Head section of a pike

2882.1

Description

Steel double edged lozenge shaped blade of hollow ground lozenge section with acute point. Integral tall closed conical socket having pair of long narrow langets pointed at ends; one of langets is broken off at mid length & other is lacking one of its nails. The head is fastened to what may be original wooden staff of circular section which has been greatly shortened at some point.

Curator's Comments

The Callot etching shows sporting combats conducted on foot across a waist-high divider called the barriers. Long spears known as pikes were often used in this contest, the winner being determined by performance and hits made, much like a modern boxing match. Blows below the barriers were prohibited, so armor was worn only to the hips. Such armor included a helmet that locked onto the collar for improved protection against thrusts. (Armorer and Printmaker)

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