Nursery Rhymes

Quarterstaff

Medieval life and Times

Description of Medieval Quarterstaff
The weapons used the Medieval times include the Medieval Quarterstaff. The description of the Medieval Quarterstaff which provides basic facts and information about the weapon is as follows:

  • Medieval Quarterstaff - This weapon consisted of a long shaft of hardwood

  • The shaft consisted of a long, thick pole measuring between 6 - 9 feet (3.6 to 5.4 metres)
  • Quarterstaffs were sometimes reinforced with metal tips usually made of iron
  • Used as a close contact weapon with thrusting, sweeping, clubbing or striking actions
  • A blow could apply tremendous force cracking a mans head, or bones if unprotected
  • The weapon was primarily used for bludgeoning an opponent. It was used both to deliver crushing blows, and also to thrust like a spear
  • Type or group of weapons - Bludgeoning Weapon
  • The Medieval Quarterstaff was also known by names such Stave or Balkstaff

The Medieval times were an extremely violent era in history and all men were expected to have the skills and weapons to defend or attack enemies. The Medieval Quarterstaff was a cheap weapon to produce being made of ash, oak or hawthorn. It is therefore most commonly associated with the lower classes, although nobles and knights also practised with such weapons increasing their weapons skills, strength, speed and agility. This weapon was lethal and highly effective even against cutting weapons such as swords and daggers. Quarterstaffs offered the advantage of being extremely versatile. Blows from quarterstaffs could be alternated from striking, jabbing and bludgeoning to thrusting like a spear. The style of attack could therefore change extremely quickly making it difficult for the enemy to respond quickly. The weapon also had the advantage of its long length.

Medieval Quarterstaff Training
Skill in the use of Medieval weapons and understanding the strategy of Medieval Warfare was necessary and a played a vital part in Medieval life. The training required by a Foot Soldier to use the Medieval Quarterstaff  is as follows:

  • Training method - The training method practised in the use of the Medieval Quarterstaff was strenuous requiring great agility. Practise and training might include the use of a revolving platform. A pole was fixed on the revolving platform and heavy horizontal wooden rods at head and foot height were attached to the pole. Men had to jump and duck whilst standing on the revolving platform to avoid being struck
  • Men were taught how to whirl the heavy pole as a form of defence against an attack making it impossible for the enemy to launch an offensive
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