Aquilonians of the western provinces to a man, they had many points in common. They dressed alike - in buckskin boots, leathern breeks and deerskin shirts, with broad girdles that held axes and short swords - and they were all gaunt and scarred and hard-eyed - sinewy and taciturn.> - Beyond the Black River
In primitive cultures, short swords are scoffed at as little more than knives. However, in the Hyborian cultures such as Aquilonia or Nemedia, where shield walls and cavalry charges have become a reality of combat, short swords are prized for their ability to thrust and stab in spaces where no longsword could ever be wielded.
Because they are smaller and weigh less than other weapons, short swords are also faster to use and consume less stamina than their larger counterparts.