Does this pose of raising your sword with your right hand have any significance? For example, is this a famous pose used by a real life legendary swordsman? Both Zoro of One Piece and Erza of Fairy Tail have used this pose.

Zoro's pose Erza's pose

  • Please let me know if the images used are a problem. I will replace them depending on what the problem is.
    – Masked Man
    Feb 3, 2013 at 6:29
  • I don't think the images are a problem based on the replies I got to this meta question.
    – Cattua
    Feb 3, 2013 at 18:10
  • The images are not a problem because they are needed to illustrate the question. In other words, they are not a problem because they are not added gratuitously. Feb 4, 2013 at 19:47
  • good observation, correlating two anime like that. :)
    – user1466
    Feb 14, 2013 at 19:08

3 Answers 3


I don't think it is reference to anything specific since it's overly common whenever swords are (and sometimes when they aren't) involved in media.

In general:

  • it looks cool
  • it's usually a show of triumph by combining display of:

    • dominance (as other poses that make body "unwrap")
    • combat impracticality (no one is doing this in the middle of it)

tvtropes call it StabTheSky.

  • 2
    And it shows the audience that the user can still rise his sword and isn't destroyed to the bone, maybe.
    – Tartori
    Feb 4, 2013 at 13:41
  • In both the above pictures, the characters took up the pose not during a battle, but to signify a "badass moment", so this makes sense. I think it would look quite lame if someone just stands in that pose for long during a battle. :P
    – Masked Man
    Feb 4, 2013 at 17:44
  • 1
    Yep, that's under combat impracticality point - it can signify "everyone who can take advantage of me doing this posh vulnerable pose is lying around in pieces" - Erza's case. :)
    – Rarst
    Feb 4, 2013 at 17:51
  • Hmm, good to join this site. tvtropes looks like interesting. thanks for link. :):)
    – user1466
    Feb 14, 2013 at 19:08
  • As said above. I would say it is not specific to anime / manga, Frazetta painted barbarians with this attitude long before manga was popular in the USA... See for example the galaxywarriorsbysungold.blogspot.fr/p/artwork.html page showing several of these poses.
    – PhiLho
    Apr 17, 2013 at 12:09

To add on to Rarst's answer, the pyramid-shaped stance naturally channels the viewer's gaze to the sword, especially to its tip. This places focus on the "warrior spirit", typical of a declaration of victory. The "warrior spirit" is raised to a high position by the stance, which further befits the idea of "dominance".


I don't think there is a hidden meaning behind this. In my opinion, it is just a pose that shows determination. It could be also used a salute. For example, a "classical" sword salute looks like this:

The Olympic Flame is also carried this way:

So I would say that this pose means just that, no special hidden meaning involved. And yeah, it also looks cool.

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