In Medieval battles, hand to hand combat weapons were deadly, and were common throughout all ranks in an army. During the Middle ages, “Swords and Daggers were the most common weapons in hand-to-hand combat” (“Weapons”).
These weapons of death could easily smite an opponent with a few blows. Swords were used as cut-and-thrust weapons, with blades over two feet (“Weapons”).
A soldier had to go through extensive training in order to be able to wield a sword. Another deadly combat weapon was the club.
Clubs were, “used as a close contact weapon, which could batter a knight’s armor” (Alchin).
With pure blunt force, a man could cave-in armor, and could easily injure an opponent. According to Will Fowler, author of “Ancient Weapons”, “Most clubs were made from heavy animal bones or thick wood,” explaining why the club was effective. With metal spikes at the end, a club could be turned into a dangerous mace. The battle axe was another baleful weapon that was only used by higher ranked soldiers. Knights during Medieval battles, “often rode into battle armed with a heavy battle axe.
This had a sharp edge and a spike” (Fowler 8).
Battle axes were brutal weapons that could give the wielder an immediate advantage against an opponent. Swords, clubs, and battle axes were all examples of how effective hand-to-hand combat was. Another style of warfare was ranged combat, which ranged from bows to cannons. According to Linda Alchin, “Lower classes and foot soldiers mostly used ranged shooting weapons. ” Bows were very effective weapons and could take down an approaching line of soldiers from a distance.
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Medieval bows “were constructed in two parts, with firm wood that could withstand the tension of 4 men pulling back with all their strength” (Alchin).
With all the tension they could withstand, a man could send an arrow flying with enough momentum to pierce the outer chest plate of a knight. The weapon was so effective, “By 1252 AD, all men able to carry a bow were required to wield one” (Alchin).
Another great weapon that was similar to the bow was the crossbow. These weapons were mechanical and all an operator had to do was load, aim and fire.
The crossbow could send an arrow at a far greater velocity than a normal bow could, and could now pierce a knight’s armor. This weapon was quite dangerous compared to other weaponry at the time, and many unsuccessful attempts were made to ban the weapon (Weapons).
One of the most powerful ranged weapons during the Medieval Ages was the cannon. By the 1400s, cannons could fire cannonballs weighing 800 pounds, which was brought the downfall of Constantinople (“Weapons”).
Ranged weapons such as bows, crossbows, and cannon brought great military advantages in battles.
One of the most important combat types was siege warfare, which was effective in many situations, but was risky at the same time. Sieges were usually laid on large villages or towns, and would often cut of the supply of food and water into the city. As the city weakened, “attackers would try to get over the walls using ladders, siege towers and grapples” (McDonald).
In order to prevent this from happening, “arrow slits, concealed doors for sallies and deep water wells were integral for resisting siege” (McDonald).
The only way a siege could be prevented was to stop it before it happened, which was hard. Attackers would try to undermine the walls, and would sometimes succeed, but the mines would most likely collapse (Alchin).
Sometimes the mines would not be able to stand the weight of the walls. The enemies then turned to more direct methods and would try to ram the door down with a battering ram (Alchin).
The Assyrians have long been known as a ruthless and barbaric people of the ancient civilizations. While this may be true in some instances, it is not an entirely accurate view of the Empire of Assyria. The Assyrians took their warfare seriously; in fact they studied war techniques like a science (Riley, 45). The Assyrians even had special schools set up to teach sapping (military demolition of ...
It was essential to cover siege towers, ladders, and battering rams with wet animal skins.
Since they were all made out of wood, they could easily be set on fire by an enemy (Fowler 8).
However, when stone started to be used, this was not needed. After the enemies got through the walls and in the city, they would be able to conquer it. Siege warfare was quite effective, but it was a multi-step process that could go wrong anywhere. However, if it was done properly, would give satisfying results, which was why Sieges were one of the most significant types of warfare during the Middle Ages.
Siege, Combat, and Ranged weapons were all effective during the Middle Ages, but were deadly and formidable. Siege warfare was devastating to the opponent, but required many different components to be done properly. Ranged and projectile weapons gave the user a great benefit when facing an opponent. Combat weapons were popular throughout all kingdoms, but could still cause devastating damage for an enemy. Medieval warfare was significant to the development of these 3 groups of weapons, and it inspired many of the weapons that would eventually be invented in the future.