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Middle Ages - Lords and Ladies

Description of Caltrops
The weapons used during the Middle Ages include the Caltrops. The description of the Caltrops which provides basic facts and information about the weapon is as follows:

  • Caltrops - This form of weapon  was device with four metal points arranged so that when any three are on the ground the fourth spike projects upward

  • The objective for using this weapon was as an effective hazard to the hooves of horses
  • The word "caltrop" comes from Old English word 'calcatrippe' and the Latin word 'calcitrapa' meaning "foot trap"
  • The method for using this weapon was to toss a handful of Caltrops at a targeted location and spread the small metal spikes over a large area
  • The caltrop was effective in damaging the hooves of horses and slowing their movement
  • The Medieval horse, called a Destrier was the favored horses of knights in the Middle Ages and any means of combating this fearful animal were used by their opponents

The Middle Ages was an extremely violent era in history featuring battles in both Europe and the Holy Land when the crusades, and the crusaders who fought them, were numerous. Feudal Lords and Knights used such weapons as the Caltrops in different types of warfare. The quest for power led to invasions of lands and territories which had to be fought for. Siege warfare, waged to win a castle or a walled town or city, was a frequent occurrence during the Middle Ages. Warfare during the Middle Ages, or Medieval era called for a variety of weapon expertise. Knights and men-at-arms ( foot soldiers, or archers ) used different types of weapons. The Caltrops was predominantly used by a Foot Soldiers. The weapons used were dictated according to status and position. The weapons, armor and horse of the Knight were extremely expensive - the fighting power of just one knight was worth 10 ordinary soldiers.

Middle Ages Weapons
Middle Ages Index

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