Pikes and Spears

From: Donald R. Oddy <donald_at_grove.demon.co.uk>
Date: Wed, 24 Jan 2001 01:33:57 GMT

>From: Mike Dawson <mdawson_at_mac.com>
>I'm not terribly familiar with Swiss Pike, (my specialty is late 12th-early
>13th Norman) but I believe in the real world it relied on much longer spears
>than allowed in the SCA. Nor were they big on charging.

16ft pikes were still in use in the English Civil War so they would be at least that. A decent sized unit is impossible to attack frontally with other melee weapons because you are about 10ft from your opponent. Swiss pikemen certainly did charge, but it relies on well trained troops to avoid losing formation. Same applies to Macedonian pikemen and even Greek Hoplites used a 12ft spear.

>As for Rocky attacking "weak points" on individuals, this may be the root
>of the misunderstanding. The SCA does prohibit _intentionally_ aiming at
>the throat, groin and inside of the elbow, and hands and from the knee
>down are not valid targets.

Perhaps this is why spears aren't a very effective weapon in the SCA. In a real battle those are just the sort or targets, along with unprotected parts of the face, which I would expect a spearman to aim at while hiding as much as possible behind his shield. And the threat of being poked in the eye with even a sharp stick will make anyone cautious.

This will be a big thing in Heortling conflicts where decent armour is rare and will be one of the problems faced in fighting heavily armoured Lunar soldiers. Where do you stick your spear to disable a hoplite? About the most vunerable place I can think of is his foot.

>Please help me stop writing about this on the list now.

Sorry, take it to email if you wish but I'm quite interested in the conclusion.

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