D&D 5E 5e Bastard Sword


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Mercule

Adventurer
Fact is, these categories have been largely artificial since day one, anyway. "Longsword" is a remarkably broad descriptor. (Insert, "No, that's a broadsword!" joke here.)
I just realized that no one complains about the disappearance of the broad sword. That's probably just as well, though, since (IIRC) the broad sword was only broad compared to the rapier.
 

Syntallah

First Post
I will be introducing a bastard sword for the Paladin of Torm in my group soon:

Bastard Sword 30gp 1d8 slashing 5 lb. Special Rules Versatile [may be used one handed with a Str 19+ for the 1d10 damage]
 
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treebear

Villager
Historically the bastard sword was a slightly heavier longsword with an extended hilt to allow it to be gripped with two hands or still wielded one handed with a shield. It was a compromise weapon between a heavier two handed weapon and a longsword for the Knight too poor to afford both weapons, such as a "bastard" son, hence the name bastard sword. Not as good as either one but capable of doing both jobs until you could afford proper weapons.
 

Jeff Carlsen

Adventurer
Historically the bastard sword was a slightly heavier longsword with an extended hilt to allow it to be gripped with two hands or still wielded one handed with a shield. It was a compromise weapon between a heavier two handed weapon and a longsword for the Knight too poor to afford both weapons, such as a "bastard" son, hence the name bastard sword. Not as good as either one but capable of doing both jobs until you could afford proper weapons.


It's worth noting that at the time, the term for longsword was arming sword, and what we call a great sword would probably be called a long sword.
 

JWO

First Post
Historically the bastard sword was a slightly heavier longsword with an extended hilt to allow it to be gripped with two hands or still wielded one handed with a shield. It was a compromise weapon between a heavier two handed weapon and a longsword for the Knight too poor to afford both weapons, such as a "bastard" son, hence the name bastard sword. Not as good as either one but capable of doing both jobs until you could afford proper weapons.

Aren't they called 'bastard swords' because they're the bastard children of one-handed and two-handed swords?
 

steeldragons

Steeliest of the dragons
Epic
Aren't they called 'bastard swords' because they're the bastard children of one-handed and two-handed swords?

That's what I always though too. Was that in a players manual or DMG way back when?

Treebear's explanation is pretty cool [and works too] though.
 

Kalshane

First Post
If you look at the images in any historical fighting manuscripts (such us the ones by Tallhoffer or Fiore Dei Liberi), the longswords depicted therein are identical to what D&D has traditionally called a bastard sword. A longsword is called such because it's longer than a standard single-handed sword, not in comparison to a shortsword. 5E making the longsword into a versatile weapon functionally identical to the bastard sword is actually bringing it closer to its historical counterpart.
 



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