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Max Ronnby




Location: Sweden, close to Gothenburg.
Joined: 04 Nov 2014

Posts: 12

PostPosted: Sun 09 Nov, 2014 12:58 pm    Post subject: Fiore's Sword Axe.         Reply with quote

"This sword is equally a sword and an axe. It should not have a sharp edge from the guard up to 6 inches from the point; its point should be sharp and its sharp edge should be about 6 inches in length. The small rondel under the hilt should be able to glide to about 6 inches from the point, but not beyond that. The hilt should be well tempered and sharp, and the pommel nice and heavy. All points must be well tempered and absolutely sharp. The front of the sword should be as heavy as the back; weight should be between *4 and 6 pounds* depending on how tall and strong the man bearing it is."

A weapon that seems to be the invention of Fiore himself, featured in two of his treatises, a weapon that combines longsword and pollaxe.
Has this been illustrated somewhere else than in treatises of Fiore, has a copy of it ever been found, or has it ever been replicated?

What are your theories regarding it?


Hope I'm not overstepping myself by creating another thread so quickly, and I really hope image uploading works from my phone.

Thank you all on beforehand. Happy



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Timo Nieminen




Location: Brisbane, Australia
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PostPosted: Sun 09 Nov, 2014 2:12 pm    Post subject: Re: Fiore's Sword Axe.         Reply with quote

Max Ronnby wrote:
weight should be between *4 and 6 pounds* depending on how tall and strong the man bearing it is.


According to http://www.personal.utulsa.edu/~marc-carlson/history/measure.html an Italian pound is 300-350g, so that would be 1.2kg to 2.1kg (1.2-1.8kg to 1.4-2.1kg, depending on the pound).

"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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Max Ronnby




Location: Sweden, close to Gothenburg.
Joined: 04 Nov 2014

Posts: 12

PostPosted: Sun 09 Nov, 2014 2:33 pm    Post subject: Re: Fiore's Sword Axe.         Reply with quote

Timo Nieminen wrote:
Max Ronnby wrote:
weight should be between *4 and 6 pounds* depending on how tall and strong the man bearing it is.


According to http://www.personal.utulsa.edu/~marc-carlson/history/measure.html an Italian pound is 300-350g, so that would be 1.2kg to 2.1kg (1.2-1.8kg to 1.4-2.1kg, depending on the pound).



That's not very heavy at all!

In a book by Greg Mele, he says that it should be around 12-15lbs(5.45-6.8 kg)
That sounds... Quite heavy! But Fiore says it should be heavy, and it is quite big.


"This sword is both a sword and an axe. Weighty things can be of great impediment to those that are light. This is also a Posta Di Donna, the noble high guard, who uses her malices to often deceive the other guards: you think I'm attacking with a cut when I'm instead, thrusting. All I have to do is to lift my arms over my head, and I can deliver a good, quick thrust."

Posta Di Donna La Soprana (The guard of the High Lady)



Adding another picture.



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Julian Reynolds




Location: United Kingdom
Joined: 30 Mar 2008

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PostPosted: Sun 09 Nov, 2014 3:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Looks like some kind of boar sword to me, with sharpened pommel and quillons....even has the crossbar behind the sharp point, to stop the boar running up the sword....

Is it possible he was unaware of what a boar sword is/was and got confused? Or was he looking for an alternative use for one, against human foes...?
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Max Ronnby




Location: Sweden, close to Gothenburg.
Joined: 04 Nov 2014

Posts: 12

PostPosted: Sun 09 Nov, 2014 3:26 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Julian Reynolds wrote:
Looks like some kind of boar sword to me, with sharpened pommel and quillons....even has the crossbar behind the sharp point, to stop the boar running up the sword....

Is it possible he was unaware of what a boar sword is/was and got confused? Or was he looking for an alternative use for one, against human foes...?



Indeed it looks a bit like one!
I do not think master Fiore was confused, he is considered one of the great masters of fencing, heh.



Another thing to add about the twelve to fifteen pound weight that a friend mentioned, if one calculates that through the Italian pound, it suddenly weighs around as much as a Montante, and then it all seems much more sensible and viable.
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Julian Reynolds




Location: United Kingdom
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PostPosted: Mon 10 Nov, 2014 2:45 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

More than just a little bit similar.....I'd say identical, particularly the first illustration above....


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Michael Chidester




Location: Brighton, MA
Joined: 01 Jul 2009

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PostPosted: Mon 10 Nov, 2014 6:30 pm    Post subject: Re: Fiore's Sword Axe.         Reply with quote

Timo Nieminen wrote:
Max Ronnby wrote:
weight should be between *4 and 6 pounds* depending on how tall and strong the man bearing it is.


According to http://www.personal.utulsa.edu/~marc-carlson/history/measure.html an Italian pound is 300-350g, so that would be 1.2kg to 2.1kg (1.2-1.8kg to 1.4-2.1kg, depending on the pound).

Actually, that translation (Leoni?) seems to have attempted to do the conversion for you. The actual text says it's between 5 and 7 pounds ("E vole esser di peso de .v. a .vii. libre"). Five Medieval Italian pounds at 350g each is 3.8 standard pounds, and seven converts to 5.4 lbs.

So, four to five and a half pounds, a heavy longsword or a light spadone.

Michael Chidester
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HEMA AllianceWestern Martial Arts Coalition
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Shahril Dzulkifli




Location: Malaysia
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PostPosted: Tue 11 Nov, 2014 5:50 am    Post subject: Fiore's Sword Axe         Reply with quote

This weapon looks kind of unique to me. It looks more like a sword-spear combination rather than sword-axe.

“You have power over your mind - not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength”

- Marcus Aurelius
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David Hohl




Location: Oregon
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PostPosted: Tue 11 Nov, 2014 6:25 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

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Michael Chidester




Location: Brighton, MA
Joined: 01 Jul 2009

Posts: 3

PostPosted: Tue 11 Nov, 2014 7:01 am    Post subject: Re: Fiore's Sword Axe         Reply with quote

Shahril Dzulkifli wrote:
This weapon looks kind of unique to me. It looks more like a sword-spear combination rather than sword-axe.

If you slide the rondel on this sword to the end, it will look pretty close to that one.


Michael Chidester
Wiktenauer Director
HEMA AllianceWestern Martial Arts Coalition
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T. Kew




Location: Cambridge, UK
Joined: 21 Apr 2012

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PostPosted: Tue 11 Nov, 2014 7:19 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

It's sword-axe as in pollaxe.

The spiked crossguard and weighted pommel means it can strike with serious force, hook and trip with the cross, thrust with both ends - all as if it were a pollaxe. Also it can thrust as a sword and be used from the half-sword, so be used to fight as a sword in armour.
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Chris Last




Location: Janesville, WI
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PostPosted: Tue 11 Nov, 2014 10:03 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig Johnson from Arms and Armor made one for Bob Charron, several years ago. It is heavy, ugly, and would tear through armor.
" Hang fires are all fun and games untill someone gets their eye poked out... by charging calvary." - J.Shoemaker

Chris Last
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William P




Location: Sydney, Australia
Joined: 11 Jul 2010

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PostPosted: Wed 12 Nov, 2014 5:15 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Chris Last wrote:
Craig Johnson from Arms and Armor made one for Bob Charron, several years ago. It is heavy, ugly, and would tear through armor.


you had me at 'would tear through armour.... Eek!

what did he test it on??
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