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Weapon types and function

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  • nwarnold99
    Hello all, I m a new member with a question perhaps some of you can answer. I m wondering what the function of the different types of weapons are. For example,
    Message 1 of 22 , Dec 24, 2006
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      Hello all, I'm a new member with a question perhaps some of you can
      answer.

      I'm wondering what the function of the different types of weapons are.
      For example, why a pick-type weapon, or a bludgeoning weapon, etc.
      Where they made to defeat armor? Where they made to defeat a specific
      type of armor, or opponent? Here are some examples, if you can point
      me in the right direction I would appreciate it.

      1) "flail" type weapons, or weapons with chains, etc.

      2) "morning star" or holy-water sprinkler weapons, IE club with spikes.

      3) Swords-

      4) crushing weapons, hammer weapons-

      5) pick weapons-

      6) Bills, Halberds-

      7) spears, pikes-

      I'm pretty clear on the basic function of these weapons, but was
      wondering if there are any more hidden functions, or if they were
      designed for a specific enemy, or armor.

      Thanks, and feel free to add anything else you can think of.
    • Javier Bermudez-Prado
      1) flail type weapons, or weapons with chains, etc. Flail weapons are acceleration weapons- that is, they increase the force of the blow by working on a
      Message 2 of 22 , Jan 2, 2007
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        1) "flail" type weapons, or weapons with chains, etc.
        Flail weapons are acceleration weapons- that is, they increase the force of the blow by working on a principle of acceleration. Because they are accelerating at such a great rate, they can do phenomenal amounts of damage with very little weight or effort. The downside is that they also have too much momentum to reverse blows or feint effectively. Fairly useful against all armour because of the force output they could generate, but of limited use in a full-scale battle because of their slow recovery time.






        2) "morning star" or holy-water sprinkler weapons, IE club with spikes.

        Cheap, easy to make, and not very complicated to use... spikes also helped to concentrate force and punch through chain and plate armour






        3) Swords-

        Too many types of swords to lump together- sword have two main functions- cutting and piercing. Cutting swords are great against unarmoured opponents, but could not cut very effectively through well-made chainmaille... the result was a move towards increasingly stiffer forms that could punch through armour with a thrust. Even against chain, mind you, the concussive damage of a good chop with a sword could still crack the bones or split the skin under the armour. When plate armour was popularized to counteract the effects of longswords, axes, maces, etc., many swords became even stiffer, so that they could thrust through plate.. in most cases, however, the sword was kept for fighting lightly armoured opponents such as yeomen and archers, while the knight relied on mass weapons like the mace, warhammer and battleaxe for fighting other armoured men-at-arms.






        4) crushing weapons, hammer weapons-
        Some of the oldest weapons- cheap and dirt-easy to make in their simpelst forms. Evolved from the club. Works just dandy against all forms of armour.




        5) pick weapons-
        Can-openers. will punch through armour, padding and the man underneath with relatively little effort.





        6) Bills, Halberds-



        Can-openers on sticks. Bills are agricultural implements attached to a long haft..... pole-arms have reach, mass and an assortment of spikes/hooks for unhorsing cavalry... pole-arms helped to destroy the hereditary rule of the cavalry in warfare during the hundred years' war.




        7) spears, pikes-

        Cheap (essentially a knife on a stick), easy and pretty elemntary in their use: the pointy end goes in the other man. a hedge of long pikes will deter cavalry evvectively, which is how the Scottish defeated Edward I of England, and how his grandosn and great-grandsons defeated the vast and well-armoured French-German cavalry.




        I'm pretty clear on the basic function of these weapons, but was

        wondering if there are any more hidden functions, or if they were

        designed for a specific enemy, or armor.



        Thanks, and feel free to add anything else you can think of.









        __.






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      • mark shier
        Swords are not designed to penetrate armour, according to the surviving medieval swordsmanship manuals. They are used to find holes and gaps in the armour, and
        Message 3 of 22 , Jan 2, 2007
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          Swords are not designed to penetrate armour, according to the
          surviving medieval swordsmanship manuals. They are used to find holes
          and gaps in the armour, and as pry bars to throw your opponent or break
          arms.
          mark shier
        • Javier Bermudez-Prado
          As I said, cutting blades were useless for cutting through chain except as concussive weapons, however, a thrusting sword could be used against chain quite
          Message 4 of 22 , Jan 2, 2007
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            As I said, cutting blades were useless for cutting through chain except as concussive weapons, however, a thrusting sword could be used against chain quite effectively, as well as against the chain-gusset portions of plate armour (armpit, inside of elbow, etc.). Also, some specialized forms of sword (which as the estoc) were quite specifically designed to thrust clean through plate- and they could do so easily (I've seen them in action against plated targets).

            As mentioned in my first post, however, the prevalence of plate among the upper classes did indeed lead to an increased popularity of pole-arms and mass weapons in the later middle ages, and the bulk of swords remained in use against the lightly armoured common soldiers, and as symbols of status.

            ----- Original Message ----
            From: mark shier <mark@...>
            To: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Tuesday, January 2, 2007 8:04:45 PM
            Subject: Re: [AncientWeapons] Weapon types and function

            Swords are not designed to penetrate armour, according to the
            surviving medieval swordsmanship manuals. They are used to find holes
            and gaps in the armour, and as pry bars to throw your opponent or break
            arms.
            mark shier



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          • mark shier
            I d like to see a sword thrust through plate, or even mail (rivetted). Do you have any pictures? The German manuals give some techniques for sword against
            Message 5 of 22 , Jan 2, 2007
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              I'd like to see a sword thrust through plate, or even mail
              (rivetted). Do you have any pictures? The German manuals give some
              techniques for sword against mail, but they don't expect the sword to
              penetrate. The manual I'm most familiar with (Fiore, circa 1410) shows
              no techniques for pentrating armour, just techiniques for avoiding
              armour.
              mark shier
            • Matthew Amt
              I agree with Mr. Shier. Armor of any period was VERY resistant to the weapons used. Yes, maces, picks, and polearms were much more likely to penetrate armor,
              Message 6 of 22 , Jan 3, 2007
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                I agree with Mr. Shier. Armor of any period was
                VERY resistant to the weapons used. Yes, maces,
                picks, and polearms were much more likely to penetrate
                armor, but it was by no means easy to do so, according
                to the accounts of the folks who were there. And yes,
                it is certainly possible to wound a man severly
                without actually penetrating his armor, particularly
                with mail. But even mail has proven much more
                resistant to points and thrusts than we once thought.
                Swords were generally not designed to go through
                armor, but that's all right because the vast majority
                of the men on an ancient or medieval battlefield were
                not heavily armored, if at all. Plenty of good
                targets!

