling so there is a strong justification for using that spelling as the title. And as has been said on the Daoist/Taoist debate, the wikipedia reflects current usage, and adapts to changes in usage over time. So if katar really is more common, that's fine with me. If in another 5-10 years the promotion of ISO 15919 makes katara the more common spelling, the article will be adjusted accordingly. I'll only list my points for your consideration.
1. Katara is a common spelling. Granted, katar is also common, but I'm not quite convinced that it is more common. Of course it may very well be marginally more common, or even a lot more common. Just that I don't see any evidence of that being the case yet.
2. Neither katar nor katara are very common words in the English language. If there was a page move, I do not think it would be too confusing or misleading. Or am I mistaken?
3. For the record, it was not I who first changed the name of the article to Katara. There are others who feel the same way I do, particularly those from countries where the weapon is more well-known.
4. The purpose of the common name policy is to use whatever feels most natural and recognizable. Katara only has one extra letter from katar, not to mention that it is still a common spelling. I doubt it will seem unrecognizable or unnatural even for those who never came across the official spelling. Am I wrong?
I think what we really need here is an objective way to determine which spelling is more common. Even taking games and other pop culture into account, I'm still not sure that katar occurs more frequently on average. Morinae (talk) 10:00, 11 June 2013 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── 1. I would argue that katar is far more common, as I had never seen katara, until I saw that this article had been renamed as such. Granted a google search did show katara as being not all that uncommon. I would argue however, that this is a recent thing and that it is still outnumbered by katar, outside of certain countries, such as India. Certainly in most areas where your average person would stumble upon the weapon (i.e. video games, role-playing games... possibly some, not too advanced, page/book about weapons). It may be that katara will, eventually, become more common, but as it is now, pretty much all games (whatever kind of game they may be) use katar, the Encyclopædia Britannica use katar, the tv show Deadliest Warrior (I could go on at length, as to how bad it is, but it was popular)...

2. I would argue that you are mistaken. First of all: just because it is uncommon, doesn't necessarily mean that it is uncommon to know the term. Among people who know about the weapon, it will generally be a rather uncommon term in their vocabulary. (admittedly, I do believe that most people don't know the weapon ...but that those who do, also don't use the term very often) Secondly, while a lot of people might not ever have heard of the weapon, there are plenty of people who have heard of the weapon as katar. I would assume that anyone who knows it as katara, would also recognize it as katar, but that most people who know it as katar, would not recognize it as katara.

3. ...and I would point out that two or a few more people (the amount of editors I believe to be involved with naming, or arguing for naming, this article as katara), still counts as a small minority ...and that wikipedia's policy for naming articles is not to adjust to what people in India (and maybe a few neighbouring countries) consider to be correct.

4. The amount of letters that are different it completely irrelevant. Something can be spelled with four letters different, but be recognizable as the same thing, or spelled with one letter different and be completely unrecognisable ...and any attempt to search on a term, makes the spelling all the more important (though admittedly having the other spellings as redirects, rather removes that as a concern). As to your other comment here, I'd direct you to what I said about point 2, above.

BTW, on having an objective measure... As I said previously, google books showed katar to be, clearly, more common, but google searches to give mixed results... I tried doing google searches again and looking at the results more closely. Katara gave a lot of results that had nothing to do with the weapon (often having to do with Katara (Avatar: The Last Airbender), but also many other results), while this did not seem as true of searches for katar. I seemed to have found one game that had the katara spelling, but it turned out to be a normal sword or knife. I then tried adding "-avatar" to my search entry (so as to get rid of results having to do with Avatar: The Last Airbender). Using "katar/katara weapon -wikipedia -avatar", "katar/katara dagger -wikipedia -avatar" or "katar/katara sword -wikipedia -avatar", the results where suddenly not mixed. Without "-avatar", I got katar as getting more results with "weapon", but less with "sword" or "dagger". With "-avatar"... katar was massively in the lead. Mind you, searching with just the term "katar" och "katara" (and "-wikipedia" or "-wikipedia -avatar") gives more results for katara, but given that most of those results have nothing to do with the weapon in question, or any weapon at all, that doesn't really seem relevant.

