Forged in Fire

The 'singing' swords of Saladin

The 'singing' swords of Saladin

Two Forged in Fire bladesmiths re-create the legendary Sword of Saladin, one of the sharpest blades in the world, and the Forged in Fire judges test these beautiful blades to their limits. But the bladesmiths did so well that this was the closest decisions that Dave Baker has ever had to make. Both blades are wielded by edged weapons expert, Doug Marcaida, in the kill test. Weapons recreation expert, Dave Baker, in the brutal strength test against armour and shields. Then finally, Doug Marcaida again in the sharpness test where the swords sing their way through some thick rugs. 

The legendary sword of Saladin is known to be one of the sharpest blades in history. This 12th-century sword belonged to Saladin, a powerful Muslim leader and the first sultan of Egypt and Syria. The sword is believed to have been forged from steel far superior to any other weapon at the time. Featuring a thin edge geometry, the lightweight curved blade is designed to effortlessly deliver deep cuts and lethal chops. With the help of this deadly weapon, Saladin founded a Dynasty that ruled much of the Middle East for the 12th and 13th century. The sword is a permanent feature of a statue that memorialises Saladin that stands in front of the ancient city of Damascus in Syria. 

The parameters the Forged in Fire bladesmiths had to follow were: blade length (measured from tip to guard) - 28 to 30 inches. The blade needed to be curved. The weapon needed to have a crossguard and a boot-shaped handle. The bladesmiths only had four days to complete the weapon. One of the bladesmiths even inscribed the name 'Saladin' in Arabic on the blade itself. 

Fun fact about Saladin: he is a playable leader in several instalments of the Civilization computer game series.