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~ Medieval Weapons ~

-  Pole Arms    -


The medieval pole arm, also known as a pole weapon, consisted of a slashing or cutting weapon mounted on the end of a long, usually wooden, shaft which was called the 'haft'. The length of the haft varied between 5 feet and 20 feet or more. The length often depended on the desired use of the pole arm and also the specific type of pole arm, of which there were many.

The pole arm was a close combat weapon developed in general for the infantry which ultimately was able to put the infantry on equal, and sometimes superior, standing with the cavalry and those wearing heavy armour. Heavy armour was something which many swords could not even pierce, yet in addition to the spikes often present on the pole arm, the pole arm's length increased leverage for cutting the armour. In this way, the pole arm was a highly useful addition to the weaponry available to those on the battlefield throughout medieval history and led to the increased importance of the infantrymen. One can see the true importance of this development when one considers that prior to the introduction of the pole arm, cavalry charges could easily overrun an infantry and so lead to defeat.

Pole Arms - continued


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