The Two-handed Sword, History, Design and Use

A beautifully illustrated history of the two-handed sword. The two-handed sword was a fiercesome weapon used in small numbers during the late Middle Ages. – Highly Recommended

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NAME: The Two-handed Sword, History, Design and Use
FILE: R2806
AUTHOR: Neil Melville
PUBLISHER: Pen & Sword
BINDING: hard back 
PAGES: 230
PRICE: £25.00
GENRE: Non Fiction
SUBJECT: Edged tools, edged weapons, swords, two-handed sword, Germany, 
Switzerland, late Middle Ages

ISBN: 1-52673-313-7

IMAGE: B2806.jpg
BUYNOW: http://tinyurl.com/yxtskuj3
LINKS:  
DESCRIPTION:   A beautifully illustrated history of the two-handed sword. 
The two-handed sword was a fiercesome weapon used in small numbers during 
the late Middle Ages. -  Highly Recommended

The author has drawn on manuals from the time to provide a comprehensive review of the history of 
the two-handed sword during the late Middle Ages with photographs of surviving examples, together 
with drawings and paintings reproduced mainly in full colour through the text.

In the hands of a skilled swordsman, these fiercesome weapons could produce terrible wounds and 
also had a psychobiological effect on the opposing troops. Used mainly by mercenaries from Germany 
and Switzerland, these weapons appeared on battlefields across Europe during the 15th and 16th Century
in two forms, one with two straight edges to a straight pointed blade, and another with two wavy edges. 
There were however other two-handed swords in use over a longer period in a slightly different form, 
notably as used by Highlanders and Lowlanders in Scotland.

In the set piece battles of Europe, in the final years of the Middle Ages, armies still formed lines that 
closely engaged. It was a battle of strength and endurance where most of those engaged ended up 
with some wounds from the close quarters fighting. A two-handed sword with a blade from 1.5 to 
2 metres in length gave added reach and force, frequently employed from high guard. As the weapon 
required a large and strong soldier to use it effectively, it was intimidating, particularly as the two 
lines of troops moved together.

The life of the weapon might have been longer had it not been for the increasing use of gunpowder 
in field guns and small arms. This made the old techniques of close quarters fighting largely obsolete,
 leading to a more fluid form of fighting in set piece battles where the gun and canon could be used 
to break up close order formations and engage beyond the range of sword and pike, cavalry following 
to run down the exposed soldiers.

A very interesting book that brings the weapon to life.