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Adam M.M.





Joined: 02 Aug 2014

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PostPosted: Fri 24 Jul, 2015 8:20 am    Post subject: Role of axes in the Early Middle Ages         Reply with quote

I'm a bit confused as to what role axes generally filled in the Early Middle Ages. I've heard they were used as sidearms instead of swords by those who couldn't afford swords, but also that they were sometimes preferred over swords because they were more effective against armour. Then there's the large two-handed axes that I assume were used as primary weapons, but in what context were these preferred over spears?
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Alexis Bataille




Location: montpellier
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PostPosted: Fri 24 Jul, 2015 8:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Heavy pole arms, 2 handed axes in this case, give more powerful blow than spears, but they strike slower. Against a shield wall you can perhaps strike shields to open a hole in defence. perhaps it was the main use in battle of hasting. some says it was against horses but i think spears can do better against horses.
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Lafayette C Curtis




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PostPosted: Thu 10 Sep, 2015 4:52 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The role they "generally"filled in the early Middle Ages, just like in any other age, was as tools. We have more finds than usual of axes specifically intended as weapons in this period, but they were still outnumbered by ordinary tool axes (some of which would have been suitable for use as weapons in a pinch).

As for specifically fighting-oriented axes, there's no broad generalisation that can encompass them all. Some were primary weapons carried in conjunction with secondary weapons (sometimes a sword, sometimes a lage knife/seax, sometimes a smaller axe). Some were back-up weapons for the spear. Some were just for showing off.
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Shahril Dzulkifli




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PostPosted: Mon 14 Sep, 2015 7:47 am    Post subject: Role of axes in the Early Middle Ages         Reply with quote

Axes play a major role in the early Middle Ages both as a weapon and a tool. Executioners would use bearded axes and the only thing missing is that there is little or no recorded use of double-bladed axes during this period.
“You have power over your mind - not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength”

- Marcus Aurelius
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
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PostPosted: Mon 14 Sep, 2015 2:46 pm    Post subject: Re: Role of axes in the Early Middle Ages         Reply with quote

Shahril Dzulkifli wrote:
Executioners would use bearded axes

Mainly in England. On the Continent the sword was the preferred execution tool.

Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen and Sword Books
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Pieter B.





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PostPosted: Tue 15 Sep, 2015 3:04 am    Post subject: Re: Role of axes in the Early Middle Ages         Reply with quote

Dan Howard wrote:
Shahril Dzulkifli wrote:
Executioners would use bearded axes

Mainly in England. On the Continent the sword was the preferred execution tool.



And with good reason!

Who in their right mind would want to be beheaded by an axe of all things?
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Robert Leach




Location: Manistee, Michigan
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PostPosted: Tue 15 Sep, 2015 4:07 pm    Post subject: Re: Role of axes in the Early Middle Ages         Reply with quote

Pieter B. wrote:
Dan Howard wrote:
Shahril Dzulkifli wrote:
Executioners would use bearded axes

Mainly in England. On the Continent the sword was the preferred execution tool.



And with good reason!

Who in their right mind would want to be beheaded by an axe of all things?



Hmmmm.....I'd rather avoid decapitation entirely, if feasible. Wink
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Pieter B.





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PostPosted: Wed 16 Sep, 2015 2:34 am    Post subject: Re: Role of axes in the Early Middle Ages         Reply with quote

Robert Leach wrote:
Pieter B. wrote:
Dan Howard wrote:
Shahril Dzulkifli wrote:
Executioners would use bearded axes

Mainly in England. On the Continent the sword was the preferred execution tool.



And with good reason!

Who in their right mind would want to be beheaded by an axe of all things?



Hmmmm.....I'd rather avoid decapitation entirely, if feasible. Wink


Well I fear it might become a normal occurrence soon.

Things have turned rather "medieval" in Michigan: http://edition.cnn.com/2015/09/14/health/michigan-plague/
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E.B. Erickson
Industry Professional



Location: Thailand
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PostPosted: Wed 16 Sep, 2015 5:40 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

One person with Bubonic plague, that they probably contracted in Colorado, does not make things in Michigan "medieval". As the article points out, the plague has never left us, and in the US it accounts for several deaths per year every year, especially in the western states. The article also points out that nowdays the plague is quite survivable, as long as it's treated early in the infection's development.

Take a look at what the CDC has for plague statistics: http://www.cdc.gov/plague/maps/

Hardly a medieval development.

--Eljay
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Robert Leach




Location: Manistee, Michigan
Joined: 03 Jan 2014

Posts: 11

PostPosted: Wed 16 Sep, 2015 2:20 pm    Post subject: Re: Role of axes in the Early Middle Ages         Reply with quote

Pieter B. wrote:
Robert Leach wrote:
Pieter B. wrote:
Dan Howard wrote:
Shahril Dzulkifli wrote:
Executioners would use bearded axes

Mainly in England. On the Continent the sword was the preferred execution tool.



And with good reason!

Who in their right mind would want to be beheaded by an axe of all things?



Hmmmm.....I'd rather avoid decapitation entirely, if feasible. Wink


Well I fear it might become a normal occurrence soon.

Things have turned rather "medieval" in Michigan: http://edition.cnn.com/2015/09/14/health/michigan-plague/


I got a start when I thought you were referring to decapitations.

The plague? Yes, that's a blast from the past we could do without, BUT, the treatments are a little more effective these days. And this April, (getting back on topic) in the next county south of me, a chap wacked his neighbor with an axe. Booze and arguments......
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