Nursery Rhymes

Throwing Axe

Medieval life and Times

Definition of a Throwing Axe
The Throwing Axe was a weapon used in Medieval Times by Foot Soldiers and occasionally knights. The Throwing Axe was hurled at the enemy, often being first swung around and over the head to obtain speed momentum and maximum penetration. The throwing axe required more skill and precision than the Battle Axe. For Additional facts and information click Axe.

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

  • Medieval Throwing Axe - These weapons were designed as single and double-headed axes. The Throwing Axe was cheap to use and required some skill and precision obtained through throwing practise
  • Used as a throwing weapon in the early Medieval period
  • Occasionally used in volleys designed to intimidate and disrupt the enemy
  • Effective in attack but poor as a weapon of defence
  • In early Medieval times some warriors used a special type of axe known as a 'francisca'. This type of axe was quite small but with a very heavy blade. The francisca was designed specifically for throwing and had been first used by the Franks
  • It was hurled as a lethal missile designed to penetrate armor plate and to shatter shields
  • The Medieval Throwing Axe weapon was mounted on a short shaft measuring about 1ft
  • The Throwing Axe had a crescent-shaped blade which measured about 5 inches between the upper and lower points of its broad cutting edge
  • A blow from a throwing axe could apply tremendous force and thrown from a distance of up to 40 feet
  • The weapon was primarily used as a cutting weapon
  • Type or group of weapons - Cutting Weapon

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 Throwing Axe 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 period. Warfare during the Medieval era called for a variety of weapon expertise. The Vikings favored the throwing axe as one of their weapons. Knights and men-at-arms (who consisted of foot soldiers or archers) used different types of weapons. The Medieval Throwing Axe was predominantly used by a Foot Soldiers. 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.

Medieval Throwing Axe 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 Soldiers to use the Medieval Throwing Axe was as follows :

  • Training method - The training method practised in the use of the Throwing hammer was based on strength and accuracy in hitting the target
  • A "hit" was scored in Medieval weapons training by making light contact with a defined target area or in the accuracy when hurling the Throwing Axe at a practise target

The Makers and Making of the Medieval Throwing Axe
This Medieval weapon blade was made by a Blacksmith. The materials required to make this weapon were:

  • Iron
  • Steel
  • Occasionally bronze
  • Wooden handles

Blacksmiths are usually associated with making weapons in a village smithy but Medieval blacksmiths were also an important part of a fighting army, making new weapons and repairing and the maintenance of old weapons.

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