                There are LOTS of discussions on this sort of topic
                on the Armour Archive, Sword Forum, and other boards.

                http://forums.swordforum.com/showthread.php?t=41041

                http://www.armourarchive.org/

                Valete,

                Matthew
                ----------------

                Posted by: "mark shier"
                Tue Jan 2, 2007 8:41 pm (PST)

                I'd like to see a sword thrust through plate, or even
                mail
                (rivetted). Do you have any pictures? The German
                manuals give some
                techniques for sword against mail, but they don't
                expect the sword to
                penetrate. The manual I'm most familiar with (Fiore,
                circa 1410) shows
                no techniques for pentrating armour, just techiniques
                for avoiding
                armour.
                mark shier

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              • Lars Finsen
                ... Armour and ways to pierce is has been part of the arms race in all times it seems. The Celts were very successful with their cherished long swords until
                Message 7 of 22 , Jan 3, 2007
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                  Den 3. jan. 2007 kl. 13.54 skrev Matthew Amt:

                  > I agree with Mr. Shier. Armor of any period was
                  > VERY resistant to the weapons used.

                  Armour and ways to pierce is has been part of the arms race in all
                  times it seems. The Celts were very successful with their cherished
                  long swords until the Romans developed shoulder plates. Then the
                  Romans were successful until the Germanic peoples developed narrow,
                  pointed axes. These were often used against the head, so the natural
                  next move was steel helmets I suppose. But it seems we didn't come to
                  that until much later. Maybe it's because archery became more
                  important than close combat, I don't know.

                  LEF
                • P. Dominus Antonius
                  The Romans had steel helmets. Unfortunately they didn t have kevlar. -- ... Tony Dah m Si vis pacem, para bellum - Vegetius Mahometismus religio pacis, nex
                  Message 8 of 22 , Jan 3, 2007
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                    The Romans had steel helmets. Unfortunately they didn't have kevlar.

                    --
                    >|P. Dominus Antonius|<
                    Tony Dah m

                    Si vis pacem, para bellum - Vegetius
                    Mahometismus religio pacis, nex omnibus dissidentibus.


                    On 1/3/07, Lars Finsen <lars.finsen@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Armour and ways to pierce is has been part of the arms race in all
                    > times it seems. The Celts were very successful with their cherished
                    > long swords until the Romans developed shoulder plates. Then the
                    > Romans were successful until the Germanic peoples developed narrow,
                    > pointed axes. These were often used against the head, so the natural
                    > next move was steel helmets I suppose. But it seems we didn't come to
                    > that until much later. Maybe it's because archery became more
                    > important than close combat, I don't know.
                    >
                    > LEF
                    >


                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Antonio Frutuoso de Melo
                    From observation of museum armour pieces it seems that the later are stronger than the earlier, and this seems to coincide with the introduction of the powder
                    Message 9 of 22 , Jan 3, 2007
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                      From observation of museum armour pieces it seems that the later are
                      stronger than the earlier, and this seems to coincide with the introduction
                      of the powder guns, generalised in Europe by the end of the 14th century.
                      Evidently the use of powder in China is much older, but not as bullets
                      suitable for causing individual injury to soldiers .- it was apparently used
                      to something closer to rockets and fire launchers since the Han Dynasty.

                      Any views on this matter?

                      Antonio



                      -----Original Message-----
                      From: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com [mailto:AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com]
                      On Behalf Of P. Dominus Antonius
                      Sent: quarta-feira, 3 de Janeiro de 2007 16:35
                      To: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: Re: [AncientWeapons] Re: Weapon types and function



                      The Romans had steel helmets. Unfortunately they didn't have kevlar.

                      --
                      >|P. Dominus Antonius|<
                      Tony Dah m

                      Si vis pacem, para bellum - Vegetius
                      Mahometismus religio pacis, nex omnibus dissidentibus.

                      On 1/3/07, Lars Finsen <HYPERLINK
                      "mailto:lars.finsen%40ortygia.no"lars.finsen@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > Armour and ways to pierce is has been part of the arms race in all
                      > times it seems. The Celts were very successful with their cherished
                      > long swords until the Romans developed shoulder plates. Then the
                      > Romans were successful until the Germanic peoples developed narrow,
                      > pointed axes. These were often used against the head, so the natural
                      > next move was steel helmets I suppose. But it seems we didn't come to
                      > that until much later. Maybe it's because archery became more
                      > important than close combat, I don't know.
                      >
                      > LEF
                      >

                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]




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                    • Matthew Amt
                      Posted by: Lars Finsen Armour and ways to pierce is has been part of the arms race in all times it seems. The Celts were very successful with their
                      Message 10 of 22 , Jan 4, 2007
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                        Posted by: "Lars Finsen"

                        "Armour and ways to pierce is has been part of the
                        arms race in all
                        times it seems. The Celts were very successful with
                        their cherished
                        long swords until the Romans developed shoulder
                        plates."

                        Except that those shoulder plates apparently did
                        not come into use until AFTER the conquest of Gaul.
                        Roman mailshirts--modeled after Gallic
                        Greek-influenced styles--were perfectly adequate for
                        Caesar's men and those before. Spears were more
                        common than swords, anyway. And most Gauls were not
                        armored--their weapons were mostly used against each
                        other, not against Romans. Finally, the SHIELD was
                        the primary defense, not the armor. We can't even
                        prove that all legionaries were armored! Weapon and
                        armor evolution are NOT as cut-and-dried as one might
                        think.

                        "Then the
                        Romans were successful until the Germanic peoples
                        developed narrow,
                        pointed axes. These were often used against the head,
                        so the natural
                        next move was steel helmets I suppose."

                        Narrow, pointed axes? Never heard of those! Do
                        you have any pictures? Mind you, the late Empire is
                        not my strong era, but none of the experts have ever
                        mentioned these, that I know of. If they did exist,
                        they were used against whatever part of the body could
                        be hit, like any other weapon. The general rule, of
                        course, was to strike at UNarmored spots, not at the
                        most heavily defended areas, such as the head, no
                        matter what weapon was being used.

