Falchion. This formidable sword is known under many names and is found in various types and forms. In its popularity, he can even be compared with the "wicked" Catholic Church of the Flamembrg "Flaming Clinics". But if the latter was very expensive in production and served in wealthy nobles and elite mercenaries, then Fakes was a more advanced version of the tone for cutting meat and was widespread everywhere. Being initially weapons of poor artisans and peasants, Fakes quickly became a nationwide pet and later it was happy to use both simple crusaders and noble knights.
Fake is a short single-olese sword, which was very popular in Europe from the XIII to the XVI century. The English name "Falchion" comes from the French Fauchon (Fauchon). This name is Latin Falxs, denoting braid, sickle or just a weapon with an oblique-like blade, although in fact the blade did not have a very pronounced bend. The main feature of Fakes is the characteristic expansion at the end. It shifts the center of gravity to the top of the blade, endowing the sword to the stunning punchy force.
In many ways, the design of classic fakes is similar to Turkish saber and Chinese Dao. Therefore, there is an assumption that in Europe these swords appeared thanks to the Crusaders, who later began to make new weapons imitating oriental curved blades. But this is just partly the truth. Despite the fact that during the crusades, the knights really captured a lot of trophy blades, the design features of which were later the embodiment of European blacksmiths in Yervopia weapons, the first well-known prototypes of Fakes were seen again at the beginning of the XIII century and they were most likely to be Heavy swords of ancient German tribes. Excellent fighting qualities of Fakes made it popular among all military estates. His blows were obtained so crushing, which was damaged even to the enemy in a solid iron armor. According to the preserved certificates, these swords were mainly used to cut off the head and limbs, as well as crushing heavy armor. In the latter case, if the lats and endured the blows of Fakes, the enemy still received bone fractures or significant damage to the internal organs.
Advantages and disadvantages of fake
Based on the descriptions preserved to our time, you can mark several key advantages of the sword. The main is a shifted center of gravity, making it a kind of combination of the ax and a sword. Fakes has a relatively large, as for a short sword weight, allowing to apply strong blows on the enemy, while without prejudice to accuracy and maneuverability. It was also quite effectively used as a throwing weapon (we are talking about those varieties that had a pointed end and sharpened on both sides edge).
According to the sources and the results of practical experiences conducted by historical reconstructors, the main disadvantage of this sword was a wide amplitude of movement at a swing, which made a warrior vulnerable to a skilled opponent. Such a feature also appeared noticeably when the warriors fell in a dense rank and fought in pinch. Here the advantages of the sword could not reveal in full force. As for the melee one on one, then here the owner of Fakes is pretty inferior to the enemy armed with a long severe sword. In this case, he needed to show skill to apply noticeable damage, without exposing himself to danger.
Who used fakes and why were they so popular?
Falchion is a sword that was very actively used in the feudal armies in the Middle Ages. The main reason for such popularity is simplicity. Most often, it was made of ordinary low carbon iron, strengthening the soluble edge with steel. In addition, the training of the warrior took less time than the standard knight training. In the Middle Ages, the subjects of royal vassals were called to feudal militia in order to fight for their monarch. But the organized and structured training of commoners of military training, given the peculiarities of their daily life, of course and the speeches did not go. Therefore, Fakes was the perfect weapon in the hands of a strong, but not very sophisticated in the fencing fencing.
However, as historical chronicles show, they did not disappear with this weapon, none crusaders nor noble knights from the highest classes. The solemn ceremony of such a sword, of course, will not incur, but those who life was more expensive pride, he never let down. Best of all the effectiveness of Fakes was proven in a countertime war, when the "Simple English Ran" in the Pooh and Prahu rose a noble French knighthood.
Types of Fakes
According to the generally accepted classification, two main types of fakes are distinguished. They have noticeable differences and, apparently, have a different origin.
The classic fakes of the first type is the most traditional for Europe and on the engravings of the time it is most often found precisely. It features a straight mist and one-sided sharpening. Its length is approximately 80-100 cm, and the weight is about 1300-1500 grams. According to researchers, the prototype of this sword is simple combat knives of German tribes.
The second type of Fakes explicitly indicates that its creators were strongly inspired by the type of trophy weapons captured in the crusades. In this case, the blade refers to a separate type, since the blade is strongly bevelled, has a long point and one-and-a-half sharpening (the softener is additionally hurned). This weapon retained the punching force of the classic fake, but it also allowed to carry stakes. Because of the unusual European knighthood of appearance, they initially did not gain much popularity, but in the XV-XVI centuries were used quite wide.
It can also be noted a separate subtype of fakes, which appears in the XIV-XV centuries and is an evolutionary continuation of the second. Its characteristic differences is a long tip, strongly bevelled end of the blade and sharpening its outer face (the second type it is okhom). This feature allows the use of an angle formed by the blade with a full-fledged shock surface. The fakes of the third type were in the course longer all and later served as an auxiliary weapon for landscape, armed with civenemers or alabards. Subsequently, they transformed into a classic European saber.
Falchion - Myths and Prejudice
Two common myths were associated with these swords. The first is the low quality of the weapon, which was always worse than any other knights used at the time. The second was that Fakes were usually used only by commoners in fights with robber and for disassembling among themselves. However, both of these statements are erroneous. From the preserved historical sources it can be seen that the nobility the sword used no less popular than that of the poor. This is evidenced by even the preserved decorative specimens, decorated with gilding and engraving. And on some, even personal coat of arms were engraved, as, for example, the personal coat of arms of the ruler of Florence of the Great Duke of Tuscan Kozoo I Medici.
Initially, Fakes could really differ extremely low quality. The blade was made of low-carbon "dirty" iron - crims - and had a simple curved handle without Ephesus. But after this weapon spread to the highest pricing of warriors, the situation has changed. Already from the end of the XIV century, fakes for the knights and the royal guard were made from high-quality steel made for the best (at that time) technology. For this, the ore melted at the same temperature with the addition of charcoal (to increase carbonistics) and hand over the rubbing surface of the spectacle on it steel sawdust, mixed with nitrogen-containing substance (most often it was a bird litter). As a result, the sword was getting stronger and sharp so much that "I cut iron lats like a dress."
Another point, indicating a valid attitude to this weapon, is a learning technique. Notes have been preserved about special training systems that were in the course of many Knights of Italy, England and France. With the technique of ownership, the fakes began to acquaint from 7 years along with another traditional weapon. Since the age of 14, he followed the second stage of learning. Here, the knights have already practiced various "vicious" blows and maneuvers associated with the specific characteristics of Fakes.
And although Fucking has never been a super-builder, which could completely replace ordinary knight swords, makeups and axes, his contribution to the story is difficult to overestimate. Some manuscripts indicate that he was the main weapon in the feudal militia and the third most important element of weapons for the knights after the main sword and Bulava. Therefore, he enjoyed success in the battlefields for over three centuries and later became the basis for several other types of cold weapons.