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Forum Index > Historical Arms Talk > Alleged Antique Bec de Corbin Reply to topic
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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Thu 11 Feb, 2016 8:34 am    Post subject: Alleged Antique Bec de Corbin         Reply with quote

I have found what is alleged to be a 15th-17th century Bec de Corbin for sale. From what I have seen in the pictures, I have my doubts about its age, and I have a feeling it's a 19th or 20th century piece. I'm curious as to what others think.





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Leo Todeschini
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PostPosted: Thu 11 Feb, 2016 10:53 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Couldn't comment on age, but the angle of the claws looks like they would spread if they hit a helm, and so this to me looks suspect.

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Casey S.




Location: TX
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PostPosted: Sun 14 Feb, 2016 7:40 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yep. Teeth of the hammer head look all wrong. Too long and thin. And like said, the angle looks bad too.
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Victor R.




Location: Spring, Texas
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PostPosted: Mon 15 Feb, 2016 4:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Looks like it's modeled after this, then buried in the back yard or left on the patio for a couple of years. No side spike - can't really call it a belt hook, given the angle. This one purports to be 19th century or earlier - maybe a Victorian fantasy piece?

http://www.ashokaarts.com/shop/swiss-or-germa...war-hammer
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Eric S




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PostPosted: Tue 16 Feb, 2016 12:31 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

A very expensive fake in my opinion.

£ 2,250.00
US$ 3,258.42
€ 2,914.51
AUD 4,553.63
CHF 3,208.58
CAD 4,504.08
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Sa'ar Nudel




Location: Haifa, Israel
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PostPosted: Tue 16 Feb, 2016 2:49 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

It is probably a modern repro made in India, not even 10 years old. I see lots of similar arms posted on ebay firsthand by suppliers from India, not claiming them to be old, but the description is vague. Once it changes hands, everything is possible.
Curator of Beit Ussishkin, regional nature & history museum, Upper Galilee.
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Michael S. Rivet





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PostPosted: Tue 16 Feb, 2016 5:51 pm    Post subject: Not impossible         Reply with quote

I'm not prepared to speak as to the origin or age of anything I stumble across in a photograph (here or anywhere else), and I realize that caution and suspicion are excellent policies when in the market for antiquities of any sort. Caveat emptor &cetera. And yet, dismissing it as an outright forgery feels like rushing to judgment.

Some of the details, like the hole in the handle (for securing the warhammer to one's wrist via cord) and what looks like it might be a belt hook (hard to tell through the patina, but the side of the haft shown in close-up presents an edge whereas the other side presents flat--or I could be imagining it; wouldn't be the first time), are uncommon even on good reproductions. A forger would have to really know their stuff and then, for some reason, decide to make an oddball warhammer rather than something more recognizable--and desirable to collectors--such as a sword.

I'm not saying it's not a forgery. It would not be surprising; fakes are common. But if it is, the forger pays enough attention to detail to replicate a peculiar feature or two, but somehow not enough to realize that artifacts from the 15th to 17th century don't have to be thoroughly patinated to pass for the real thing. So I would also not be surprised if it is exactly what it is represented to be.

Just, you know, to take the Devil's side in the matter.



 Attachment: 18.68 KB
normal_16650.jpg
From Hermann Historica, not described as historismus.

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German, 15th 17cm and 20cm.jpg
From Hermann Historica, identified as German, 15th century.

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31591 German 1600 to 1650.jpg
From Hermann Historica, identified as early 17th century; an example of the type of tongue belt hook that I might--might--be seeing on the wide shot of the patinated hammer in question.

 Attachment: 11.55 KB
German 16th 54cm.jpg
From Hermann Historica (I'm assuming based on the background--I can only cram so much information into these file names), with a fancy belt clip and a hole for securing the hammer to the wrist.

 Attachment: 86.2 KB
No idea where this came from, but provides a good view of the hole in the haft. [ Download ]
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Ronald M




Location: vancouver bc canada
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PostPosted: Tue 16 Feb, 2016 8:03 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

so... bec de corbin....= warhammer?
smiley face 123? no? lol yeah well im here cause i like...swords and weapons and stuff obv
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Tyler Jordan





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PostPosted: Tue 16 Feb, 2016 8:16 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ronald M wrote:
so... bec de corbin....= warhammer?


The differences between a bec de corbin and a warhammer are mostly based on interpretation of the size of the pick relative to the hammer.
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Matt Corbin




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PostPosted: Wed 17 Feb, 2016 9:36 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Pretty much what Tyler said. The differences between a warhammer, a bec de corbin and a lucerne hammer are fairly subtle and all kind of blend together at some point.
“This was the age of heroes, some legendary, some historical . . . the misty borderland of history where fact and legend mingle.”
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Wed 17 Feb, 2016 2:04 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The pick IS the hammer. The word "hammer" was used differently at the time compared to today.

What we call a pick or spike was called a "hammer"
What we call a hammer, the flat bludgeoning part, was called a "poll"

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Matt Corbin




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PostPosted: Thu 18 Feb, 2016 4:14 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan Howard wrote:
The pick IS the hammer. The word "hammer" was used differently at the time compared to today.