                        "But it seems we didn't come to
                        that until much later. Maybe it's because archery
                        became more
                        important than close combat,"

                        Archery seems to have had a lot less influence on
                        armor development than we used to think, too. Look
                        around on the Sword Forum, MyArmoury.com, and the
                        Armour Archive for MANY long discussions on the
                        matter.

                        Valete,

                        Matthew

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                      • Lars Finsen
                        ... Well, pointed wasn t the right word of course. My post apparently wasn t very well founded. But here I was thinking of Viking axes that often have rather
                        Message 11 of 22 , Jan 4, 2007
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                          Den 4. jan. 2007 kl. 18.27 skrev Matthew Amt:
                          > Narrow, pointed axes? Never heard of those! Do
                          > you have any pictures?

                          Well, pointed wasn't the right word of course. My post apparently
                          wasn't very well founded. But here I was thinking of Viking axes that
                          often have rather small blades and sometimes rather narrow, but not
                          pointed. I have heard that similar ones were used further south in
                          earlier times as well, and that they were often used against the
                          head. But possibly not if the victims were wearing steel helmets...

                          LEF
                        • Foster Stanback
                          Antonio: You are correct. I highly recommend the book Gunpowder by Jack Kelly. It reads like a movie and provides an excellent historical overview of the
                          Message 12 of 22 , Jan 4, 2007
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                            Antonio:

                            You are correct. I highly recommend the book Gunpowder by Jack Kelly. It reads like a movie and provides an excellent historical overview of the subject. Here is a link to the book on Amazon.com.


                            http://www.amazon.com/Gunpowder-Alchemy-Bombards-Pyrotechnics-Explosive/dp/0465037186/sr=1-1/qid=1167961879/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/104-0399082-9382365?ie=UTF8&s=books

                            Regards,
                            Foster Stanback

                            Antonio Frutuoso de Melo <afrumelo@...> wrote:
                            From observation of museum armour pieces it seems that the later are
                            stronger than the earlier, and this seems to coincide with the introduction
                            of the powder guns, generalised in Europe by the end of the 14th century.
                            Evidently the use of powder in China is much older, but not as bullets
                            suitable for causing individual injury to soldiers .- it was apparently used
                            to something closer to rockets and fire launchers since the Han Dynasty.

                            Any views on this matter?

                            Antonio



                            -----Original Message-----
                            From: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com [mailto:AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com]
                            On Behalf Of P. Dominus Antonius
                            Sent: quarta-feira, 3 de Janeiro de 2007 16:35
                            To: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                            Subject: Re: [AncientWeapons] Re: Weapon types and function



                            The Romans had steel helmets. Unfortunately they didn't have kevlar.

                            --
                            >|P. Dominus Antonius|<
                            Tony Dah m

                            Si vis pacem, para bellum - Vegetius
                            Mahometismus religio pacis, nex omnibus dissidentibus.

                            On 1/3/07, Lars Finsen "mailto:lars.finsen%40ortygia.no"lars.finsen@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > Armour and ways to pierce is has been part of the arms race in all
                            > times it seems. The Celts were very successful with their cherished
                            > long swords until the Romans developed shoulder plates. Then the
                            > Romans were successful until the Germanic peoples developed narrow,
                            > pointed axes. These were often used against the head, so the natural
                            > next move was steel helmets I suppose. But it seems we didn't come to
                            > that until much later. Maybe it's because archery became more
                            > important than close combat, I don't know.
                            >
                            > LEF
                            >

                            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]




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                          • Derek
                            ... that ... not ... Hello It looks like you were thinking of bearded axes.... Or maybe it was a vague memory about the Roman/Dacian wars just before and just
                            Message 13 of 22 , Jan 5, 2007
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                              --- In AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com, Lars Finsen <lars.finsen@...>
                              wrote:
                              >
                              >
                              > Den 4. jan. 2007 kl. 18.27 skrev Matthew Amt:
                              > > Narrow, pointed axes? Never heard of those! Do
                              > > you have any pictures?
                              >
                              > Well, pointed wasn't the right word of course. My post apparently
                              > wasn't very well founded. But here I was thinking of Viking axes
                              that
                              > often have rather small blades and sometimes rather narrow, but
                              not
                              > pointed. I have heard that similar ones were used further south in
                              > earlier times as well, and that they were often used against the
                              > head. But possibly not if the victims were wearing steel helmets...
                              >
                              > LEF
                              >
                              Hello
                              It looks like you were thinking of bearded axes....
                              Or maybe it was a vague memory about the Roman/Dacian wars just
                              before and just after 100AD. The Dacians used a short pole weapon
                              with a nasty hooked blade that was just great at cleaving Roman
                              helmets and shields. This resulted in the Romans adding a cross brace
                              to the tops of their helmets and adopting arm (manica) and leg armour
                              (greaves). As far as I've read, this is the only know time that the
                              Romans made such far ranging modifications during a war. These are
                              shown on Trajans column and in a couple of other places. There are no
                              known finds of manica, but there are reinforced helmets and greaves.

                              Derek
                              Derek
                            • Derek
                              ... shows ... Hello I have seen a blunted sword break through butted mail. There have been tests using the English armies facilities that have tested replica
                              Message 14 of 22 , Jan 5, 2007
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                                --- In AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com, "mark shier" <mark@...> wrote:
                                >
                                > I'd like to see a sword thrust through plate, or even mail
                                > (rivetted). Do you have any pictures? The German manuals give some
                                > techniques for sword against mail, but they don't expect the sword to
                                > penetrate. The manual I'm most familiar with (Fiore, circa 1410)
                                shows
                                > no techniques for pentrating armour, just techiniques for avoiding
                                > armour.
                                > mark shier
                                >
                                Hello
                                I have seen a blunted sword break through butted mail. There have been
                                tests using the English armies facilities that have tested replica
                                Viking rivetted mail and shields. The test was for spears, not swords,
                                but the spear penetrated with ease. It was the addition of a gambeson
                                in the tests that managed to make the spear thrust non fatal. It has
                                been my understanding that maille was for protection against cuts, not
                                thrusts. Ewart Oakshott states in a couple of his books that certain
                                swords had stiffened blades to allow thrusting through plate. Plate was
                                not always good and had thin spots where a thrust could penitrate,
                                though it's not something that I'd like to try while the guy was still
                                fighting, i think, from experience, i'd wait until I'd used concusive
                                force to break a few of his bones and he's flat out on the ground
                                before I'd try to bust his breastplate with a thrust.

