The gwalaa is the dagger of the Tlingit people of northwestern North America, used either for war or for personal protection. Originally made of copper or meteoric iron, later daggers were made from salvaged steel or trade blades. Characteristics include intricately carved pommels, usually representing animals common to the region.


  • 1 steel, Tlingit - Chichagof Island, Alaska, United States
  • 2 ixt'i xook gwalaa "emaciated shaman dagger" steel, Tlingit - prob. British Columbia, Canada
  • 3 keet gwalaa "killer whale dagger", meteoric iron-nickel, Tlingit - British Columbia, Canada
  • 4 xoots gwalaa "brown bear dagger", steel, Tlingit - Angoon, Alaska, United States