Carolingian Weapons and Weaponry

Carolingian Weapons and Weaponry

Carolingians were Frankish rulers who forged a formidable military made of Frankish warriors during the 8th century.

Carolingian military prowess played a very powerful role in shaping the outlook of Western Europe in the centuries after the fall of the Roman Empire.

Most significantly, the Carolingians were able to break the advance of the Moors in north-east Iberia and by the beginning of the 9th century, had forged a huge Empire on the back of their military strength.

The key to Carolingian military strength was excellent organization and a high degree of training which was complemented by skilled use of weapons such as the sword, lance and bow and arrow.

Two types of swords were used by the Carolingian cavalrymen on the battlefield.

Carolingian Lance

The Lance was the primary weapon wielded by all troops in the Carolingian army.

This was directly an outcome of the fact that lances were inexpensive to produce and yet highly effective on battlefield with the right training.

Carolingian soldiers would become expert wielders of lances.

The Carolingian lance was typically heavy and large which would prove lethal in close combat.

So vital was lance to Carolingian warfare that a Carolingian army would carry a large quantity of lances as a reserve in case the lances used by the warriors were damaged or broken in combat.

A very important feature of the Carolingian lance was the winged spearhead.

This particular type of spearhead was first used in Western Europe by the Carolingians and had the vital advantage of not getting stuck in the armor or chain-mail of an enemy combatant.

Carolingians were Frankish rulers who forged a formidable military made of Frankish warriors during the 8th century.

Carolingian Javelin

A smaller and lighter variant of the Carolingian lance was used as missile weapon by the Carolingian cavalry.

This type of javelin allows wrecking harm at enemy lines from a distance but due to its limited efficacy, its use was rather rare compared to the standard lance.

Carolingian Bows

Bows were more important for the Carolingian military as a missile weapon rather than the javelin.

Historically extant Carolingian military edicts reveal that Carolingian soldiers were frequently required to carry a bow and arrows as an essential weapon on the battlefield.

Carolingian archers typically played their part at the beginning of the battle when they would launch a barrage of arrows towards enemy lines.

Every Carolingian soldier carried at least 12 arrows with his bow.

Despite the widespread use of the bow on the battlefield, Carolingians didn’t rely on it as a decisive weapon in any battle and merely used it as an auxiliary aid.

Charlemagne was the legendary King of the Carolingian Empire!

Carolingian Swords

Two types of swords were used by the Carolingian cavalrymen on the battlefield.

One of these was called the sax which was usually 80 cm in length and had an iron-made single-edged blade.

The second type of sword used by the Carolingians was a longsword measuring as much as 100 cm in length with a double-edged blade.

Swords were comparatively expensive weapons and because of this, they were usually owned only by the rich Frankish aristocrats in the Carolingian army.

Swords also served as family heirlooms in the Frankish society and were usually set up with expensive jewels and inlaid inscriptions.