Forged in Fire: Top 5 Strongest Blades in History | History


– Hey, gang. Dave Baker. Today, I want to take a
look at the weapons wielded by the strongest
warriors that ever lived in honor of
History’s new show, “The Strongest Man in History,” I’m pretty sure these guys could
handle these weapons, probably with one in either hand. [ROCK MUSIC] This monster of a blade
is the Scottish Claymore. Now the Scottish
Claymore may be the most iconic long sword in history. The name Claymore comes
from the Gaelic Claidheamh Mor, which means “great sword.” And great sword it is. At about 5 feet in length, 4
feet of which is the blade, it was such a large weapon
that the average soldier had to use two
hands to wield it, making it a fearsome,
intimidating weapon on the battlefield. The weapon was first
introduced in the 1500s and used extensively by
Scottish Highland warriors all the way through the 1700s. But the Highland
warriors were such a fearsome and deadly
group that even the Vikings were intimidated by them. This was a powerful weapon
wielded by powerful warriors. This massive and intimidating
sword is the Zweihander. Now, the design of this
blade, with its parrying lugs and large guard and
the wave of the blade, was used extensively
in pike battles. The guard could be used to
push pikes up out of the way. And the waves of the
blades could be used when smashing down on pikes. It wouldn’t slide off. It would actually catch
and break the pikes. Up to 6 feet long, weighing
up to 8 pounds, this was the weapon of choice
for the elite guards of the Landsknechte mercenaries,
German mercenaries who fought throughout Europe and were
some of the finest foot soldiers of their time,
notably enlisted by the future Holy Roman Emperor,
Maximilian I. They helped him with his rise to
power in the late 15th century. Now, the Landsknechte
used these swords extensively in the Italian wars
from the 1490s to the 1550s. Now these weapons were
not used by small guys. These were used
by large warriors with the power to fight all day
long with a weapon this size. [ROCK MUSIC] How come? Now this iconic
weapon is the Nagamaki. The word “nagamaki”
roughly translates to long wrap, which is one of
the features of this weapon. It’s long-handled. The blades could be roughly 3
feet long with an equal length of handle wrapped in
leather or silk cord, giving it a lot of leverage
and action for the blade. Nice. Now, it’s hard to pinpoint the
exact origins of the Nagamaki. Some references mention
it in 794 to 1185, where it would have been used
by Japan’s deadliest warriors– the Samurai. You can see that it’s a
versatile, light, fast cutting weapon. Truly one of my favorites. [ROCK MUSIC] Now, this deadly
piece of business is the knightly poleaxe,
favorite of armored knights from the 15th century. Now with its three
deadly features– an axe head; the chop;
a thrusting point for taking a man off a horse
or a man in front of you on ground; and for
armor, a hammerhead. You can see that the
shaft is steel-reinforced and actually has a guard. That way it can be used to
parry weapons without damaging the shaft of the weapon. Now you can see these weapons
in pictures and wood cuttings from the 15th century being used
not only on the battlefield, but in judicial duels– trial by combat, if you will. Now this was a weapon
that respects no armor. It was used by knights who
had both strength and skill. That’s pretty cool. Yes. Now, this intimidating
piece of equipment is the glaive guisarme. Now, glaives were a popular
weapon from the 13th and 14th centuries. Originating in France,
they were usually a single-edged blade
mounted on a pole, sometimes a knife blade or a sword blade. But the glaive guisarme added
this sort of crescent hook onto the back. Now, that allowed a warrior to
either hook someone and pull them towards them,
or to push someone away, or push a ladder
off a castle wall or lift pikes out of the way. And you can see the
size of the blade was enlarged to make a
very large cutting surface. That was brutal, dude. Now, these blades
also had a long socket and metal langet that ran
down the shaft of the weapon. Now, that kept that
shaft from being cut or broken by swords,
axes, other weapons being swung at it. You can see in the
hands of a professional, that is an incredibly
intimidating weapon. That was brutal. So there you go. Some of the deadliest
weapons on “Forged in Fire” used by the strongest
warriors in history. And don’t forget to check
out History’s newest show, “The Strongest Man in
History” Wednesday 10:00/9:00 Central here on History.

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