1775-1783 period correct fighting knife?

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Red Owl

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Well the daggers are illegal so I see that aspect but if you look at some of the artwork, etc.- they show up from time to time. I think as a design the Knights in Medieval Europe had them, ancient design.
 

LRB

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I believe many people had need of a knife at the time. But a specific knife just for fighting probably would have been pretty rarified.
There were some used in the period for sure, but I'm doubtful they were very common in the American colonies, at least from what I've read.
The only common designated fighting knife would have been a double edged dagger and would normally have a cross guard which would be rare to near nonexistent on a single edged knife in early America. Most knife makers of early American style knives make so called rifleman's knives with single edges and cross guards. Myself included in the past. However these are not PC. These are what people ask for and what they want and as non PC as they can be, BUT, they just look kool! A fighting knife of the time would be whatever one carried and used daily. Most often a simple scalper/butcher.
 

LRB

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Well the daggers are illegal so I see that aspect but if you look at some of the artwork, etc.- they show up from time to time. I think as a design the Knights in Medieval Europe had them, ancient design.
The only illegal knife in Florida is a ballistic knife. The kind that ejects the blade like a missile.
 
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No knife is illegal in NH, Fed mayby buy 1 edge, 2 edge, autos all are legal.

It is illegal to use one to assault someone with one same as killing someone with a knife. Self defense ok but have a very good lawyer, if you could has used a firearm a knife is also ok but same as shooting someone plan on ajury trial.
 
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In the southern colonies especially Georgia most men had one eye as eye gouging was a big part of fighting each other. Most men grew there thumbnails long to use as a weapon. This type of fighting was outlawed but in the very rural areas it persisted up till the end of the revolution.
 
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In the southern colonies especially Georgia most men had one eye as eye gouging was a big part of fighting each other. Most men grew there thumbnails long to use as a weapon. This type of fighting was outlawed but in the very rural areas it persisted up till the end of the revolution.
More than 50% of men were missing an eye? I think not.
 
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More than 50% of men were missing an eye? I think not.
Let me get home later today and I’ll post some of research materials I have stashed all around my man cave. I’m 65 so I’ve got stuff I’ve done probably forgot I’ve put up.
I have grew up here in the Oconee River valley so I have lots of information. May start a different thread concerning the settling of Georgia specifically my area which I’m most familiar with.
 
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The object of hand to hand combat, with or without a knife, is to kill him before he hurts you.
How that might shake out in court is secondary to being alive for the trial.
While that's true, I have to agree with muska that in most, if not all knife fights; both opponents get cut.

Gus
 

DixieTexian

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Probably much simpler than that. Daggers are typically defined as double edged knives, so they aren't generally regarded practical cutting tools for stuff like cleaning a deer. I'd assume that much like switchblades they became associated with crime in the popular mindset, so the obvious solution was to ban them regardless of any evidence of whether or not they were actually used by criminals.
 
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Trade knives were the most common style of fighting knives. French and English Trade Knives.

The early longhunter or riflemen’s knife is a long bladed knife 11-13”, some are broken off swords turned into fighting knives. Typically they had a hidden tang with a guard or no guard.

Dirks were a popular style of blade too.

The things you would not see on early long knives was a type of double edge or clip point.

Some Dirks did have a long edge and then a short double tip edge.

You’d want to avoid the Bowie style blade.

Early long knives, riflemens knives were very crude, many even look like large Chef’s knives.
 
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