Buckler Shield

The Buckler shield was a  small medieval shield that was widely used during the medieval times. Its small size made it a suitable medieval shield for hand-to-hand combat since it was easy to handle. Although it was used during the early medieval times, it became particularly popular during the middle and late medieval times.

Definition of a Buckler Shield

The buckler is derived from the old French word “Bocle” which means boss. The Buckler shield was a small shield which would be between 15cm to 45cm in diameter. The shield was gripped in the fist and could be easily controlled with a single hand. The Buckler shield was among those medieval shields that came in multiple forms. Thus it could be found in round as well as rectangular form.

  • Buckler Shields were small which made them light and easy to hold with one hand
  • The popularity of Buckler Shields increased during the high and late medieval periods
  • The origins of the name Buckler Shield came from the French word “Bocle”
  • Buckler Shields could be made in various shapes often round or rectangular
Buckler Shields

Small Buckler Shields used in sword fight

How was a Buckler Shield Used

The primary purpose of the buckler shield was to protect the sword hand and thus it was an ideal shield for the swordsmen. Since it was lightweight, the swordsman could handle it easily while engaging in fight with the other hand. Another advantage that the swordsman could have with buckler was that it could be used in grappling where the opponent’s arm could be wrapped up and bounded.

What Soldiers used Buckler Shields

The Buckler shield was among those medieval shields which were ideal for the swordsmen. Thus was it a weapon of defence for the common soldiers indulging in hand-to-hand combat with swords. It was specifically designed to deflect the attacking blades.

Buckler Shield Summary

Buckler Shield Round

Round Buckler Shield

Buckler shield was one of the most common medieval shields and was specifically useful for swordsmen because of its lightweight structure. It was designed to deflect the attacking blades and could be easily controlled. Its primary shape was round although it could also be found in rectangular form.

  • The Buckler Shield used by swordsmen helped to keep their hands protected
  • A Buckler Shield was light and could be used to attack the enemy especially if grappling
  • Buckler Shields were designed to deflect a blade that was its main purpose
  • Buckler Shield were ideal for hand-to-hand combat situations

Please see the links at the bottom of this Buckler Shield page that take you to other medieval shields pages such as the pravise shield and the Kite shield, learn how these medieval shields differed from the Buckler shield.


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