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Christian Böhling
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PostPosted: Sat 04 Jun, 2011 11:38 am    Post subject: Illerup Lance Head         Reply with quote

Hi Friends,

after a long time of not posting - here my new Black-Series of Lance heads. The big one is of the scandinavian Type Vennolum which is the Type 15 Lance head in the Illerup Bog in Denmark and it dates 200 A.D. It is 44,5 cm long. The smaller one dates to the early first century and was originally found in Harsefeld near Hamburg. I hope they all show the main characteristics of the most underrated weapon (and most under-prized Happy )...

I hope I will find time to do a blued series with silver-inlays and a black with silver, too next months. I will post them when I got them done.

Hope you like them.....

Yours

Christian Böhling



 Attachment: 164.24 KB
Harsefeld und IllerupMyArmoury.jpg


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IllerupTyp15AlbringMyArmoury.jpg


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Last edited by Christian Böhling on Mon 06 Jun, 2011 5:28 am; edited 1 time in total
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Henrik Zoltan Toth




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PostPosted: Sat 04 Jun, 2011 1:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Wow, those are really nice!! I like lanceheads.
I don"t know the correct english words, also, hast du die Lanzen ohne oder mit Gesenken geschmiedet? :-)))

Regards:

Zoltán
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Christian Böhling
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PostPosted: Sat 04 Jun, 2011 4:35 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Henrik Zoltan Toth wrote:
Wow, those are really nice!! I like lanceheads.
I don"t know the correct english words, also, hast du die Lanzen ohne oder mit Gesenken geschmiedet? :-)))

Regards:

Zoltán


Hi Zoltán,

...ich habe feine Gesenke benutzt, die speziell dafür angefertigt wurden Happy

I used several forging dies getting finer step by step, then I forged down the sides and made them wider and ended up with cold forging...

Greets
Christian Böhling

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Gregg Sobocinski




PostPosted: Sat 04 Jun, 2011 7:02 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Those look fantastic. I really enjoy seeing well made, interesting spear and lance heads out there.

Thanks for sharing!
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Peter Johnsson
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PostPosted: Sat 04 Jun, 2011 11:39 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Very good work!

Beautiful creation of a beautiful type.

It makes sense to think that these were made in large numbers by specialized smiths, does it not?
(with the special dies and tools used)

Looking forward to see more.
:-)
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Christian Böhling
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PostPosted: Sun 05 Jun, 2011 2:38 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Peter Johnsson wrote:
Very good work!

Beautiful creation of a beautiful type.

It makes sense to think that these were made in large numbers by specialized smiths, does it not?
(with the special dies and tools used)

Looking forward to see more.
:-)



Hi Peter, great you like it!

Yes, those large numbers of lance and spear heads in a clone-like manner gave me much to think about.....we do some experiments here in my workshop creating dies and special tools to find out how they could do them in that huge production numbers. I don´t think, that one lance was made from the first to last step by only two hands, I can imagine labor division.
After research of the inner structure of those lance heads, it could have been done like this:
One smith just forged the sockets with the center bar, the next did te welding of sockets and welded the blade material to the center bar, the next used dies to brink them into the correct square section and pre-shaped them, and finally the grinders, who just grinded and polished.....I think we have to give up the common opinion, that one single smith did all work (I think the roman fabricae influenced the germanic workshops much in those days, if these lances have really been produced in scandinavia like Moesgard Archeologists say [and I don´t think]).

Greetings to Sweden

Christian Böhling

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David Huggins




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PostPosted: Sun 05 Jun, 2011 10:49 pm    Post subject: Lance         Reply with quote

Very nice work Christian. Look forward to seeing further re-creations.

best
Dave

and he who stands and sheds blood with us, shall be as a brother.
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Peter Johnsson
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PostPosted: Sun 05 Jun, 2011 10:58 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I would not be surprised if those in power who dominated the military scene learnt how to organize production through personal experience in roman service. I think there were power players who could pull together the right sort of people to get the job done. In my mind they found a way to combine roman and germanic traditions and solutions, fining rational ways to organize military matters, production of raw material and production of weapons. Some stuff was imported, but much was made locally, like spears, shield bosses, knives, archery equipment, horse gear (the kind of equipment that seems to be typical for various scandinavian/german areas: and as they are typical for *areas* we must think that the production was capable of quite some volume, hence effective and specialized just as yo suggest.)
Specialized production would not be a new thing either. It is what we see being done in close vicinity to where chieftains and kings live. I think there is a tradition already for that, although it could be enhanced and taken further.

It was the kings and chieftains of this period who built the wealth, power and influence of the Vendel period kings. There must have been some pretty ambitious and crafty people running the show for some generations to reach such levels of wealth and glorious display.
It would not be outside their ability to organize rational production (and import) of weapons for their troops, I think.

