This Unearthly “Sword of Heaven” is Made of a 4-Billion-Year-Old Meteorite


This katana is a blade fit for a space samurai. It is made with metal from an ancient meteorite.

Image credit: Chiba Institute of Technology

Any well-crafted katana, or traditional Japanese sword, is a blade of beauty, but the Tentetsutou (“Sword of Heaven”) is even more extraordinary due to the materials it’s made of. The renowned blacksmith Yoshindo Yoshi crafted the blade of the sword from a fragment of the massive Gibeon iron meteorite that landed in Namibia in prehistoric times. The meteorite is estimated to have formed around 4 billion years ago.

The Sword of Heaven is now on permanent public display for the first time at the Chiba Institute of Technology at the Tokyo Skytree tower. It sits alongside a piece of the Gibeon meteorite.

A piece of the Gibeon meteorite on display at the Chiba Institute of Technology at the Tokyo. Image credit: Chiba Institute of Technology

The Gibeon meteorite was (re)discovered in the late 1830s by British explorer Sir James Alexander, who saw Namibian locals using Gibeon’s pieces to make tools and weapons. He took samples back to London, where it was verified that the rock came from space.

“It is thought that the first human encounters with iron were with iron meteorites, and the Sword of Heaven truly symbolizes the relationship between human technology and space,” the Chiba Institute notes.

This blade is out of this world. Image credit: Chiba Institute of Technology

You can see the rest of Gibeon at the Post Street Mall in Namibia, while Tentetsutou is on permanent display at CIT’s exhibit at the Skytree tower in Tokyo, Japan.

Wow, what a special sword… It would be the top choice in any computer game.

Sources: 1, 2

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