The Palace Guards are a common enemy in the original Prince of Persia Trilogy.
The palace guards are the most common enemy throughout the game. They used varying types of swords and different color palettes, each palette being stronger than another. The first guards are, as you would expect from a the beginning of a video game are weaker than their palette-swapped predecessors seen in later stages.
The player need not worry about wasting five minutes on the first foe in the game. There are also other types of guards in the palace, such as a fat one that acts as a boss in one of the stages in the first game on the SNES version.