Object Title

Catch pole (sode garami)

Catch pole (sode garami)



Object Number



Presented by the Wellcome Museum of Historical Medicine, 1955.

Physical Description

The head proper consists of a top spike that emerges from two forgings, each of which comprises a central disc with three radial arms that end in barbed heads. The arms of the upper disc are bent downwards and those of the lower disc upwards. The head is mounted on a short conical iron habaki. The upper part of the shaft has nailed to it three longitudinal iron strips studded with spikes. There is a hand-stop of hemp, lacquered red, below which the shaft has been cut through.


Dimensions: The length of the head is 69 mm, the distance to the hand-stop is 450 mm and the overall length is 890 mm. Weight: The weight of the weapon is 0.63 kg.

Inscriptions and Marks



Places Japan


When complete these weapons were about six foot long and used by the police during the Edo period for aprehending criminals by tangling their clothes. They were normally stored in racks with two other similar weapons by gates , theatres and so forth. During the Momoyama period they were used in war for dragging men off horses.