Pole-axes and halberds were blunt?

Most of these weapons were to dent armour and once this had been done, the owner in the suit would also be dented, and most likely dead. Sharp is not needed, just blunt force - now lets see if the video agrees?

Yeah, but with more good arguments given - nice post.
Bad title. Should be "Why didn't they have cutting edges?" As the still picture shows, that polearm had a sharp point and there are plenty of suits of armor that have nice, square holes where they were punched through.

I made dozens of arms from 1100-1500 and owned two historic pieces, one English polearm and one Turkish mace. None of the heavy ones had cutting edges. All of the lighter swords did. Don't be fooled, the edge on that poleaxe would cut you clean if swung and connected with flesh. It just wasn't made to "cut" armor. Armor isn't like sign sheet steel, it's thickness depends on its location. The breast would be twice the thickness as the sides for instance. It was also tempered, not soft and would dull a sharp blade quickly.

Cutting edges returned when firearms made heavy armor obsolete.
Had to look through my files to find this. The worst case of armor insufficiency.

Just for chuckles, I've included pieces I made, a pole arm that definitely is not for use against armor (crowd control) and a sword that shows an alternative method of denting/folding armor. The flambard is 5'3" and 6lb. The crenelations are wedged in cross section like other swords. You also fight with it much like a pole arm. Yes it can be swung but not with any speed, just at a clear shot.


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  • EnglishFlambardca1500.jpg
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