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Michael O





Joined: 03 May 2014

Posts: 2

PostPosted: Sat 03 May, 2014 1:22 pm    Post subject: 6th - 10th Century swords         Reply with quote

First Sorry for the bad English its not my native language

Hello i am new to this forum i love swords and history in general i have a question about 6th- 10th century swords

whenever i search for swords from this periods the only pictures that come up are viking swords
while searching other periods like classic age and late medieval / renaissance there is great variety of swords i can find

what i want to know if the viking sword was so popular that it pretty much was the only sword used in this period even in Italy, French, Spain, North Africa, and the rest of Europe and Mediterranean

i don't know if i am doing something wrong because i have been searching for the past 10 hours and couldn't find anything else then viking influenced swords beside scimitar that was used in the far middle east iran/iraq

i know the vikings expended pretty much everywhere and arming sword only developed later but are there any other type of swords in this periods ? thanks ! Happy
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Timo Nieminen




Location: Brisbane, Australia
Joined: 08 May 2009
Likes: 1 page
Reading list: 1 book

Posts: 1,494

PostPosted: Sat 03 May, 2014 2:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

It's not so much that Viking swords were used all through Europe, but that Vikings used the same types of swords that most people in Europe used.

Within Europe, you'd find different swords in use in Byzantium (Byzantine swords), Spain (Arab swords), and Eastern Europe (steppe swords).

China: Iron and Steel Swords of China, text is Chinese, photos are excellent.
Central Asia: De l'Epee scythe au sabre mongol, text is French, some photos, but mostly drawings.
Persia: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=29518 and Arms and Armor from Iran, which is a magnificent book.
Byzantium: http://www.levantia.com.au/military/weapons.html and more generally http://www.levantia.com.au/
Arabia/Syria: Some of the swords attributed to Mohammad are typical for this period: http://www.usna.edu/Users/humss/bwheeler/swords/swords_index.html and http://seerah.hpage.ms/swords-of-prophet-muhammad_33232366.html

"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
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Michael O





Joined: 03 May 2014

Posts: 2

PostPosted: Sat 03 May, 2014 3:33 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Timo Nieminen wrote:
It's not so much that Viking swords were used all through Europe, but that Vikings used the same types of swords that most people in Europe used.

Within Europe, you'd find different swords in use in Byzantium (Byzantine swords), Spain (Arab swords), and Eastern Europe (steppe swords).

China: Iron and Steel Swords of China, text is Chinese, photos are excellent.
Central Asia: De l'Epee scythe au sabre mongol, text is French, some photos, but mostly drawings.
Persia: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=29518 and Arms and Armor from Iran, which is a magnificent book.
Byzantium: http://www.levantia.com.au/military/weapons.html and more generally http://www.levantia.com.au/
Arabia/Syria: Some of the swords attributed to Mohammad are typical for this period: http://www.usna.edu/Users/humss/bwheeler/swords/swords_index.html and http://seerah.hpage.ms/swords-of-prophet-muhammad_33232366.html



Thanks you saved me a lot of time do you happen to know what was used in Spain / North Africa ? did they use anything different then the viking type sword ?
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Timo Nieminen




Location: Brisbane, Australia
Joined: 08 May 2009
Likes: 1 page
Reading list: 1 book

Posts: 1,494

PostPosted: Sun 04 May, 2014 1:35 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

From the Osprey Men-at-Arms book, http://www.myArmoury.com/books/item.1855329646.html you'd be looking at a mix of "Viking" swords (probably Frankish) and "Mediterranean" swords, which look very much like Byzantine swords.
"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
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X Zhang





Joined: 07 Aug 2011

Posts: 40

PostPosted: Sun 04 May, 2014 3:06 am    Post subject: Re: 6th - 10th Century swords         Reply with quote

Michael O wrote:
First Sorry for the bad English its not my native language

Hello i am new to this forum i love swords and history in general i have a question about 6th- 10th century swords

whenever i search for swords from this periods the only pictures that come up are viking swords
while searching other periods like classic age and late medieval / renaissance there is great variety of swords i can find

what i want to know if the viking sword was so popular that it pretty much was the only sword used in this period even in Italy, French, Spain, North Africa, and the rest of Europe and Mediterranean

i don't know if i am doing something wrong because i have been searching for the past 10 hours and couldn't find anything else then viking influenced swords beside scimitar that was used in the far middle east iran/iraq

i know the vikings expended pretty much everywhere and arming sword only developed later but are there any other type of swords in this periods ? thanks ! Happy







581-618,China


Last edited by X Zhang on Sun 04 May, 2014 8:02 am; edited 5 times in total
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Matthew Bunker




Location: Somerset UK
Joined: 02 Apr 2009

Posts: 483

PostPosted: Sun 04 May, 2014 4:49 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Try searching for 'Vendel sword' 'Anglo Saxon ringhilt', 'Merovingian sword' etc.

This will throw up swords from North West Europe for the 6th - 7th century. It helps to know the names of the cultures that you're interested in, not just the period.
Happy

There weren't any Viking swords in the 6th -7th century because there weren't any Vikings.

"If a Greek can do it, two Englishman certainly can !"
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Lafayette C Curtis




Location: Indonesia
Joined: 29 Nov 2006
Reading list: 7 books

Posts: 2,689

PostPosted: Fri 16 May, 2014 5:08 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michael O wrote:
Thanks you saved me a lot of time do you happen to know what was used in Spain / North Africa ? did they use anything different then the viking type sword ?


You'd better check out the cultures that dominated those areas in the relevant periods. Spain in the 6th century was probably still Visigothic; in the late 7th or early 8th century it was invaded by a mixture of Arabs (who had gone a very long way from home indeed) and from that point on it saw a series of conquests and reconquests going back and forth between the Christian kingdoms in the north and Muslim principalities in the south (with plenty of cultural and military exchanges going both ways). Meanwhile, North Africa was in the hand of the Vandals before it was reconquered by the Eastern Roman Empire (yes, the Byzantines) in the mid-6th century (look up Belisarius, Narses, and Procopius) before the Arab Conquest swept over it in the 7th and 8th centuries. At this point, the swords in the area probably still had strong traces of Late Roman influence, particularly from the spatha and the early seaxes that were popular among the early Roman army. Think flat, broad, sometimes multi-fullered blades with a variety of mostly-organic hilts. But it's worth noting that the Vikings (and later the Normans) raided well into the Mediterranean so there might have been some exchange in material culture that way as well.
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