The fact that "katar" is a common spelling for the weapon in question is, as far as I can tell, utterly unquestionable. There is more than enough sources to confirm that "katar" is, most certainly, a common spelling, even if they cannot confirm how common it is, or if it is more common. I cannot say that the same could be said of "katara", however. I do not know of any sources, that would show that it is a common spelling. If you know of any, please do show them.--ZarlanTheGreen (talk) 02:09, 12 June 2013 (UTC)

You make a strong case. My only arguments here (and I realize they are easily countered) would be that I never said wikipedia should adjust to what one or a few countries think is correct. On the contrary, I was attempting to do the opposite by pointing out international English-language usage as opposed to what may be known in North America. Personally, I am apprehensive about using google searches as a way to determine what is more common, since many books and other reliable sources will not be found online due to obscurity. Not to mention the fact that many online sources I have come across sometimes rely on a single or only a few references. Or worse, they use wikipedia as their reference. On the issue of redirects, I actually thought it would quell any confusion since a person who never heard the word "katara" might be searching for "katar" and would simply be redirected to the article, see that the title is katara and then realize the variations in spelling. I don't know of any way to "prove" that katara is a common spelling. I can continuously give source after source which uses the katara spelling, but that hardly proves it is more common. In fact, when I looked through my books to verify the katara spelling, I tried to confine the sources to at least pseudo-academic works. I did not include various others which were simply books on folk tales or poetry that also used "katara". With all that said, seeing as katar was used in the Encyclopædia Britannica, many games and at least one TV show, I suppose it is probable that "katar" is the more recognizable term, at least perhaps among North Americans. I am still not entirely convinced, but in the absence of any better method to gauge which spelling is more frequently-used, I won't debate anymore on the subject for now. Morinae (talk) 09:12, 14 June 2013 (UTC)
I'd like to point out that I'm not american and I'm opposed to americentrism.
Anyway, thanks for a good, friendly, discussion and, again, for adding sources for the "katara" spelling.--ZarlanTheGreen (talk) 22:10, 14 June 2013 (UTC)

Popular culture?[edit]

Is this section really needed? It mainly lists a bunch of video games which use the weapon (the list of which can go on for ever). I'd suggest removing the section entirely (as Katars are pretty frequent in video games and film). —Preceding unsigned comment added by French Connections (talkcontribs) 01:52, 30 November 2009 (UTC)

Agreed. Will remove. GDallimore (Talk) 01:00, 16 January 2010 (UTC)
Removed again. Feezo (send a signal | watch the sky) 09:56, 10 March 2012 (UTC)

Legality in Canada[edit]

Under Canadian law push daggers are banned. Although the intended target of the law are compact folding daggers designed to fit in the palm of the hand, the definition is a knife with a blade perpendicular to the handle. The only exception is the Ulu knife. If anyone knows more about this please post. -- (talk) 21:17, 24 July 2010 (UTC)

Why is this a sub-page?[edit]

Why is an obscure Indian village, given the page title "Katar", while the fairly well known and highly notable weapon, named Katar, forced to be a called "Katar (dagger)". Should it not be the other way around? Surely when people search wikipedia for "katar", it will mostly be due to wanting to know about the weapon? Indeed, I'd say that the vast majority of times, it will be the weapon, that people are concerned with.--ZarlanTheGreen (talk) 20:06, 17 February 2013 (UTC)

I agree, the weapon is much more well-known and notable than the village. The Katara article isn't even very informative. Morinae (talk) 17:06, 2 June 2013 (UTC)
Why do you mention the Katara article?--ZarlanTheGreen (talk) 00:27, 3 June 2013 (UTC)
Oh sorry, I meant the Katar article. Morinae (talk) 09:18, 6 June 2013 (UTC)

Indian Death Scissors?[edit]

The scissors type katar, are these what is known as Indian Death Scissors, or is that a different weapon? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:36, 6 August 2013 (UTC)

Name section[edit]

I'd suggest adding a section to this article, dealing with what the weapon can be/is called. Many other articles can have a "name"/"etymology"/"terminology" section ...or two or all three of them. Such a section would probably be useful here.--ZarlanTheGreen (talk) 21:21, 7 September 2013 (UTC)

punching sword[edit]

Is anyone able to find any reliable sources for the katar being referred to as a "punching sword"? This is presently mentioned at Push_dagger#History:

The push dagger is thought to have originated from the Indian subcontinent, and is related in principle to the 16th-century Indian katar (कटार), or punching sword.

I'm skeptical because one source didn't mention it and another is a book I'm unable to check.

Only news item I could find:

Books have more:

I also found a book which uses this term to refer to Pata (sword):

So for now I think I'll create it as a disambiguation page. Given the parenthesis, maybe punching dagger would be an appropriate term for a katar, rather than sword, even if some people refer to the Katar as a sword?

It's a bit blurry, a Katar seems around the size of a long dagger or a short sword, and the LD/SS barrier isn't always clear. ScratchMarshall (talk) 04:57, 11 July 2017 (UTC)