Flails of the Ming Dynasty

Tie Lian Jia Bang (鐵鏈夾棒, lit. 'Iron chain with clubs')
Chinese Infantry Flail
Drawing of a Tie Lian Jia Bang, from 'Wu Bei Zhi (《武備志》)'.
Tie Lian Jia Bang is the Chinese version of two-handed infantry flail. It is also known as Lian Ting (連梃, lit. 'Linked staff'), Lian Jia Bang (連耞棒), and several other names.

Early references of this weapon can be found in the works of Warring States period Mo Zi (《墨子》) and Tang period Tong Dian (《通典》). However, according to Song period Wu Jing Zong Yao (《武經總要》), this weapon originated from a specialised cavalry weapon used by the nomadic enemies of China.

Qing Dynasty Dual Wielding Flails
A pair of flails, from 'Huang Chao Li Qi Tu Shi (《皇朝禮器圖式》)'.
By Qing period, this weapon was usually (but not exclusively) associated with Han Jun (漢軍, Han Banners). Qing flails were smaller and usually used in pairs.

Nowadays this weapon is known as Shao Zi Gun (梢子棍) by modern martial arts communities.

Lian Zhu Shuang Tie Bian (連珠雙鐵鞭, lit. 'Linked bead double iron whip')
Drawing of a Lian Zhu Shuang Tie Bian (highlighted), from 'Wu Bei Zhi (《武備志》)'.
Lian Zhu Shuang Tie Bian is a variant of common infantry flail that has two connected striking ends, making it an early predecessor of three-section staff.


  1. These are a favourite weapon of Joseon cavalry.

  2. @Jayson
    I know there is a section in Muyedobotongji that teaches horseback flail, but have no idea about how common it was among Joseon cavalry. What major war(s) did Joseon participate after Imjin?

  3. @Jayson
    Ahh, totally forget that one...aren't they got defeated in an instant?

  4. Rebellion of 이괄

    They saids army of 이괄's calvary armed with long flail so gorverment army cant match with them

    and some script saids "after musket were invented bow became useless and after flails swords are became useless

  5. "解圍突陣, 莫若鞭棍。 今番賊适馬軍七百人, 皆用鞭棍, 以此莫能當耳。"

  6. @s ss
    Good day and welcome to my blog! And thanks for the info!

  7. Hi!
    It's me again, I wanted to ask you if you have any accounts of flails being used by foot soldiers, and how common they were on the battlefield? Thank you!

    1. Good day.

      Flail was actually more commonly used by foot soldiers than cavalry. It was generally used to defend fortress wall, war carts, and other field fortifications. Not really common on he battlefield, but still used quite frequently.

      At the moment I can only recall one battle during Qing-Dzungar war where Qing infantry using flail to assault a Dzungar position.