New spirit attached to time-honored Longquan sword
A troop of new recruits from Longquan each receives a sword as a gift before they went into the army on March 18. [Photo/zjol.com.cn]
A troop of new recruits from Longquan -- a county-level city administrated by Lishui in East China's Zhejiang province -- each received a sword as a gift before they went into the army on March 18, local media reported.
The sword is especially designed for newbie soldiers by the local government, to reward their courage and patriotism.
Each sword, crafted by the local Longquan Sword Factory, is 81 centimeters in length with each soldier's name and service serial number inscribed on it.
Longquan has a long history of making swords which have been awarded as national gifts to foreign dignitaries for a long time, playing an important role in making friends abroad as well as showcasing traditional Chinese culture.
More than 100,000 swords made by the Longquan Sword Factory are exported annually, according to Zhang Yesheng, who is in charge of the factory.
Zhang said 600 types of swords are produced every year and the factory is involved in sword research, production and sales, while also being a popular tourist attraction.
It takes more than three months to make a hand-made sword from design to delivery, said sword maker Zha Changwei, who has become something of an online influencer after introducing the process of sword-making via livestreaming.
With the help of online sales and its integration with cultural and educational events, the development and long-term future of the Longquan sword is assured, officials said.
March 24, 2021