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Pole Weapons

Medieval life and Times

Description of Medieval Pole Weapons
The weapons used the Medieval times include a group of weapons called Medieval Pole Weapons. The description of  Medieval Pole Weapons provides basic facts and information about the different types of polearm weapons:

  • Medieval Pole Weapons - This type of Medieval weapon consisted of a razor-sharp blade mounted on a wooden shaft, or pole which was between 4 and 14 feet long!

  • Used as a versatile weapon against knights on horseback. These weapons were constantly developed and refined to include metal rims over the shaft making them more effective. The pole increased in length to produce more versatile fighting weapons
  • Soldiers were trained in various manoeuvres to Strike, Swing, Cleave and Poke their enemies by effective use of the pole and the head weapon
  • Langets were added to strengthen this type of weapon. Langets were metal strips riveted to the the shaft of Medieval Pole Weapons to reinforce the torque against the head, and to provide protection to the potentially weak point between the weapon-head and the shaft.
  • Soldiers who used the Medieval Pole Weapons were also armed with a dagger or a sword to enable them to battle enemies who had been unhorsed. This weapon was far too unwieldy to use in close combat
  • Type or group of weapons - Polearm - A group of pole-mounted weapons. Were all variations of poles measuring between 4 and 14 feet long with different 'heads' - spikes, hammers, spears, axe etc
  • Names of other types of Medieval Pole Weapons include Poleaxe - Polehammer - Bec de Corbin - Bec de Faucon - Hache
    • A Bec de Corbin was a type of polehammer which used in the 1400's
    • A Bec de Faucon was a polearm with a large hammer head instead of an axe which also featured a spike or curved fluke. The length was between five and seven feet long
    • The Hache bore an edged, axe shaped cutting blade on the front side with a small hammer head or curved spike on the back. The Hache also featured a long rectangular or diamond cross-sectioned spike at the top of the shaft
    • Halberd - A pike fitted with an axe head. This weapon had a broad, short axe blade on a 6 foot pole with a spear point at the top with a back spike
    • A Gisarme was a massive, ornate spear-like polearm of the 1600's
    • A Glaive was a broad-bladed, single-edged polearm. This consisted of an 18 butcher-knife on a 6 - 7 feet pole
    • Partisan was similar to the  gisarme but had a broad, sword-like blade ranging from 2 to 3 feet in length. The blade of the partisan was double-edged
    • Pike - This weapon consisted of a sharp spike blade mounted on a wooden shaft, or pole - referred to as a pikestaff
    • Pole Axe - This weapon consisted of a broad, short axe blade mounted on a wooden shaft, or pole, which was between 4 and 5 feet long
    • Spear - This weapon dates back to antiquity and was used for hunting and war, consisting of a shaft, usually of wood, with a sharpened head

The Medieval times were an extremely violent era in history featuring battles in both Europe and the Holy Land when the crusades, and the crusaders who fought them, were numerous. Feudal Lords and Knights and their men at arms used such weapons as the Medieval Pole Weapons in different types of warfare. The quest for power led to invasions of lands and territories which had to be fought for. Siege warfare, waged to win a castle or a walled town or city, was a frequent occurrence during the Medieval times. Warfare during the Medieval era called for a variety of weapon expertise. Knights and men-at-arms (who consisted of foot soldiers or archers) used different types of weapons. The Medieval Pole Weapons was predominantly used by a Foot Soldier. The weapons used were dictated according to status and position. The weapons, armor and horse of the Knight were extremely expensive - the fighting power of just one knight was worth 10 ordinary soldiers.

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