                                Derek
                              • Javier Bermudez-Prado
                                Estocs can punch through plate rather nicely- I don t have pics, nor am I likely to have access to an Estoc again any time soon. The one difficulty was in
                                Message 15 of 22 , Jan 6, 2007
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                                  Estocs can punch through plate rather nicely- I don't have pics, nor am I likely to have access to an Estoc again any time soon. The one difficulty was in landing a solid blow against the glancing surfaces of the armour, but when it landed square, the blade easily punctured the plate. This was mild-steel plate, mind you, and not tempered, so obviously it would take more to do that kind of work on a higher-end piece of armour, but the fact remains that there WERE swords designed to penetrate rather than evade armour.

                                  As for swords puncturing chain: a solid thrust with a later period cut-and-thrust will drive the good, hardened steel tip through the softer iron links, even riveted. Yes, it takes force to do this, but not so much as to be uncommon in battle. The simple fact here being that the sword is tempered steel against raw iron for the chain links.

                                  You are correct that the best way to hurt someone is to avoid their armour altogether, but there's a reason many European blades began to get stiffer as steels got better: to punch through their target.

                                  As I said, all I can base this on is my own experience test-cutting.

                                  ----- Original Message ----
                                  From: Derek <scaith@...>
                                  To: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                                  Sent: Friday, January 5, 2007 5:38:25 PM
                                  Subject: [AncientWeapons] Re: Weapon types and function













                                  --- In AncientWeapons@ yahoogroups. com, "mark shier" <mark@...> wrote:

                                  >

                                  > I'd like to see a sword thrust through plate, or even mail

                                  > (rivetted). Do you have any pictures? The German manuals give some

                                  > techniques for sword against mail, but they don't expect the sword to

                                  > penetrate. The manual I'm most familiar with (Fiore, circa 1410)

                                  shows

                                  > no techniques for pentrating armour, just techiniques for avoiding

                                  > armour.

                                  > mark shier

                                  >

                                  Hello

                                  I have seen a blunted sword break through butted mail. There have been

                                  tests using the English armies facilities that have tested replica

                                  Viking rivetted mail and shields. The test was for spears, not swords,

                                  but the spear penetrated with ease. It was the addition of a gambeson

                                  in the tests that managed to make the spear thrust non fatal. It has

                                  been my understanding that maille was for protection against cuts, not

                                  thrusts. Ewart Oakshott states in a couple of his books that certain

                                  swords had stiffened blades to allow thrusting through plate. Plate was

                                  not always good and had thin spots where a thrust could penitrate,

                                  though it's not something that I'd like to try while the guy was still

                                  fighting, i think, from experience, i'd wait until I'd used concusive

                                  force to break a few of his bones and he's flat out on the ground

                                  before I'd try to bust his breastplate with a thrust.



                                  Derek














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                                • Matthew Amt
                                  Posted by: Derek scaith@westnet.com.au The Dacians used a short pole weapon with a nasty hooked blade that was just great at cleaving Roman helmets and
                                  Message 16 of 22 , Jan 7, 2007
                                  • 0 Attachment
                                    Posted by: "Derek"
                                    scaith@...


                                    "The Dacians used a short pole weapon
                                    with a nasty hooked blade that was just great at
                                    cleaving Roman
                                    helmets and shields. This resulted in the Romans
                                    adding a cross brace
                                    to the tops of their helmets and adopting arm (manica)
                                    and leg armour
                                    (greaves)."

                                    Yes, we *think* these additions were made as a
                                    response to the falx. I've seen a repro in
                                    action--very scary weapon!

                                    http://www.larp.com/legioxx/falxcut1.jpg

                                    "These are
                                    shown on Trajans column and in a couple of other
                                    places. There are no
                                    known finds of manica, but there are reinforced
                                    helmets and greaves."

                                    Actually several manicae have been found, at
                                    Newstead and Carlisle in England, and at Leon in
                                    Spain. Reinforced helmets have turned up in Israel and
                                    a couple other places, and greaves from a number of
                                    sites. Curiously, these are all places where the falx
                                    was not used! So it seems that after their
                                    introduction they were simply seen as good things to
                                    have in any case (though most likely only for a few of
                                    the men, such as front-rankers), OR it could be that
                                    they were coming into use even before the falx became
                                    an issue. Personally, I lean towards the falx being a
                                    factor!


                                    There isn't much point in bringing up tests of
                                    weapons against butted mail or mild sheet steel, since
                                    they really don't bear much resemblance to armor.
                                    Other recent tests have used riveted mail, but it is
                                    quite possible that the mail still wasn't close enough
                                    to the real thing to give an accurate result. There
                                    is a lot of complex physics involved, and very subtle
                                    differences in the metal, ring size, wire thickness,
                                    and riveting can lead to very different results. I
                                    very much doubt that any spear could penetrate mail
                                    "with ease"--it takes quite a bit of work! The vast
                                    majority of blows on a battlefield were not full-force
                                    and perfectly aimed, and they didn't have to be
                                    because even a very wimpy glancing hit on clothing or
                                    flesh could slice a man wide open. COULD a spear go
                                    through mail? Sure! But I do NOT think it was
                                    "common", nor was it easy. Why would mail be used
                                    continuously for hundreds of years if it were only
                                    designed to defend against cuts? The SPEAR was the
                                    the most common weapon from Neolithic times straight
                                    through the early middle ages!

                                    Anyway, this whole topic has been beaten to death a
                                    hundred times, so if anyone here is convinced that
                                    whatever weapon of preference has no trouble going
                                    through the armor that the ancients thought was very
                                    effective, there's not much point in me trying to
                                    fight it all again.

                                    Valete,

                                    Matthew

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                                  • Paul Bardunias
                                    ... One thing to remember when discussing the type of weapons used is what they evolved out of is as important as thier function. Many a man was killed in
                                    Message 17 of 22 , Jan 9, 2007
                                    • 0 Attachment
                                      --- In AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com, "nwarnold99" <nwarnold99@...>
                                      wrote:
                                      >
                                      One thing to remember when discussing the type of weapons used is what
                                      they evolved out of is as important as thier function. Many a man was
                                      killed in battle from a scythe blade reworked into a polearm, an
                                      pruning bill, or an agricultural flail with some nails hammered into
                                      in. Hunting spears, javelins and bows, foresters hatchets, or all
                                      purpose knives often outnumbered purpose built swords on the
                                      battlefield.