What we call a pick or spike was called a "hammer"
What we call a hammer, the flat bludgeoning part, was called a "poll"

Thanks for that piece of information Dan. I'd never heard it described that way before and that actually really helps clarify things for me.

“This was the age of heroes, some legendary, some historical . . . the misty borderland of history where fact and legend mingle.”
- R. Ewart Oakeshott
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Fri 19 Feb, 2016 1:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yep. Once you get that straight in your head a lot of other inconsistencies work themselves out. For example, another name for warhammer is "pollhammer" - a hammer with a poll. A "pollaxe" is an axe with a poll; if it doesn't have a poll, then it can't be called a pollaxe. A lot of weapons that are called pollaxes today should really be classed as halberds.
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Sa'ar Nudel




Location: Haifa, Israel
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PostPosted: Sat 20 Feb, 2016 2:18 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan Howard wrote:
The pick IS the hammer. The word "hammer" was used differently at the time compared to today.

What we call a pick or spike was called a "hammer"
What we call a hammer, the flat bludgeoning part, was called a "poll"


Indeed. Interesting enough, in Hebrew a synonym to the word 'hammer' ('patish' פטיש) is מקבת (expressed 'makevet'), from the lingual source נקב = 'to puncture'.

Curator of Beit Ussishkin, regional nature & history museum, Upper Galilee.
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Leo Todeschini
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PostPosted: Sat 20 Feb, 2016 6:08 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The Wiki entries for poll and hammer are interesting

poll
From Middle English pol, polle ("scalp, pate"), probably from or else cognate with Middle Dutch pol, pōle, polle ‎(“top, summit; head”),[1] from Proto-Germanic *pullaz ‎(“round object, head, top”), from Proto-Indo-European *bolno-, *bōwl- ‎(“orb, round object, bubble”), from Proto-Indo-European *bew- ‎(“to blow, swell”). Akin to Scots pow ‎(“head, crown, skalp, skull”), Saterland Frisian pol ‎(“round, full, brimming”), Low German polle ‎(“head, tree-top, bulb”), Danish puld ‎(“crown of a hat”), Swedish dialectal pull ‎(“head”). Meaning "collection of votes" is first recorded 1625, from notion of "counting heads".

Hammer
From Middle English hamer, Old English hamor, from Proto-Germanic *hamaraz (compare West Frisian hammer, Low German Hamer, Dutch hamer, German Hammer, Danish hammer, Swedish hammare). The Germanic *hamaraz "tool with a stone head" derives from a Proto-Indo-European *h₂eḱmoros (compare Sanskrit अश्मरी ‎(aśmarī, “strangury”)), itself a derivation from *h₂éḱmō ‎(“stone”).

For *h₂éḱmō ‎(“stone”), compare Lithuanian akmuõ, Russian камень ‎(kamenʹ), Serbo-Croatian kamēn, Albanian kmesë ‎(“sickle”), Ancient Greek ἄκμων ‎(ákmōn, “meteor rock, anvil”), Avestan [script needed] ‎(asman), Sanskrit अश्मन् ‎(aśman)) (root *h₂eḱ- ‎(“sharp”)).

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Bartek Strojek




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PostPosted: Sat 20 Feb, 2016 11:04 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan Howard wrote:
Yep. Once you get that straight in your head a lot of other inconsistencies work themselves out. For example, another name for warhammer is "pollhammer" - a hammer with a poll. A "pollaxe" is an axe with a poll; if it doesn't have a poll, then it can't be called a pollaxe. A lot of weapons that are called pollaxes today should really be classed as halberds.


It's certainly interesting.

Do you know any details?

As in in what years and how was the meaning changing.

And how was 'ordinary' hammer, used to drive nails and push other objects apart/together named, in say 13th-15th century England?

Since

Quote:
For *h₂éḱmō ‎(“stone”), compare Lithuanian akmuõ, Russian камень ‎(kamenʹ), Serbo-Croatian kamēn, Albanian kmesë ‎(“sickle”), Ancient Greek ἄκμων ‎(ákmōn, “meteor rock, anvil”), Avestan [script needed] ‎(asman), Sanskrit अश्मन् ‎(aśman)) (root *h₂eḱ- ‎(“sharp”)).


As can be seen here, meaning of words changes constantly, and often surprisingly. Happy
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Dan Howard




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PostPosted: Sat 20 Feb, 2016 12:41 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Bartek Strojek wrote:
And how was 'ordinary' hammer, used to drive nails and push other objects apart/together named, in say 13th-15th century England?

They were called "mauls" and "mallets" (mallet means "little maul") from the latin malleus.

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Martin Knight




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PostPosted: Thu 25 Feb, 2016 1:16 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

15th C Horseman's Hammers have a much more robust and compact head (see attached). The one pictured appears to be of a much later style. However, as somone observed, the hammer looks far too weak to be a genuine, practical piece. The fluke is also very slim but might be compared with 17th C Eastern European.
Hope that helps?



 Attachment: 165.18 KB
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Martin
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