Language: Mandarin Chinese
Source: Classical literature

Description

Biān () literally means "whip". It is used to describe both conventional whips as iron whips, called tiěbiān (鐵鞭) which in turn could either be a flexible weapon made of iron segments, or a heavy bar-mace.1

RuantiebianA ruǎn tiěbiān (軟鐵鞭) or "soft iron whip".
Anonymous private collection.

ZhitiebianA rigid iron mace, called tiěbiān (鐵鞭) or "iron whip" or zhújié biān (竹節鞭) or "bamboo-sectioned whip".
Sold by Mandarin Mansion in 2018.

Also see:

Tiěbiān (鐵鞭) or "iron whip"
Ruǎn tiěbiān (軟鐵鞭) or "soft iron whip"
Zhújié biān (竹節鞭) or "bamboo-sectioned whip"

Etymology

It may come across as strange that the term "whip" is used for a very stiff mace. It refers to niúbiān 牛鞭, bull pizzles, which were used as whips for flogging but were essentially rigid as well.

Bull pizzleA dried pull penis to which the tiěbiān lends its name.

Notes
1. Shàolín gùn fǎ chǎnzōng  (少林棍法闡宗) or "Explanation of Shaolin Staff Methods" by Cheng Zongyou (程宗猷). Cheng Zongyou spent 10 years studying martial arts in Shaolin temple and learned Japanese sword fighting from Liu Yunfeng.

Do you have anything for sale?

I might be interested in buying it.

Contact me

From approximately the 5th to 3rd century B.C.

€2800,-

Presented by the local Dai nobility to a British customs officer in 1936.

€3200,-

With designs of four dragons in scrollwork around a "wish-granting-jewel"

€5000,-

A fine Chinese straightsword blade, of typical Qing form with a rather wide profile.

€4500,-

A rather well-made example of its type.

€1500,-

Used to move imperial orders from the emperor’s quarters to the recipient.

Price on request
ARTICLE
Edged Weapons of the Green Standard Army
The Green Standard Army was a large standing army of the Qing dynas...
Read the article
ARTICLE
Measurements of a Manchu bow
Made in the famous Changxing workshop in Chengdu, which as the subj...
Read the article
ARTICLE
Jianruiying (2); weapons and equipment
The Jianruiying was an elite division of the Qing dynasty military ...
Read the article
ARTICLE
Of geese and willows
The differences between 雁毛刀 yanmaodao (goose-quill saber) and 柳葉 ...
Read the article