                                      Paul
                                    • nwarnold99
                                      Excellent help, and just what I was looking for. Thank you to the list. As an aside, I watched a history channel show about European contact with the New
                                      Message 18 of 22 , Jan 20, 2007
                                      • 0 Attachment
                                        Excellent help, and just what I was looking for. Thank you to the list.

                                        As an aside, I watched a history channel show about European contact
                                        with the "New World". They showed the different weapons, tactics, etc
                                        that armies of the old and new world utilized during their many
                                        conflicts.

                                        In one example they showed a chert-tipped arrow being fired at a
                                        chainmail shirt. I was surprised to see the arrow pierce right through
                                        into the "dummy" underneath the chainmail.

                                        I also enjoyed the Falx picture, that looks devestating, and as I've
                                        read a little about the Thracian/Roman conflicts it was nice to see a
                                        picture of the weapon.

                                        Thanks again!
                                      • Kenneth Blair
                                        I examine chert artifacts and the test sounds like it was flawed somehow. Chert is easily chipped, hence all the tools that can be shaped by knapping. The
                                        Message 19 of 22 , Jan 21, 2007
                                        • 0 Attachment
                                          I examine chert artifacts and the test sounds like it was flawed
                                          somehow. Chert is easily chipped, hence all the tools that can be shaped
                                          by knapping.
                                          The armour of the Spaniards is what allowed them to cut through masses
                                          of warriors of various pre-Colombian peoples with very few casualties
                                          from missile fire or combat. Horse and steel weapons, and gun powder, of
                                          course meant that a few hundred adventurers could topple kingdoms.

                                          Think about it.
                                          If a chert point pierced armour in ways that iron and steel points
                                          simply didn't in most cases then how different would history be?
                                          Tap a piece of chert with a rock (hammerstone), it will flake. This is
                                          fine in 'new world' light armoured combat or hunting but against steel
                                          or iron armour I don't expect chert would be so flash...otherwise why is
                                          it abandoned for bronze or iron around the world?
                                          The 'chain mail' must have been made of some pretty light gauge wire to
                                          pop apart under such an object.
                                          If they got a real armourer with some skill and asked for a suit and
                                          backing material then it should stop it. Buying a segment of chainmail
                                          off e-bay would not suffice.
                                          Such tests on TV are often dodgy. The so-called 'plate armour' is a flat
                                          thin sheet of metal from a barn yard up against a hay bail which then is
                                          cut through by arrows.
                                          When formed & shaped plate is used, more correctly, the arrows shatter,
                                          buckle and deflect under test conditions.
                                          Another experiment with quality chain with a good backing material and
                                          it would stop a chert point every time, I would bet.
                                          With chain the ability to stop steel/iron arrows when the proper backing
                                          material is used seems fairly clear. It can stop metal arrows in tests
                                          (but cuts through when backing material is removed in the same tests).
                                          Saracens for example were annoyed to see crusading nights advancing
                                          along the coast walking with half a dozen arrows sticking out of them.
                                          Arrows did pierce chain on occasion, but it seems it was more effective
                                          than it is given credit for.
                                          A sheet of 'chain' on a dummy does not mean such crude chert arrows
                                          pierced Spanish armour historically.

                                          Where are references to Spaniards being shot down by native bowmen to
                                          justify such a test anyway?.

                                          ________________________________

                                          From: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                                          [mailto:AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of nwarnold99
                                          Sent: Saturday, 20 January 2007 10:35 p.m.
                                          To: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                                          Subject: [AncientWeapons] Re: Weapon types and function



                                          Excellent help, and just what I was looking for. Thank you to the list.

                                          As an aside, I watched a history channel show about European contact
                                          with the "New World". They showed the different weapons, tactics, etc
                                          that armies of the old and new world utilized during their many
                                          conflicts.

                                          In one example they showed a chert-tipped arrow being fired at a
                                          chainmail shirt. I was surprised to see the arrow pierce right through
                                          into the "dummy" underneath the chainmail.

                                          I also enjoyed the Falx picture, that looks devestating, and as I've
                                          read a little about the Thracian/Roman conflicts it was nice to see a
                                          picture of the weapon.

                                          Thanks again!





                                          This communication, including any attachments, is confidential. If you are not the intended recipient, you should not read it - please contact me immediately, destroy it, and do not copy or use any part of this communication or disclose anything about it. Thank you. Please note that this communication does not designate an information system for the purposes of the Electronic Transactions Act 2002.


                                          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                        • nwarnold99
                                          Well, in reallity the Spaniards discarded most of their chain armor for the padded armor that the natives wore. It was both effective against arrows, and
                                          Message 20 of 22 , Jan 23, 2007
                                          • 0 Attachment
                                            Well, in reallity the Spaniards discarded most of their chain armor
                                            for the padded armor that the natives wore. It was both effective
                                            against arrows, and lighter and easier to care for than the
                                            chainmail.

                                            Bernal Diaz recorded in his book, "La verdadera historia de la
                                            conquista de Nueva Espana" that after some battles the conquistadors
                                            appeared to be pin cushioned with many arrows sticking out of their
                                            padded armor. He also relates that the Spaniards were much more
                                            warry of native slingers as the stones could stun a man, potentially
                                            disabling him and allowing him to be killed or captured.

                                            As far as the conquest of the new world? It wasn't a couple of
                                            hundred soldiers. I would say it was much more a case of audacious
                                            Spanish tactics, Toledo steel, a professional army with veteran
                                            soldiers (Italian wars?), tens of thousands of native allies
                                            (Tlaxcalans/Tarascans), and most of all... European diseases.
                                            Remember la noche triste?

                                            I studied anthropology, graduated, and worked for several years in
                                            the cultural resource management world as a field archaeologist. I
                                            too have studied chert projectile points of various sizes. Flint
                                            knapping by striking a piece of chert with a hammerstone is much
                                            different than a chert projectile point striking and breaking a few
                                            rings of a chain mail coat. There are different forces at work.

