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Sam Arwas




Location: Australia
Joined: 02 Dec 2015

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PostPosted: Thu 29 Nov, 2018 7:36 pm    Post subject: Sword types XIIa and XIIIa question         Reply with quote

While reading the myArmoury review for the Albion Baron it discusses the use of these "Great Swords of War" as intended for two-handed use on the battlefield. Using a weapon with two hands presumably means you're not holding a shield.

In this period (late 13th and early 14th centuries) we have early forms of plate defences but maille is still the primary form of armour for a high-status warrior. Therefore I'd think they'd be rather reluctant to go into battle without a shield.

Any chance these swords were for use in specific scenarios where a shield may not be needed? Seems like a strange and pointless Kamikaze tactic otherwise.
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Harry Marinakis




PostPosted: Thu 29 Nov, 2018 10:32 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote


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Stephen Curtin




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PostPosted: Thu 29 Nov, 2018 11:17 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Many if not most of the men who carried these XIIas and XIIIas into battle did in fact still use shields. There are many images where you can see a heavily armoured soldier with his shield hanging from his neck and welding a large sword with both hands. These swords were probably used single handedly from horseback with a shield. Then if you hand to dismount, you slung your shield over your shoulder and fought with both hands on the sword.
Éirinn go Brách
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Sam Arwas




Location: Australia
Joined: 02 Dec 2015

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PostPosted: Fri 30 Nov, 2018 3:06 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Stephen Curtin wrote:
Many if not most of the men who carried these XIIas and XIIIas into battle did in fact still use shields. There are many images where you can see a heavily armoured soldier with his shield hanging from his neck and welding a large sword with both hands. These swords were probably used single handedly from horseback with a shield. Then if you hand to dismount, you slung your shield over your shoulder and fought with both hands on the sword.
That's the thing. On the battlefield you'll be up against all kinds of things that maille might not protect you from. So not holding the shield seems like a significant risk to take for using a sword two-handed
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Stephen Curtin




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PostPosted: Fri 30 Nov, 2018 4:45 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Well if you've already had to dismount, or you've been unhorsed by the enemy, then things have already gone fairly wrong. At this point you're vulnerable no matter whether you have a shield not. You might be faced by enemies on all sides, so a shield slung on your back could protect from unseen blows while you take on what's in front of you with your sword.
Éirinn go Brách
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