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Scott Hanson




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PostPosted: Sat 28 Apr, 2012 8:03 pm    Post subject: Did knights use morningstars?         Reply with quote

Probably a stupid question, but did they? I had always understood the morningstar to be a peasant weapon, and that knights, or anyone else who had the money, would use a mace.

It just came to mind when I saw something about kanabo, and the wikipedia entry shows this picture of a samurai holding one.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Samurai_Tokugawa_Era.jpg

It made me curious as to why it would be an acceptable weapon to a samurai but potentially looked down on by his European counterpart.

Proverbs 27:17 "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another"

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Henrik Granlid




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PostPosted: Sun 29 Apr, 2012 9:02 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Although Kanabo were little more than ceremonial weapons, they were simply too heavy to be used on the battlefield.

And I see no real reason to not use a morningstar or flail, especially on horseback where you can muster an awful lot of force with just something straight, having a joint to further accellerate things would only be a benefit methinks.
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Luke Kramer




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PostPosted: Sun 29 Apr, 2012 9:15 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have heard the Wallace collection has a professionally made, nicely decorated morningstar in their collection. This is most likely a decorative piece, but if it was so much a symbol of peasantry, why bother to "fancify" it so much?

I have also heard of knights carrying high-grade morningstars, but have had trouble locating any documentation to back me up.
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Scott Hanson




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PostPosted: Sun 29 Apr, 2012 9:37 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Henrik, as far as I've heard, morningstars are typically not jointed. I've usually heard an impact weapon with a short chain referred to as a flail. Though, this wikipedia article seems to say it could be either. I was thinking of the longer hafted infantry version.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morning_star_(weapon)

Luke, the link above backs up what you were saying. I'd love to see some of these more professional morningstars. The only ones I've seen were all like the ones at the Castlerock museum, and very crude.

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William P




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PostPosted: Sun 29 Apr, 2012 10:12 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

the kanabo were not all ceremonial because a few were anymore than to assume all european swords were too unwuieldy and heavy because bearing and executioners swords were..

one kanabo whoes photo was taken by Eric S, shows a kanabo weighing approx 4 pounds or so and being about 4-6 foot long, so in reality its not much heaver than a daneaxe. (the photo is on the list of kanabo photos on wikipedia..)
and some kanabo are seen in one handed varieties which looks alot like those trench maces.

the first question really is.. define 'morningstar' is a morningstar a type of mace or flail, does it refer to the shape of the head? aka a spiked head?
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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Mon 30 Apr, 2012 5:40 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

We're not all defining morningstar the same way. See this thread for info: Is "Morningstar" just a name? .

There are numerous definitions of the term from published works in that thread.

Happy

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Scott Hanson




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PostPosted: Mon 30 Apr, 2012 7:16 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Good point.

The question I was trying to ask is this: "did knights use a two handed staff weapon with spikes on one end (either with a wooden ball with spikes or a thickened end with spikes)?"

That's the weapon I'm familiar with as a "morningstar". It would be interesting to see some of the woodcuts or other period depictions mentioned on wikipedia.

I'm pretty sure knights did use weapons with a short haft, short chain, and spiked steel ball. I would have termed that a military flail, but it appears that "morningstar" may also be a correct term for that. Sort of similar to how many weapons would have been simply called "swords".

I'd also love to see some of the more refined versions mentioned in collections in the wikipedia article. Couldn't find anything in my short search last night.

Proverbs 27:17 "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another"

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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Mon 30 Apr, 2012 8:55 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The flail was good enough for the Holy Roman Emperor, at least for sporting purposes.


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Scott Hanson




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PostPosted: Mon 30 Apr, 2012 2:18 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Couple of related threads:

http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=8784

http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=8703

Still looking for some period art that depicts a knight wielding one of these.

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Scott Hanson




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PostPosted: Mon 04 Jun, 2012 1:57 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Bump.

I haven't been able to find any details on the method of assembly or detailed pictures of the "professional grade" morningstar yet. Hoping someone will have some references for me.

Proverbs 27:17 "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another"

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Benjamin Floyd II




PostPosted: Tue 05 Jun, 2012 10:16 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Sean, where is that painting from?
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Tue 05 Jun, 2012 11:07 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Benjamin Floyd II wrote:
Sean, where is that painting from?


That's from "Freydal" and grabbed from online. Not sure why somebody neon-ized it.

-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Ryan S.




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PostPosted: Tue 05 Jun, 2012 11:28 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I think the idea of peasant weapons is a sort of a myth. If weapons were meant to be status symbols, they would be fancier. I think being skilled in many weapons was considered important, so once it was considered a proper weapon (not an improvised one) knights will train to use it. Just my thought though.
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Steve Shimmer




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2012 9:48 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm usually content to lurk, but I thought I'd chime in on this one.

I've seen a couple of morningstars recently.

This one was at a reenactment event:


And this is the one at The Wallace Collection, mentioned in an earlier post:


Sorry for the poor image quality, these were taken before I got my new camera.

I'm due to visit The Wallace Collection again next month so I shall try for some better snaps if there's an interest.
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Scott Hanson




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2012 1:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'd definitely be interested in seeing some more pictures of that morningstar!
Proverbs 27:17 "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another"

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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2012 1:57 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mace
Unknown Artist / Maker
Milan, Italy
2nd half of 16th century
Iron or steel, gold and silver, chiselled, false-damascened and russeted
Length: 48 cm, haft
Weight: 1.54 kg
A986
European Armoury III



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-Sean

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Scott Hanson




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PostPosted: Thu 07 Jun, 2012 8:46 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks Sean!

Now that I can see the details better, it looks almost identical to one in the Castlerock museum collection. I think the curator mentioned something about it having a sister in another museum, so I'm guessing this is it. It's a beautiful piece.

Proverbs 27:17 "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another"

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Steve Shimmer




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PostPosted: Sun 08 Jul, 2012 9:50 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Here's the promised close up photos of the "morning star type mace" from The Wallace Collection.





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Eric G.




PostPosted: Sun 08 Jul, 2012 9:13 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Steve,

Those are beautiful pictures. Thank you for resisting your urge to lurk and posting these =)

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Roger Norling




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PostPosted: Sun 08 Jul, 2012 11:28 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Not quite knights, but at least knechte; simple morningstars were indeed also used, as well as flails. Check out the images from Chronicon Helvetiae, especially image #15:

http://www.hroarr.com/chronicon-helvetiae/

Two more threads on the flail.

http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...ght=flails

http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...ight=flail



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