                                            Are chert arrows effective against heavy european armor? Not likely.
                                            Can a heavy arrow-head fired from close range snap armored rings?
                                            Probably. The TV armor was probably flimsier than original armor
                                            worn for battlefield protection. Does it invalidate what was shown?
                                            No.

                                            Why didn't the America's abandon their rock weapons for metal ones?
                                            That's a pretty complicated question, but obviously the "arms race"
                                            of Europe didn't apply to the Native Americans in quite the same
                                            way. At the same time, obsidian is one of the sharpest materials on
                                            earth. It's used in eye surgery. On a side note, the Incans did use
                                            bronze weapons, as well as lithic weapons.

                                            As to referrences about Spaniards being shot down by native arrows.
                                            Read the above Historia. In 1520 the Spaniards were defeated
                                            during "la noche triste", when they were attacked and retreated from
                                            the Aztecs capital. Many Spaniards were killed, some by arrows. In
                                            1521 the Spaniards, numbering around 600 with between 75,000-90,000
                                            native allies, were defeated in open combat at the battle of
                                            Tlacopan. Finally, after a very long siege, and small pox raging
                                            rampant through the Aztec capital, Cortez captured and defeated the
                                            Aztecs.

                                            And to sum it up, here is a quote from Diaz' Historia about native
                                            missles:

                                            "the attack on Ordas began, and they poured in such incessant
                                            discharges of missile weapons, that they soon wounded above forty-
                                            six of our men, of whom twelve afterwards died."

                                            And again: "In the midst of all this, the stones and darts which
                                            were launched upon us from the terraces of the house tops did us
                                            astonishing injury."

                                            and again: "The arrows of the Mexicans wounded many of our horses,
                                            notwithstanding that they wore defensive armour"

                                            yet again: "Others of the enemy from the corridors, or within the
                                            railings and concavities of the temple, assailed us on every
                                            side with arrows and other missiles, so that we were unable even to
                                            maintain the ground we had gained. We were constrained therefore to
                                            retreat, every man of us being wounded, and forty-six of our number
                                            slain."

                                            get the idea? "while others, by continual flights of arrows from the
                                            houses, or with long lances from the canoes on each side, killed and
                                            wounded the men and horses"

                                            Flimsy chainmail or not on TV, native arrows did damage.


                                            --- In AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com, "Kenneth Blair"
                                            <Kenneth.Blair@...> wrote:
                                            >
                                            > I examine chert artifacts and the test sounds like it was flawed
                                            > somehow. Chert is easily chipped, hence all the tools that can be
                                            shaped
                                            > by knapping.
                                            > The armour of the Spaniards is what allowed them to cut through
                                            masses
                                            > of warriors of various pre-Colombian peoples with very few
                                            casualties
                                            > from missile fire or combat. Horse and steel weapons, and gun
                                            powder, of
                                            > course meant that a few hundred adventurers could topple kingdoms.
                                            >
                                            > Think about it.
                                            > If a chert point pierced armour in ways that iron and steel points
                                            > simply didn't in most cases then how different would history be?
                                            > Tap a piece of chert with a rock (hammerstone), it will flake.
                                            This is
                                            > fine in 'new world' light armoured combat or hunting but against
                                            steel
                                            > or iron armour I don't expect chert would be so flash...otherwise
                                            why is
                                            > it abandoned for bronze or iron around the world?
                                            > The 'chain mail' must have been made of some pretty light gauge
                                            wire to
                                            > pop apart under such an object.
                                            > If they got a real armourer with some skill and asked for a suit
                                            and
                                            > backing material then it should stop it. Buying a segment of
                                            chainmail
                                            > off e-bay would not suffice.
                                            > Such tests on TV are often dodgy. The so-called 'plate armour' is
                                            a flat
                                            > thin sheet of metal from a barn yard up against a hay bail which
                                            then is
                                            > cut through by arrows.
                                            > When formed & shaped plate is used, more correctly, the arrows
                                            shatter,
                                            > buckle and deflect under test conditions.
                                            > Another experiment with quality chain with a good backing material
                                            and
                                            > it would stop a chert point every time, I would bet.
                                            > With chain the ability to stop steel/iron arrows when the proper
                                            backing
                                            > material is used seems fairly clear. It can stop metal arrows in
                                            tests
                                            > (but cuts through when backing material is removed in the same
                                            tests).
                                            > Saracens for example were annoyed to see crusading nights advancing
                                            > along the coast walking with half a dozen arrows sticking out of
                                            them.
                                            > Arrows did pierce chain on occasion, but it seems it was more
                                            effective
                                            > than it is given credit for.
                                            > A sheet of 'chain' on a dummy does not mean such crude chert arrows
                                            > pierced Spanish armour historically.
                                            >
                                            > Where are references to Spaniards being shot down by native bowmen
                                            to
                                            > justify such a test anyway?.
                                            >
                                            > ________________________________
                                            >
                                            > From: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                                            > [mailto:AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of nwarnold99
                                            > Sent: Saturday, 20 January 2007 10:35 p.m.
                                            > To: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                                            > Subject: [AncientWeapons] Re: Weapon types and function
                                            >
                                            >
                                            >
                                            > Excellent help, and just what I was looking for. Thank you to the
                                            list.
                                            >
                                            > As an aside, I watched a history channel show about European
                                            contact
                                            > with the "New World". They showed the different weapons, tactics,
                                            etc
                                            > that armies of the old and new world utilized during their many
                                            > conflicts.
                                            >
                                            > In one example they showed a chert-tipped arrow being fired at a
                                            > chainmail shirt. I was surprised to see the arrow pierce right
                                            through
                                            > into the "dummy" underneath the chainmail.
                                            >
                                            > I also enjoyed the Falx picture, that looks devestating, and as
                                            I've
                                            > read a little about the Thracian/Roman conflicts it was nice to
                                            see a
                                            > picture of the weapon.
                                            >
                                            > Thanks again!
                                            >
                                            >
                                            >
                                            >
                                            >
                                            > This communication, including any attachments, is confidential. If
                                            you are not the intended recipient, you should not read it - please
                                            contact me immediately, destroy it, and do not copy or use any part
                                            of this communication or disclose anything about it. Thank you.
                                            Please note that this communication does not designate an
                                            information system for the purposes of the Electronic Transactions
                                            Act 2002.
                                            >
                                            >
                                            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                            >
                                          • Kenneth Blair
                                            A fascinating and detailed reply but my comments that seem to have irritated you, if you care to check, were not that the New World was conquered by a
                                            Message 21 of 22 , Jan 23, 2007
                                            • 0 Attachment
                                              A fascinating and detailed reply but my comments that seem to have
                                              irritated you, if you care to check, were not that the ''New World'' was
                                              conquered by a ''few hundred'', but that kingdoms were toppled by a few
                                              hundred adventurers. It is still below for your reference, so correcting
                                              me is a strawman argument.
                                              If you are fully aware of the histories as you have shown to be then the
                                              small parties that advanced on individual civilisations and bought them
                                              down should not be contentious. I thought I mentioned Spanish steel
                                              myself. Native auxiallaries and disease are also known to me but I am
                                              not trying to write a comphrehensive history but instead suggest that
                                              fairly small groups saw such endeavours from start to finish.


