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The name “Jangdo” for this knife appeared during the early Choson (1392 -1905) period. During the Choson dynasty the “sadeabu” or gentry class always carried the Unjangdo. The "un" before the "jangdo" designates that the knife parts other than the blade were made of silver. Only the gentry, however, had the silver Jangdo called Unjangdo. The wealthy class were afraid of being poisoned and would use the silver on the knife to dip in their soup to see if there was poison there. This particular knife has no silver on it. it was made for and used by a wealthy commoner. It is large enough to have been a weapon.
It was made during latter part of the Chosun Dynasty (1392 to 1896), most probably around 1850. The handle and scabbard are made of persimmon wood.
What makes this Jangdo so rare is a locking mechanism built into the scabbard. When it is locked you cannot remove or insert the blade into the scabbard.
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The Jangdo pictured here is unlocked.
You just slide the little button to lock or unlock the knife.
The ingenious locking device resembles a button on the end of a curved blade spring. Here you see it partially withdrawn from its place in the scabbard. When it is compleely inserted you see only the button, as shown above, locking the blade in place.
This shows the complete set disassembled. The thin metal strip in the center inserts through the hole in the collar, locking the collar in place and locking the blade in place when it is inserted all the way.
You will receive this Certificate of Origin along with your knife.
This knife is about 100 years old. It is not bright and shiny. We did not sharpen and polish this knife. It is a piece of history. If you desire a sharp shiny knife we suggest you buy a new one.