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Old 19th January 2021, 01:47 PM   #1
cel7
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Default Pair of lance heads

Also from the auction this weekend (see my other post) came this nice pair of lance heads or pike heads.
I thinkt that they are 17th century European, but not sure.
Unfortunately the langets have not the original length but that being said, i find them quite atractive.
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Old 25th January 2021, 02:29 PM   #2
fernando
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C'mon guys ... no comments ?
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Old 25th January 2021, 03:20 PM   #3
Richard G
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OK, I'll bite.
They look to me as if they could be the shoe of a lance or pike, rather than the head.
And I can't see a reason why they shouldn't be old.
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Richard
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Old 25th January 2021, 03:52 PM   #4
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Do you think so, Ricard ?
... with such (would be) long langets ?
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Old 25th January 2021, 04:35 PM   #5
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I'm not sure about that. The decorated thickening in the center looks like something that you would find on a wild bore hunting spear, for preventing entering to deep. But I am not sure either.
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Old 25th January 2021, 04:41 PM   #6
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This being the head end of a lance, i don't see in its design any such purpose ... if you don't mind .
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Old 25th January 2021, 07:05 PM   #7
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Pike heads, 1500s. Armour piercing.

Congratulations. They are beautiful!
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Last edited by Victrix : 25th January 2021 at 07:19 PM.
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Old 25th January 2021, 10:21 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Victrix
Pike heads, 1500s. Armour piercing.

Congratulations. They are beautiful!


Thank you, very interesting.
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Old 26th January 2021, 01:24 AM   #9
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Victrix, thank you for that pic of armor-piercing heads. I was always under the assumption that this style of head was very late in pike history. Naval pikes with 4 sides appeared around 1800, whereas their diamond-headed and leaf-shaped patterns preceded this form, but this is apparently ONLY in naval pikes. Interesting!
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Old 26th January 2021, 08:25 AM   #10
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I posted the question yesterday on another forum and got this comprehensive answer. I think this brings some clarity.



These are pike-heads with bodkin points, rather than leaf-shaped points. The bodkin style is less common than points with leaf-shaped blades, but not by any means rare. I'm not aware that there's any evidence to suggest that bodkin points were considered especially well suited to piercing armor. Perhaps they were more durable, but mostly I think they were simply a different style than leaf-shaped blades. They may have been easier to make, but the ornamental work on the points that you show suggests that any potentially greater ease of manufacture is unlikely to have been a significant factor in choosing one style or the other. The spheres between the blades and the sockets suggest, as your other informant indicated, that these are sixteenth-century examples. There's some evidence that this ornamented style may have been most popular early in the century, before 1530, at least in England, but it appears to have persisted throughout the century, particularly in Italy.

You can see bodkin-point pike-heads and pike-heads with beads and decorated sockets like those you show, on the British Royal Armouries' Web site. If you prefer, you can also go to their collections search page and look for other examples. My search was for "pike" in the 16th century (the first entered in the dialogue box, and the second chosen in the date filter).

I found two photos with other examples like yours, combining bodkin points with the spherical ornaments in the Royal Armouries' collection:

Object Number: VII.767
Object Number: VII.137

(I'm not sure that the object numbers in these cases refer to the points showing both bodkin blades and beads. In fact, in the first case I'm sure that the object number is for the other pike.)

Edited to add: Here's an ornamented bodkin point from the seventeenth century:
Object Number: VII.2952

This is just a quick answer without extensive research. You may well be able to find more.

I hope this proves helpful.

Best,

Mark
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Old 26th January 2021, 10:43 AM   #11
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Great find; just as Victrix has previously spotted (post #7).
Just tell me something, Mark; is the cross section of your lance heads square ... or rectangular ?
The angle of the picture makes it a bit tricky !
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Old 26th January 2021, 03:15 PM   #12
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Here is the link to the parallel discussion over at MyArmoury.
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Old 26th January 2021, 04:40 PM   #13
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Default Silly questions ...

One (question) nothing to do with the other ...

1 - We already saw here a few examples of these lances, as reputedly of European origin. No doubt about that; yet those exuberant bulbous reinforcements (?) on the base of the blades, with that decoration, look so ... non European ... to me, of course .

2 - The multiple file marks on one of the tangs. If these were (pre-industrial) firearms this would be an assembly mark; but in a two part lance .
Anyone guess what they are for ?

.
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Old 26th January 2021, 10:27 PM   #14
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Default not for poking piggy

Quote:
Originally Posted by cel7
I'm not sure about that. The decorated thickening in the center looks like something that you would find on a wild bore hunting spear, for preventing entering to deep. But I am not sure either.


The globose thickening at the base of the points will not serve as stops for a boar-spear head. These things will keep going on in and Hogzilla will be on top of the hunter in a flash. Take a look at these two Germanic / Central European boar spears. A crosspiece in the form of a piece of deer antler lashed on with thick rawhide is the blade stop. Sometimes the stop is a short metal bar attached with a rivet. Southern European and English spears tend to have metal crossguards below the blades, forged integrally with either the base of the blade or to the solid shank between it and the socket.
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Old 27th January 2021, 11:28 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philip
... A crosspiece in the form of a piece of deer antler lashed on with thick rawhide is the blade stop...

Indeed Filipe, a system as old as already in use in Classical Antiquity; Silo Italico (1st-2nd century) already made mention of it in his poems.

(depictions dated XIV and XVI centuries).


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Old 27th January 2021, 05:38 PM   #16
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The general consensus is these are pike heads, and I'm not going to disagree, but I will explain why I thought there is a possibility they may be shoes.
1, They are square sided; not unknown, but unusual for a pike head.
2, The spike, or bodkin, is only 10cm long. This may be sufficient to penetrate a thick coat and armour, but only just. Bearing in mind pikes were a defence against cavalry, most horses could probably survive a jab of only 10cms, especially if protected.
3, Further, there is a possibility that if the ball is shoved through anything like mail or armour it would prove a hindrance in disengaging the weapon.
4, There seems to be a 'flow' in most pikes, even those with a ball or ring, from the tip through to the shaft which is missing here. The spike stops abruptly at the ball and there is a definite 'shoulder' where it meets the shaft.
5, If they are shoes they do not have to be from a pike. They could be the shoes of, say, a halberd or spontoon which was pre-eminently a parade weapon.
6, I cannot explain what seems to be unnecessarily long langets for a shoe.
Best wishes
Richard
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Old 27th January 2021, 06:25 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fernando
One (question) nothing to do with the other ...

1 - We already saw here a few examples of these lances, as reputedly of European origin. No doubt about that; yet those exuberant bulbous reinforcements (?) on the base of the blades, with that decoration, look so ... non European ... to me, of course .

2 - The multiple file marks on one of the tangs. If these were (pre-industrial) firearms this would be an assembly mark; but in a two part lance .
Anyone guess what they are for ?

.


In heraldry, a torse or wreath is a twisted roll of fabric laid about the top of the helmet and the base of the crest. It has the dual purpose of masking the join between helm and crest, and of holding the mantling in place. (Wikipedia)
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Old 27th January 2021, 06:57 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Victrix
In heraldry, a torse or wreath is a twisted roll of fabric laid about the top of the helmet and the base of the crest. It has the dual purpose of masking the join between helm and crest, and of holding the mantling in place. (Wikipedia)

If you consider that one and the other serve the same purpose ... i won't oppose, Vitrix.
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