                                              My other point was that if the armour was of artisan quality and
                                              properly backed (which BTW is also a padding material and hence the
                                              arrows being stopped in combination) then the shooting of dummies with
                                              just chain on them is not proof that real chain could be pierced. You
                                              seem to accept this but still think the test is valid.
                                              Well, if Spanish wore chain mail armour without padding, which they
                                              perhaps bought of e-bay, then it may be.

                                              The other point I made was that people didn't use chert as a chain
                                              busting weapon when metal was availible since metal is a superior
                                              material in the progression of tools. Iron arrows still seem to not
                                              always pierce chain in the way a TV test might suggest.
                                              This again is not to say that I asked 'why didn't the natives then
                                              abandon rock for metal' but that metal projectiles are superior in
                                              hardness and toughness to chert, whatever "different forces" are at
                                              work, and that these can be stopped by chain & padding when tests are
                                              done properly. The use of bronze for arrows would be rather hard to
                                              explain if flint knapping instead of mining and casting of expensive
                                              alloys produced a point of such durability.

                                              If you think the test is somehow still valid rather than entertaining
                                              then the last point I will add is that in the historical accounts it did
                                              not say anything to suggest the injuries are a result of arrows cutting
                                              right through a chain mail armoured location.
                                              By your own opening statement it seems very little chain was worn
                                              anyway.
                                              Just like at the battle of Carrhae if the literal passages are read
                                              there are no references to arrows cutting through metal body armour but
                                              people take it as an implication. There are lighter armours worn & there
                                              are unarmoured locations which can result in fatal wounds.
                                              I did not say Spaniards didn't die or were never defeated but that can
                                              we assume that chainmail would be pierced by chert arrows from such
                                              historical descriptions?.
                                              You can take whatever you like from the History Channel or whatever it
                                              was, but I still have doubts about the test, the very low toughness of
                                              chert (fact) and whatever relevancy this has if a variety of missile
                                              weapons were used. The horse barding being pierced was the only
                                              reference to armour piercing.
                                              Stones, darts, slings, wounds, & mortally wounded Spaniards, barded
                                              horse pierced, pinned down by missile fire.
                                              Your conclusion; "Native arrows did damage"
                                              .....Yes, that is hardly the point though.
                                              It is dramatic and I did enjoy the accounts but it hardly mentions a
                                              Spaniard being cut through while wearing chain mail.

                                              I expect this is the beginning of the same general circular argument on
                                              arrows and armour that was mentioned several posts back & repeats on
                                              several forums.
                                              Whether arrows will cut through metal armour and slay people is down to
                                              the individuals opinion.
                                              When chert is substituted for an iron bodkin then I will tend to lower
                                              the chances of success, rather than by implication of this test assume
                                              it was effective in this way.




                                              ________________________________

                                              From: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                                              [mailto:AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of nwarnold99
                                              Sent: Tuesday, 23 January 2007 10:22 p.m.
                                              To: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                                              Subject: [AncientWeapons] Re: Weapon types and function



                                              Well, in reallity the Spaniards discarded most of their chain armor
                                              for the padded armor that the natives wore. It was both effective
                                              against arrows, and lighter and easier to care for than the
                                              chainmail.

                                              Bernal Diaz recorded in his book, "La verdadera historia de la
                                              conquista de Nueva Espana" that after some battles the conquistadors
                                              appeared to be pin cushioned with many arrows sticking out of their
                                              padded armor. He also relates that the Spaniards were much more
                                              warry of native slingers as the stones could stun a man, potentially
                                              disabling him and allowing him to be killed or captured.

                                              As far as the conquest of the new world? It wasn't a couple of
                                              hundred soldiers. I would say it was much more a case of audacious
                                              Spanish tactics, Toledo steel, a professional army with veteran
                                              soldiers (Italian wars?), tens of thousands of native allies
                                              (Tlaxcalans/Tarascans), and most of all... European diseases.
                                              Remember la noche triste?

                                              I studied anthropology, graduated, and worked for several years in
                                              the cultural resource management world as a field archaeologist. I
                                              too have studied chert projectile points of various sizes. Flint
                                              knapping by striking a piece of chert with a hammerstone is much
                                              different than a chert projectile point striking and breaking a few
                                              rings of a chain mail coat. There are different forces at work.

                                              Are chert arrows effective against heavy european armor? Not likely.
                                              Can a heavy arrow-head fired from close range snap armored rings?
                                              Probably. The TV armor was probably flimsier than original armor
                                              worn for battlefield protection. Does it invalidate what was shown?
                                              No.

                                              Why didn't the America's abandon their rock weapons for metal ones?
                                              That's a pretty complicated question, but obviously the "arms race"
                                              of Europe didn't apply to the Native Americans in quite the same
                                              way. At the same time, obsidian is one of the sharpest materials on
                                              earth. It's used in eye surgery. On a side note, the Incans did use
                                              bronze weapons, as well as lithic weapons.

                                              As to referrences about Spaniards being shot down by native arrows.
                                              Read the above Historia. In 1520 the Spaniards were defeated
                                              during "la noche triste", when they were attacked and retreated from
                                              the Aztecs capital. Many Spaniards were killed, some by arrows. In
                                              1521 the Spaniards, numbering around 600 with between 75,000-90,000
                                              native allies, were defeated in open combat at the battle of
                                              Tlacopan. Finally, after a very long siege, and small pox raging
                                              rampant through the Aztec capital, Cortez captured and defeated the
                                              Aztecs.

