I've googled "defensive weapons" and looked at a lot of different kinds of swords, and I'm trying to figure out if there is a kind of sword - if one could be very choosy - that one might consider ideal for defensive rather than offensive fighting. The character serves as a kind of bodyguard, so it would also seem appropriate if it's a weapon that doesn't require being extremely close to the opponent. He sort of has to have a sword (even if it mostly functions as a status symbol or something, IDK), but I don't know if there are any other weapons that would seem ideal for blocking attacks other than just a shield.
And yes, he has to be able to kill somebody if necessary, but any kind of weapon that is usually meant for weakening rather than slaying an opponent would be great. It doesn't matter where or when the weapon was used.
As for pistols, they exist but aren't widely used yet, and not by this character.
And since I should probably start looking into this, what fighting styles would seem ideal for this character? Is there a mode of self-defense that would seem particularly effective in protecting another person from harm?