I am please to release my review of the Arms & Armor aunlaz dagger. Also, I have a transcript of the video.
“Today I am going to be reviewing the Arms & Armor Aunlaz Dagger.
The Aunlaz dagger is a unique and identifiable style of dagger notable by the shape of its hilt and pommel. Known by other names also such as antennae dagger, it’s referenced as the quillion dagger by the Royal Armories. It has an aesthetics that is vaguely reminiscent of anthropomorphic Iron Age weapons. The guard and pommel sweep away from the grip, making this distinct curl at the end of each bar. Similar in profile to basilards, aunlaz daggers were often found with this curl here wrapped around another piece of metal, such as more steel, or copper, or latten. Though this forward sweeping curl to the crossguard reminiscent of many different types of daggers, the Aunlaz is very distinct for having a pommel that is nearly symmetrical and opposite the design to the quillion. It has a double edged flattened diamond blade which tapers to a strong point. Visual and archeological finds place this dagger in use as early as the 12th century and goes until the end of the 14th when its popularity declined.
This dagger came out of the box clean and shiny, with the finish that you see here. I have done nothing extra to it. As I said, it’s not to an edge, you can’t shave with it or cut paper. I have no expertise with steel types myself, but I am assured it will hold an edge if applied. Make no mistake, it’s still a functional dagger of solid construction and it can hurt or kill anyone you stab with it. So, here’s your general disclaimer: don’t stab people. This is not a toy and it’s not a sparring tool. This dagger is held together with a handsome wooden grip. None of it wiggles or feels loose. Though this blade is no pocket knife when it comes to length, it’s really not a terribly large dagger, especially in comparison to descriptions we have of some extant daggers which really blur the line between a long knife and a short sword. Even more noticeable really, is how short this grip is. While I accept that I have large hands, don’t even get me started on trying to find gloves at Tractor Supply, it really is a bit snug when gripped in hand. Handling it in a gauntlet is absolutely impossible. Now, in comparison, it’s much more roomy in the hand of my wife. In actual dimensions it is about 13.5 inches overall, with a 9 inch long blade, its 3 and a quarter inch long handle. The handle and the blade are all about an inch wide. The whole dagger is 3 inches wide at the quillions which more or less matches the dimensions on the website.
This dagger is not out of the box a nobleman’s dagger without modification. It could accept decoration that would elevate its status, but out of the box it is appropriate for a commoner impression, or that of the simpler yeomanry. It seems to be more popular in the 13th and 14th centuries based on manuscript imagery. It’s not a utilitarian knife, it’s much more suitable for impressions with a martial angle to them. So, think of an armored impression, but of the simpler man at arms or maybe a peasant levy; this could also be worn on the camp impressions of somebody on campaign in a war setting; it could also be used as part of a para-martial impressions where you think there might be a tussle such as a forester, or someone traveling on dangerous roads. And then think of something you might grab in response to the hue and cry. Things like that. As I mentioned a few times before, this is a functional dagger, and so all the care and consideration is required when wearing this dagger, such as not wearing it with an impression where some friendly combat is expected to happen. Don’t use it as an ornamentation in a HEMA tournament where you could confuse it for a sparring applicable dagger. The same thing if you’re doing, maybe, like a live battle demonstration. This version of the aunlaz dagger is not the best choice.
Overall I am incredibly happy with this dagger. I was fortunate to have won it as part of a Swords Without Borders fundraiser, years and years ago now, but if I were to have purchased it today, and received what I have now, it would have been entirely worth the money spent. It has definitely confirmed, to me, the Arms & Armor’s company reputation of high quality, care, and service. Thank you for reading.”