Christian, it is really great that you keep at it like this. I really appreciate your work!
(we must talk more: I will contact you)
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David Huggins




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PostPosted: Mon 06 Jun, 2011 1:37 am    Post subject: illerup         Reply with quote

Looking at the formation of 'Central' places by local power brokers or 'Elites' appears to be have been a continuation of developing changes within society. Certainly earlier sea and land defence construction would indicate a regulation of available man-power.

best
Dave

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E. Storesund





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PostPosted: Mon 06 Jun, 2011 2:48 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Peter Johnsson wrote:
I would not be surprised if those in power who dominated the military scene learnt how to organize production through personal experience in roman service.


Certainly. I believe Jørgen Ilkjær argues that the supposedly "Norwegian" army (of Illerup A(??)) might be connected with the flagghaug burial at Avaldsnes, who fits the bill regarding the time period and was buried with several roman items. Apparently the burial represents a status there is little akin material to in the period, some which is claimed to parallel the material from illerup. It is argued he was either an ally of - or an officer in - the Roman army.
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Arne Focke
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PostPosted: Mon 06 Jun, 2011 4:12 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

That is certainly the best Vennolum Type reproduction that I've ever seen (or handled).
I tried my hand on one like that, but it wasn't nearly as nice in the end. That may have been due to the hand polishing for those lance heads I experimented with at the time. Wink

I did research on the decorations of the bog found lance-heads in my masters thesis. Many of the Illerup find clearly showed that they were made by the same workshop. Many of the punched decorations were of exactly the same size, showing that the same punch was used.
Others, even from other bog finds, were so close that you needed a binocular to see the difference, especially the ones consisting of concentric rings. It looked like a size standard for those things.

So schön und inhaltsreich der Beruf eines Archäologen ist, so hart ist auch seine Arbeit, die keinen Achtstundentag kennt! (Wolfgang Kimmig in: Die Heuneburg an der oberen Donau, Stuttgart 1983)
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Christian Böhling
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PostPosted: Mon 06 Jun, 2011 5:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

So we meet in our opinions about organization of weapon production and clearify, that ancient warfare was not just a personal act of heorism, but a political motivated act - maybe hidden in the unvisible backgroud when the outlines show personal motivated engagement like perspective of plundering or personal ranking ambitions....

I think Arne and Peter are right when they say, the political power was in the hand of people, who served in the roman army.
It is interesting, that nearly all despositions in the offer sites could have been an echo or a response of things happened the same time or close before at the roman border-line....

@Arne, yes I tried myself very hard like you to get those lances done, and I am still not finally satisfied, because I still do not meet the exact precision of the originals. But we are on our way to find out the exact right construction of punches and dies to reach this clone-like character of the original items Happy

Thanks for your kind words about my work Happy



 Attachment: 126.86 KB
LanzeIllerupTyp15MA1.jpg


 Attachment: 127.73 KB
LanzeIllerupTyp15MA2.jpg
better comparison of original and recreation

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Henrik Zoltan Toth




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PostPosted: Mon 06 Jun, 2011 5:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This looks very nice, too.
I hope I can improve to this level. :-)
I saw in a doku "Sturm über Europa", Volume 4, Saxons, that on most of the weapons found in Nydam was the same "factory" mark.

Zoltán
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Arne Focke
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PostPosted: Mon 06 Jun, 2011 8:28 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

What always amazes me about those things is how incredibly thin the sockets are, material-wise and dimension-wise.
In most of those I examined i could barely fit my thumb in there (just for size comparison) and I have quite thin fingers.

So schön und inhaltsreich der Beruf eines Archäologen ist, so hart ist auch seine Arbeit, die keinen Achtstundentag kennt! (Wolfgang Kimmig in: Die Heuneburg an der oberen Donau, Stuttgart 1983)
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David Huggins




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PostPosted: Mon 06 Jun, 2011 8:50 am    Post subject: Illerup         Reply with quote

Quote:
So we meet in our opinions about organization of weapon production and clearify, that ancient warfare was not just a personal act of heorism, but a political motivated act - maybe hidden in the unvisible backgroud when the outlines show personal motivated engagement like perspective of plundering or personal ranking ambitions....

I think Arne and Peter are right when they say, the political power was in the hand of people, who served in the roman army.
It is interesting, that nearly all despositions in the offer sites could have been an echo or a response of things happened the same time or close before at the roman border-line....


These issues are pretty well discussed in a number of papers published within 'Military Aspects of the Aristocracy in Barbaricum in the Roman and Early Migration Period' The National Museum Studies in Archaeology & History Vol 5 Copenhagen 2001 ISBN 87-89384-72-5

best
Dave

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Christian Böhling
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PostPosted: Mon 06 Jun, 2011 11:11 am    Post subject: Re: Illerup         Reply with quote

David Huggins wrote:


These issues are pretty well discussed in a number of papers published within 'Military Aspects of the Aristocracy in Barbaricum in the Roman and Early Migration Period' The National Museum Studies in Archaeology & History Vol 5 Copenhagen 2001 ISBN 87-89384-72-5

best
Dave


Hey Dave, thank you for mentioning these papers! That reminds me, that I held it in hand but could not decide to buy them....