                                              And to sum it up, here is a quote from Diaz' Historia about native
                                              missles:

                                              "the attack on Ordas began, and they poured in such incessant
                                              discharges of missile weapons, that they soon wounded above forty-
                                              six of our men, of whom twelve afterwards died."

                                              And again: "In the midst of all this, the stones and darts which
                                              were launched upon us from the terraces of the house tops did us
                                              astonishing injury."

                                              and again: "The arrows of the Mexicans wounded many of our horses,
                                              notwithstanding that they wore defensive armour"

                                              yet again: "Others of the enemy from the corridors, or within the
                                              railings and concavities of the temple, assailed us on every
                                              side with arrows and other missiles, so that we were unable even to
                                              maintain the ground we had gained. We were constrained therefore to
                                              retreat, every man of us being wounded, and forty-six of our number
                                              slain."

                                              get the idea? "while others, by continual flights of arrows from the
                                              houses, or with long lances from the canoes on each side, killed and
                                              wounded the men and horses"

                                              Flimsy chainmail or not on TV, native arrows did damage.

                                              --- In AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                                              <mailto:AncientWeapons%40yahoogroups.com> , "Kenneth Blair"
                                              <Kenneth.Blair@...> wrote:
                                              >
                                              > I examine chert artifacts and the test sounds like it was flawed
                                              > somehow. Chert is easily chipped, hence all the tools that can be
                                              shaped
                                              > by knapping.
                                              > The armour of the Spaniards is what allowed them to cut through
                                              masses
                                              > of warriors of various pre-Colombian peoples with very few
                                              casualties
                                              > from missile fire or combat. Horse and steel weapons, and gun
                                              powder, of
                                              > course meant that a few hundred adventurers could topple kingdoms.
                                              >
                                              > Think about it.
                                              > If a chert point pierced armour in ways that iron and steel points
                                              > simply didn't in most cases then how different would history be?
                                              > Tap a piece of chert with a rock (hammerstone), it will flake.
                                              This is
                                              > fine in 'new world' light armoured combat or hunting but against
                                              steel
                                              > or iron armour I don't expect chert would be so flash...otherwise
                                              why is
                                              > it abandoned for bronze or iron around the world?
                                              > The 'chain mail' must have been made of some pretty light gauge
                                              wire to
                                              > pop apart under such an object.
                                              > If they got a real armourer with some skill and asked for a suit
                                              and
                                              > backing material then it should stop it. Buying a segment of
                                              chainmail
                                              > off e-bay would not suffice.
                                              > Such tests on TV are often dodgy. The so-called 'plate armour' is
                                              a flat
                                              > thin sheet of metal from a barn yard up against a hay bail which
                                              then is
                                              > cut through by arrows.
                                              > When formed & shaped plate is used, more correctly, the arrows
                                              shatter,
                                              > buckle and deflect under test conditions.
                                              > Another experiment with quality chain with a good backing material
                                              and
                                              > it would stop a chert point every time, I would bet.
                                              > With chain the ability to stop steel/iron arrows when the proper
                                              backing
                                              > material is used seems fairly clear. It can stop metal arrows in
                                              tests
                                              > (but cuts through when backing material is removed in the same
                                              tests).
                                              > Saracens for example were annoyed to see crusading nights advancing
                                              > along the coast walking with half a dozen arrows sticking out of
                                              them.
                                              > Arrows did pierce chain on occasion, but it seems it was more
                                              effective
                                              > than it is given credit for.
                                              > A sheet of 'chain' on a dummy does not mean such crude chert arrows
                                              > pierced Spanish armour historically.
                                              >
                                              > Where are references to Spaniards being shot down by native bowmen
                                              to
                                              > justify such a test anyway?.
                                              >
                                              > ________________________________
                                              >
                                              > From: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                                              <mailto:AncientWeapons%40yahoogroups.com>
                                              > [mailto:AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                                              <mailto:AncientWeapons%40yahoogroups.com> ] On Behalf Of nwarnold99
                                              > Sent: Saturday, 20 January 2007 10:35 p.m.
                                              > To: AncientWeapons@yahoogroups.com
                                              <mailto:AncientWeapons%40yahoogroups.com>
                                              > Subject: [AncientWeapons] Re: Weapon types and function
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                              > Excellent help, and just what I was looking for. Thank you to the
                                              list.
                                              >
                                              > As an aside, I watched a history channel show about European
                                              contact
                                              > with the "New World". They showed the different weapons, tactics,
                                              etc
                                              > that armies of the old and new world utilized during their many
                                              > conflicts.
                                              >
                                              > In one example they showed a chert-tipped arrow being fired at a
                                              > chainmail shirt. I was surprised to see the arrow pierce right
                                              through
                                              > into the "dummy" underneath the chainmail.
                                              >
                                              > I also enjoyed the Falx picture, that looks devestating, and as
                                              I've
                                              > read a little about the Thracian/Roman conflicts it was nice to
                                              see a
                                              > picture of the weapon.
                                              >
                                              > Thanks again!
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                              > This communication, including any attachments, is confidential. If
                                              you are not the intended recipient, you should not read it - please
                                              contact me immediately, destroy it, and do not copy or use any part
                                              of this communication or disclose anything about it. Thank you.
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                                              >
                                              >
                                              > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                              >






                                              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                            • nwarnold99
                                              If I seemed irritated, my apologies. I admit I am no expert on ancient weapons. I think I was taken aback a bit by your response, as it seemed like this was an
                                              Message 22 of 22 , Jan 23, 2007
                                              • 0 Attachment
                                                If I seemed irritated, my apologies. I admit I am no expert on ancient
                                                weapons. I think I was taken aback a bit by your response, as it seemed
                                                like this was an argument you or the board has argued before. Sorry if
                                                I missed it. I really wanted to reply to your ending statement of:

                                                Where are references to Spaniards being shot down by native bowmen
                                                to justify such a test anyway?

                                                Again, it wasn't my intention to ruffle feathers, but I am a newbie
                                                when it comes to ancient weapons, swords, armor, etc. I was surprised
                                                by the television show, as I've never seen demonstrations of primative
                                                weapons vs. armor. Same with the picture of the "barbarian" with the
                                                falx. There was a little "WOW" factor for me after viewing the film and
                                                seeing that picture.

                                                Strawman? Nah.

                                                Maybe Tinman without backing ;)
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