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A Talwar (also spelled Talwaar or Tulwar) (Urdu, Pashto: تلوار, Hindi: तलवार, Panjabi: ਤਲਵਾਰ) is a type of curved sword or sabre originating from India and modern-day Pakistan.


The Talwar originated alongside other curved Middle Eastern swords such as the Arab Saif, the Persian Shamshir, the Turkish Kilij and the Afghan Pulwar, all such swords being originally derived from earlier curved swords developed in Turkic Central Asia. It was introduced to India in the 13th century by invading Muslim powers and was adopted by communities who favoured the sword as their main weapon, including the Rajputs, Marathas and Sikhs. The use of Talwar became more widespread under the Islamic Mughal who fought with curved swords from horseback.

The Talwar may have largely replaced the unique Indian khanda as the sword of choice in medieval Indian armies. Sikh warriors sometimes wielded the khanda, a dedicated cutting sword, but only as a last resort.

In The Annals and Antiquities of Rajasthan, Col. James Tod wrote that the Rajput warrior Maharana Pratap rendered a blow with Talwar to one of the Mughal commanders, who came to intercept him, while the Maharana was retreating from the Battle of Haldighati in 1576 following a reversal. The Maharana is said to have struck such a blow to the Mughal commander which clove his skull along with the metal helmet, from the middle of the head to the neck in one single stroke. A wall...
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