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Medieval warfare was a bloody affair characterized by hand to hand combat. The vast majority of medieval weapons were of the simple variety, wielded by commoners pressed into service. Swords, the stereotypical medieval weapon, were expensive and largely reserved for knights and nobility. Common Medieval weapons were:
- Ear Dagger
- Spears or Poleaxes
Common Medieval Weapons
Daggers and knives were the most common weapon of the Middle Ages. These Middle Ages weapons, as always, were good for close range stabbing action. Longer swords had either a single or double blade, used for hacking and slashing. There were also weapons for cleaving, such as battle axes, and war hammers and mauls, which inflicted blunt force trauma. The morning star was another type of club weapon, generally consisting of a spiked head on the end of a short to medium length handle.
Longer Medieval Weapons
Longer weapons included spears and pole arms. These were sharp blades, sometimes quite large, on the end of a long handle, often used in battle against mounted cavalry. Pikes could be up to 25 feet long, but were often unwieldy in actual combat. Pikemen generally carried an additional shorter weapon, such as a sword, for close combat.
Bows and arrows have been around since antiquity. The crossbow was a medieval invention that revolutionized warfare, as was the longbow, which enabled greater striking distance for archers. Longbows were a key to Henry V’s victory at Agincourt in 1415.