The ngaw (Thai ง้าว ngao) is a pole-mounted blade used by elephant cavalry in Southeast Asia. It consists of a curved blade on the end of a wooden shaft, similar to the guan dao and bisento, with a hook between the blade and shaft for use as an elephant goad. It is a traditional weapon of the Thai martial artist Krabi Krabong.

One of these was likely used by the Siamese King Naresuan in the Battle of Yuthahatthi (1593) when he defeated and killed the Burmese crown prince Minchit Sra in single combat on elephant, ending a Burmese invasion of Ayutthaya.

A cut-down two-handed sword version of the ngaw is known as the ngaw son ("short polearm") or daab sri; these are most commonly found in the Chiang Mai region.

In the modern Thai language, the word ngaw is often used as a generic term to refer to any pole weapon, including those of European or fantastic design.



  • 1 steel, Thai, National Museum of Bangkok, Thailand (link in Thai)