Language: Mandarin Chinese
Source: Classical literature


Jiànruìyíng Chángqiāng (健銳營長槍), literally "Jianruiying Long Spear", was a type of spear that was used by the Jianruiying. They were a highly trained light division of the Qing dynasty that was comparable to today's special forces.

The spear was designed in the 14th year of Qianlong (1749) and combines elements of the "Tiger Spear Division's Tiger Spear" and the "Green Standard Army Nail Spear". It has round stoppers to keep the opponent at a distance and a sharp edge glued in the shaft to prevent the opponent from grabbing it.

No antique examples seem to have survived, but the spear is described in the Huangchao Liqi Tushi (皇朝禮器圖式) of 1766:1

Jianruiying long spear

"According to the regulations set in the 14th year of Qianlong;

Jianruiying Long Spear: Spearhead made of forged steel.
Overall 1 zhang 3 cun long. Spearhead is 9 cun long, with triangular point with a central ridge.
The wooden shaft is 9 chi long and the circumference is 4 cun 6 fen.
It has steel edge like a knife inserted in the side, glued into the spear, that is 1 chi 4 cun long and 5 fen wide.
Under [the spearhead] are connected two wooden balls with black horsehair. The iron fitting at the end is 4 cun long."

Converted in cm2
Overall: 360.5 cm
Head: 31.5 cm
Shaft: 315 cm
Shaft diameter: 5.1 cm
End fitting: 14 cm

Jianruiying spearA schematic drawing of the Jiànruìyíng Chángqiāng I made based on the above description.



Visualization of spears of the Qing dynasty

Spears of the Qing dynasty.
#2 is the Jiànruìyíng Chángqiāng or "Jianruiying Long Spear".
The figure is 175 cm tall.
Click to enlarge


1. Based on a 1 chi equals 35 cm conversion.
2. Huangchao Liqi Tushi (皇朝禮器圖式) of or "Illustrated Regulations on the Ceremonial Paraphernalia of the Dynasty". An illustrated work commissioned by the Qianlong emperor in 1750, the first manuscript was finished in 1759 and the first woodblock-printed edition was completed in 1766.

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