@Arne, we have some lances here in our small "Museum Schnippenburg" which are from "celtic" origin, and they have sockets of less than 0,5 mm material thickness and there is no place for the smallest finger of my girl! But you know what really surprised me was the thickness of the lances blade-sides of both, the Illerup and the celtic pieces - just a thin sheet !
Most people have not seen them in original and just know them from drawings and Photographs, which too often just show them from the broad side and the drawing of square section does not really show, how thin the blades are in real because they are often drawn too thick.... So I hope that there will be standards in the future to draw the exact dimensions and it should be a duty to draw square sections of more than one or two parts of these lances...

Next thing I often have to think about is: To be a deadly weapon it would have been enough to forge the lances in a simple triangular shape and give it a socket to fix it to a shaft, but they where kind of "overdone" to perfection in every detail - products of arts - and not one single piece for prestige reasons, but hundreds of them for the prestige of the leader who gave them to the warriers, and after they had been produced they were given out to the warriers just to be witnesses in one single battle. And after all, they were not taken by the victorious troups, but thrown in the lake. What a strange thing for us modern people who try to get as much as we can get and keep it and like Pirates of the caribbean say "never give it away" Happy

Greets to all

Christian Böhling

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David Huggins




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PostPosted: Mon 06 Jun, 2011 12:30 pm    Post subject: illerup         Reply with quote

Your welcome Christian. I would also recommend a read of 'Iron Age Societies From Tribe to State in Northern Societies in Northern Europe 500 BC to AD 700' by Lotte Hedeager 1992.
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Iron-age-Societies-B-...0631171061

regards
Dave

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Peter Cowan




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PostPosted: Mon 06 Jun, 2011 5:56 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

i must say these are beautiful lance heads. Would they be the same as spear heads?
I look forward to seeing the silver inlay in the blued and the black spear head.
Although timeline wise, I like the 6th to early 8th cent. I have now become interested in earlier centuries,
thanks to your pictures.
I also, like the most underrated weapon myself.
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Arne Focke
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PostPosted: Tue 07 Jun, 2011 12:39 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

@Christian: You probably know about the statistic Jørgen Ilkjaer did with shields/shield-bosses, to show that there most likely was a chain of command in those troops?
My statistic from the decorations on the lance-heads corresponds nicely with that.

The majority of those lance show no, or very little, decoration. Despite that they were still wonderfully crafted. My guess is that this was done to safe some steel. A diamond shape is easier to forge, but needs much material. A thin lance like these needs very little, but needs that strong central ridge for support.
Some tests on those lances also show that they were build in forge welded construction. A rod of softer iron welded to a rod of steel. This package was then given the lance shape.
Some of the examined lances show, that those two materials didn't come out equally on both sides of the lance. Maybe the blacksmith couldn't tell anymore after the weld how they lay in the package. Sometimes even to a degree were one side of the blade was just steel and the other just iron. Maybe further proof for more than one person doing the work?

@Peter:
Lance-heads are meant to be wielded, spear-heads are thrown. This of course only a rough guideline, you can of course also throw a lance, but not as far due to the bigger/heavier head.
The lances/spears from the bog finds are defined by more technical means. Heads with a leaf shape blade, like the Vennolum above are referred to as lance heads. Heads with barbs are referred to as spears. There are of course smaller leaf blade heads, which were most likely meant to be thrown, but archaeologists like to sort their finds by strict rules ...
The Vennolum type is definitely a lance, by both definitions. Wink

So schön und inhaltsreich der Beruf eines Archäologen ist, so hart ist auch seine Arbeit, die keinen Achtstundentag kennt! (Wolfgang Kimmig in: Die Heuneburg an der oberen Donau, Stuttgart 1983)
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Christian Böhling
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PostPosted: Tue 07 Jun, 2011 3:17 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Arne Focke wrote:

Some tests on those lances also show that they were build in forge welded construction. A rod of softer iron welded to a rod of steel. This package was then given the lance shape.
Some of the examined lances show, that those two materials didn't come out equally on both sides of the lance. Maybe the blacksmith couldn't tell anymore after the weld how they lay in the package. Sometimes even to a degree were one side of the blade was just steel and the other just iron. Maybe further proof for more than one person doing the work?


Yes this is exact what makes me believe in some kind of mass producing, even if they are beautifully made, but nevertheless - mass-products!

I am really happy that this recreation of an Illerup-Lance provoked once more a really interesting special discussion of this exiting theme! Thank you all for that!!

Greets

Christian Böhling

www.archaeoschmiede.de
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