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Luka Polacik




Location: Katowice, Poland
Joined: 11 May 2009

Posts: 3

PostPosted: Sat 15 Aug, 2009 3:41 pm    Post subject: XIII century spears shaft         Reply with quote

I am looking for any information on spear shafts made about 13 century. Their exact measures and wood used.

By the way, were some medieval spears used with one hand?

Thanks in advance for the replys.
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Maurizio D'Angelo




Location: Italy
Joined: 09 Feb 2009
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PostPosted: Sat 15 Aug, 2009 6:15 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The "spear", preferably made of wood ash or hornbeam (monoecious trees and shrubs including the genera Betula and Alnus and Carpinus and Corylus and Ostrya and Ostryopsis) or apple trees, was the pole that did not exceed three meters and ended with an iron-shaped lenticular, or in the shape of willow leaves in two wires.
The Rule in Chapter XXXVIII.
Maurizio
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Elling Polden




Location: Bergen, Norway
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PostPosted: Sun 16 Aug, 2009 3:40 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The norwegian sources says Ash is the prefered wood for spear shafts, and that the head shold be secured with one or two nails. However, no length is spesified.

One handed spears where still around, at least in places that used shield infantry, like scandinavia and Italy. My 13th c group uses them extensively. The combination of a shield around the neck and two handed spear is also quite viable, especially before plate would let you bounce most stabs.

"this [fight] looks curious, almost like a game. See, they are looking around them before they fall, to find a dry spot to fall on, or they are falling on their shields. Can you see blood on their cloths and weapons? No. This must be trickery."
-Reidar Sendeman, from King Sverre's Saga, 1201
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Luka Polacik




Location: Katowice, Poland
Joined: 11 May 2009

Posts: 3

PostPosted: Sun 16 Aug, 2009 2:31 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

OK. How about width of the shaft? Could you tell me your preferred proportion of the length to width.

By the way,I found that in the second half of 13th cent. some Italian cities started to use 5-6 meters long spears. Big Grin

What about "the crossguard" on the spear's head? Was it used in 13th c.?
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Elling Polden




Location: Bergen, Norway
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PostPosted: Mon 17 Aug, 2009 12:50 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Width varies. Some late viking age spears have VERY thin sockets, less than 20 mm. Medevial spears seem to have been sturdier, though.
We use 28 mm for two handed spears, and 22 for one handed spears.

in my experience, 2.5 to 3 m is a good length for a two handed spear. One handed spears should be a bit shorter, at 2-2,4 m

As for "Winged spears" they are in use in the middle ages as well. Manuscripts usually show a mixture of winged and non-winged spears, with winged spears beeing less common, but definitely not rare.
The same seems to apply to most periods in western europe, after charlemagne. The 9th century franks seems to have used winged spears almost exclusively. Later it is a question of personal taste.

"this [fight] looks curious, almost like a game. See, they are looking around them before they fall, to find a dry spot to fall on, or they are falling on their shields. Can you see blood on their cloths and weapons? No. This must be trickery."
-Reidar Sendeman, from King Sverre's Saga, 1201
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Luka Polacik




Location: Katowice, Poland
Joined: 11 May 2009

Posts: 3

PostPosted: Mon 17 Aug, 2009 5:22 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks Elling, thats everything I wanted to know. Big Grin
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