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Luka Borscak




Location: Croatia
Joined: 11 Jun 2007
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PostPosted: Fri 10 Sep, 2010 6:58 pm    Post subject: Dane axes         Reply with quote

Hello good people! Happy I'm having a dane axe custom made and since I was not that much into axes before I would appreciate knowledgable people here explain me the difference between Petersen type L and M (with pictures please Wink )and dating of both types. As far as I know both types fall under large battle axes of late viking age/early middle ages but I'm not sure which type when exactly. Also, reading Peter Johnsson's recent post about them, I thought the thickness of the body might be tapering to 3mm before the ridge, and ridge about 7mm at the maximum. Is that alright? My smith is planning to do it from low carbon steel body and higher quality tool steel the welded on edge. I would also appreciate your comments on that. I showed him pictures from Hurstwick site http://www.hurstwic.org/history/articles/manu...ng_axe.htm and I think all dane axes shown there are type M and I would like to see some L's and know what are the main differences so that we can change the sketch while it's still time. Wink
Thanks, Luka.
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R D Moore




Location: Portland Oregon
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PostPosted: Fri 10 Sep, 2010 9:12 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm far from knowledgable about these two axes but I do have some information that may help. I was going to have one made too, untill some medical issues required the funds, so I have some references.
http://www.reference.com/browse/wiki/Danish_axe
http://www.unimus.no/foto/#/P=search/S=%25F8k...=312843KHM
C:\Users\Owner\Desktop\osprey dane axe\scan0003.jpg

And some pictures that Elling Polden and Peter Johnsson posted some time ago.



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axe_head_cross_section.jpg


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type L axe III.jpg
type L

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Type M axe.jpg
type m

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type m axe from johnsson.jpg
type m

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type m axe from johnsson II.jpg
type m

"No man is entitled to the blessings of freedom unless he be vigilant in its preservation" ...Gen. Douglas Macarthur
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Luka Borscak




Location: Croatia
Joined: 11 Jun 2007
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PostPosted: Sat 11 Sep, 2010 3:49 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks very much! So basically L is a bit smaller overall, has a bit bigger and pointier upper horn and is of a bit earlier date? What does that mean, 10th century, 11th? I usually like my pieces to be appropriate for as early date as possible in my chosen period so I might go with a type L. But I also want it to have about 9" long edge, who knows if that goes together?
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Audun Refsahl




Location: Norway
Joined: 15 Feb 2006

Posts: 82

PostPosted: Sat 11 Sep, 2010 4:09 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

yes, those are mid tenth and eleventh century.
I'm not 100% sure what types are the eariest mounted on 2 handed poles, but maybe have a look at type E? on the hurstwic page, second from top on right side. that type has been found in sice xl.

just bacon...
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Luka Borscak




Location: Croatia
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PostPosted: Sat 11 Sep, 2010 6:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

That one looks like a semi bearded type, is that so?
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Audun Refsahl




Location: Norway
Joined: 15 Feb 2006

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PostPosted: Sat 11 Sep, 2010 8:02 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

yes, you are right. Type C is a pure bearded axe, and type G has no trace of the beard left. Type E is right in the middle. It occupies the last half of the nineth century, possibly a little into the tenth. Now, if you want eighth century, you will have to find a bearded axe. I have no source of a bearded dane axe with me right now, as I said, I'm not quite sure how this development took place.
just bacon...
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Luka Borscak




Location: Croatia
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PostPosted: Sat 11 Sep, 2010 5:38 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ok, I'll probably go with type L. I went through Petersen axe typology translated by Elling Polden (thanks Audun and Ron!) and I think it suits my needs best. I'm still looking for comments about size, thickness and similar stuff! Happy
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Luka Borscak




Location: Croatia
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PostPosted: Sun 12 Sep, 2010 5:30 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Does anybody knows a good site with axe pictures? I would like to see as many pictures as possible to choose the one I like the most and then take that one to my smith.
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Audun Refsahl




