Ornamented Liuyedao, the willow leaf saber, are commonly seen in the portraits of Qing Beile (Lords, Nobles) and their bodyguards. These portraits feature the sword and scabbard with a squared fangshi style grip and more ornamentation then is seen on the more common soldiers swords. These Dao are influenced by the Mongolian sabers with their downward-curving grips and a stylized blade collar at the guard. The Chinese however discarded the quillon crossguards of the Eurasian swords in favour of a Japanese inspired tsuba-like guard. Liuyedao such as these first appeared in the Ming Dynasty and reached the apex of popularity in the Qing Dynasty.
The embellishments in the fittings and wood carvings on the scabbard exemplify the keen taste for opulence embedded in late-period Qing nobility (1736-95). The wood-carved dragons on the scabbard are four-clawed a representation of the nobility (five claws were reserved for the Emperor).
This Liuyedao was made in Longquan, a region central to sword production in the Song Dynasty. The blade is folded high-carbon steel of 1045 and 1065 containing containing 6,600 layers. It is regarded as the higher quality steel from this manufacturer and has a more finished polish that brings out its layering detail. The fittings are of handmade brass and the scabbard and grip are of darkened wood. The sword comes in a dark brown gift box with a boxed cleaning kit and a silk-embroidered sword bag.