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A Pata (Sanskrit: ?? ) or sword gauntlet is a bladed weapon of the Rajputs from Northern India much like a short sword, except that the blade is integrated in a gauntlet. (The use of the term Pata vs. the Devangari ?? possibly dates to Portuguese terminology for the claw or hoof which the weapon resembles). Three other examples of swords unique to India are the Khanda, Katar and Urumi.
In use, it could be employed as a Katar, though the additional support from being laid along the forearm may have allowed them to be used as a slashing weapon too. It was considered to be a highly effective weapon for Infantrymen against heavily armoured cavalry. The Pata gradually evolved from 10 inch (25 cm) long Katar to sometimes as long as 44 inch (114 cm) long, double edged weapon.
Shivaji was believed to be a prominent user of this weapon during his time. One of his generals, Tanaji Malusare, used the weapon with both his hands during the Battle of Sinhagad, before one of his hands was cut off.
Emperor Akbar also used this weapon during the siege of Gujarat. The Rajput warriors are known to have used this weapon very effectively during Mughal Period. They also developed variations of Pata with matchlock pistols adjoining the handle too.
One of the best collections of this weapon can be seen at the Durbar Hall, Shiva Nivas Palace, at Udaipur, Rajasthan. The erstwhile rulers – the Royal Family of Mewar owns the collection. It is displayed along with many other medieval weapons.