Location: Norway
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PostPosted: Sun 12 Sep, 2010 9:08 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

here is a link to the norwegian university museum photo page. unfortunately elling hasn't translated this yet, I'll tell him to get started :P

http://www.unimus.no/foto/#/P=search/S=%25F8k...I=56419KHM

I just searched for axe (øks), so there are 1000 axes from stoneage til now, a little ekstra work for you:)
on the right side of the pictures there are some yellow and white writing.
the yellow word "gjenstand" means object. the word "tid" means time/period and the word "sted" means place of find.
"folkevandringstid" = migration era, "vikingtid" = viking age "middelalder" =middle ages

I hope someone has similar pages for sweden denmark germany and other countries as well, I have seen these pages but havent bookmarked them...

just bacon...
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R D Moore




Location: Portland Oregon
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PostPosted: Sun 12 Sep, 2010 9:40 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This first link is to a Byzantine Ivory depicting a warrior with a Danish style axe, and the hilt on his sword appears to depict a Peterson type X, U, V, or perhaps an R which are currently dated to the last half of the 9th through the first half of the 10th century. So based on that, I would assume the depicted axe head to be of a type L.
http://members.ozemail.com.au/~chrisandpeter/ivory/ivory.html

And this link is fron a forumite on a different forum from the Oslo Museum of Cultural History
http://www.swordforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=98963

"No man is entitled to the blessings of freedom unless he be vigilant in its preservation" ...Gen. Douglas Macarthur
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Luka Borscak




Location: Croatia
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PostPosted: Sun 12 Sep, 2010 1:47 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks guys! Quite a lot axes on those museum sites. Wink
Btw, totally off topic, but is this double fullered viking age sword??? It does look like it has 2 fullers...
http://www.unimus.no/foto/#/P=search/S=%25F8k...I=37974KHM
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Audun Refsahl




Location: Norway
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PostPosted: Sun 12 Sep, 2010 2:13 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

no, the light is fooling you. it is a really bad photo tho, they haven't been picky when they chose pictures...
just bacon...
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Luka Borscak




Location: Croatia
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PostPosted: Sun 12 Sep, 2010 3:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Audun Refsahl wrote:
no, the light is fooling you. it is a really bad photo tho, they haven't been picky when they chose pictures...


Ah, shame, it would be very cool if it was double fullered.

Back to topic, I gathered a few pictures of what I think are type L axes, if you see any of these are NOT type L, please say so! And I really don't know where I took which picture from, mostly from this forum, so sorry if I use pictures of any of you without mentioning you.

The upper middle one here:











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Cesare M Firenze




Location: Up state N.Y
Joined: 25 Sep 2009

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PostPosted: Sun 12 Sep, 2010 3:15 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm forging a large Dane axe with a 13'' blade and oak handle. the body will be mild steel and the edge will be w1.
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R D Moore




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PostPosted: Sun 12 Sep, 2010 3:47 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Your selection certainly fits within Petersen's typology for type L as I understand it... I love these axes.
"No man is entitled to the blessings of freedom unless he be vigilant in its preservation" ...Gen. Douglas Macarthur
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Elling Polden




Location: Bergen, Norway
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PostPosted: Mon 13 Sep, 2010 4:19 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Actually, the ones you have selected looks more like type M to me; the L type is more "boat shaped", with a longer blade compared to the edge, and a modest upper slope, while the type M is the archetypical "Broad axe" with a distinct upward slope...


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Øks L.jpg
Type L

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Type M [ Download ]

"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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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Mon 13 Sep, 2010 5:03 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Are there not axes like the second one posted by RD Moore, the badly rusted one, which can also be dated to the 12th century as well?
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Elling Polden




Location: Bergen, Norway
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PostPosted: Mon 13 Sep, 2010 6:15 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yes, both the type M and L remainedi in use in scandinavia all the way into the 13-14th century.
"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 Borscak




Location: Croatia
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PostPosted: Mon 13 Sep, 2010 6:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hm, then it seems I got it a bit wrong, thanks Elling! I'm still going with what I posted, no matter if it's type M, I just love that shape, the more pointed upper horn really opens some nice thrusting possibilities... Wink
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Jean Thibodeau




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PostPosted: Mon 13 Sep, 2010 7:34 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I like the blade shape of this one from A & A , the slope should give a cleaving and slicing cut and the top " horn " agressive enough to be used as a point to a degree.

The scale of this one is more modest: Not small but not huge, but a larger version could be made:
http://www.arms-n-armor.com/custom944.html

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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