A weapon used in the Middle Ages ( Medieval period ) by a Foot Soldier
Description of Spears
The weapons used during the Middle Ages include the Spears. The description of the Spears which provides basic facts and information about the weapon is as follows:
- Spears - This weapon dates back to antiquity and was used for hunting and war, consisting of a shaft, usually of wood, with a sharpened head
- Used as a thrusting weapon or as a missile
- The javelin was a type of spear used by the ancient Greeks and the pilum was the name of the throwing spear which was used by the Romans
- An Angon was a throwing spear used during the Middle Ages. The angon was a 6 foot long spear with a slender iron neck featuring a barbed head. The angon was essentially identical to the Roman pilum
- Although often used as a long-shafted projectile weapon it was designed principally for thrusting, although many spears were also capable of slashing blows.
- The shape of the blade razor-sharp and pointed
- The Spears weapon could be mounted on either a long shaft or a short shaft
- A blow could apply tremendous force
- The weapon was versatile - cheap to produce and easy to use requiring limited training
- Type or group of weapons - Polearms - The spear is the most common type of pole weapon. These weapons consisted of variations of poles or shafts of varying lengths with different 'heads' including spikes, hammers, spears, axe etc.
- The spear eventually developed into the bayonet but it was also the weapon which developed into the lance
The Middle Ages was an extremely violent era in history featuring battles in both Europe and the Holy Land when the crusades, and the crusaders who fought them, were numerous. Feudal Lords and Knights used such weapons as the Spears in different types of warfare. The quest for power led to invasions of lands and territories which had to be fought for. Siege warfare, waged to win a castle or a walled town or city, was a frequent occurrence during the Middle Ages. Warfare during the Middle Ages, or Medieval era called for a variety of weapon expertise. Knights and men-at-arms ( foot soldiers, or archers ) used different types of weapons. The Spears was predominantly used by a Foot Soldier. The weapons used were dictated according to status and position. The weapons, armor and horse of the Knight were extremely expensive - the fighting power of just one knight was worth 10 ordinary soldiers.
Skill in the use of Medieval weapons and understanding the strategy of Medieval Warfare was necessary and a played a vital part in Medieval life. The training required by a Foot Soldier to use the Spears :
- Soldiers were trained in various manoeuvres to Strike, Thrust, Slash and Takedown their enemies by effective use of the spear
- Training method - The training method practised in the use of the spear was based on strength and accuracy in hitting the target
- A "hit" was scored in Medieval weapons training by making contact with a defined target area
- A soldier could be trained to use a spear within a matter of weeks
The Makers and Making of the Spears
This Medieval weapon was made by a blacksmith. The materials required to make this weapon were:
Langets were added to strengthen this type of weapon. These were metal strips riveted to the the shaft of polearms to reinforce the torque against the head, and to provide protection to the potentially weak point between the weapon-head and the shaft. Blacksmiths are usually associated with making weapons in a village smithy but blacksmiths were an important part of a fighting a