Falchion is a medieval lightweight, thin, and quick slashing sword. Like most other medieval swords, falchion has also been used in wars and battles. The lightweight and thin design of the sword didn’t make it the primary weapon for the soldiers on the battlefields, rather make it a better second choice.
Also, some other men in the battle used the sword as their third primary choice. One rumor is very common regarding falchion and that is, they are most often compared to machetes. But the reality is, falchion is lighter and thinner than machetes.
How does a falchion look like
Falchion is a single-handed sword and is designed with a single-edged blade. However, there is a slight difference between the blade of medieval age falchion and European falchion. Unlike medieval single-edged blades, the European falchion came with a short back edge blade design.
The blade of this sword isn’t straight; rather most versions of falchion had a slightly curved blade. The curvy structure reached the pointed top of the blade. However, some other versions of falchion had some uneven shapes and designs as well.
Although it is a lower quality sword compared to the primary swords used on the battlefield, it had a similar hilt design of course. The crossguard in the hilt area provided the user the same feeling of holding a double-edged upper-class sword.
With the crossguard hilt design, a falchion occupies the design of an arming sword. As most versions of falchions have curved blades, in some rare cases they also came with a straighter blade. So overall, the whole design of the falchion makes it look like a high-end word that the knights and soldiers use in the medieval war fields.
Pros and cons of falchion
The swords are liked by most medieval knights as their favorite secondary weapon and also most medieval soldiers considered it as a lower-end sword. It means this sword has both good and bad sides. Now let’s break into the good and bad sides of falchion by discussing the pros and cons.
- It is a lightweight sword, which can be easily carried in wars.
- According to most users and makers, a falchion consists of the combined power of an ax and sword that helps the user to produce powerful blows.
- The sword has a good bit of defensive capacity as well alongside the offensive use.
- It can be used in close contact fights and through the pointed tip the user can thrust inside the opponent.
- The sharpened, curved blade, a falchion can easily cut and slice the target.
- As the weight provides an advantage to the user, it also has a disadvantage. A lighter, single-edged blade can’t produce powerful blows as a double-edged, weighted blade can.
- One main reason behind using it as the secondary weapon is the length. Although it’s not completely on the shorter side, it is not enough lengthy for use in wars.
- If the rival has a longer sword than falchion, it might turn out risky for the soldier saving him from the deadliest blows even though he can use it as a defensive weapon as well.
How many types of falchions are there
According to the researchers and most historians, there are mainly two types of falchions, Cleaver and Cusped.
This is one of the few versions in history that survived. It is more like a large bladed machete, which can be used for chopping. But the blade used in it was thinner and it was only 1.2 mm thick.
The point of the blade had a slight taper leading near the edge before dropping into the secondary level. It was mostly used in the 13th and 14th centuries.
Cusped falchion is mostly inspired by the Turko Mongol sabers. It was also used in the 13th century for the first time. Unlike most falchion versions, this one had a straight blade with a pointed tip. Like most falchions, it weighed around 2 pounds and it was 37.6 inches long approximately.
How long is a falchion
Whether a falchion comes with a curved blade or a straight blade, the length remains almost the same every time. The length of the sword ranges from 37 to 40 inches. However, the blade itself measures from 31 to 34 inches approximately.
So one is sure from the length of falchion is that they are neither a short sword nor a long sword. Their length is enough to use as the secondary weapon by the knights on the battlefields. And as they consist of a lightweight and thinner blade, it’s easier and convenient for carrying.
The thinner and lightweight blade allows the user to slice, slash, and cut through the limbs of the opponent’s body parts. It also has a pointed tip at the bottom of the blade, which also makes it a suitable weapon for thrusting.
While holding a falchion, the medieval knights didn’t have to worry about reaching the target because of the adequate length. And talking about the handle of the sword, it was around 4 to 6 inches with a crossguard hilt. This length of the handle makes it a perfect one for single-handed usage.
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How heavy is a falchion
Falchion is not on the heavier side of medieval swords. According to historians, different falchions weigh around 1 to 2 pounds or 0.45 to 0.90 kg. The makers used steel and iron to design different versions of falchion and made it a favorable one for the knights.
The lightweight design of the sword allows the easy carriage to the battlefield, and any soldier can easily take it out to thrust into the opponent. While they provide a good bit of reach, it is also a nice choice for close contact fights.
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What is falchion used for
The length, sword weight, and design made this sword an incredible choice for the knights on the battlefield as their most liked secondary weapon. The length is enough for a sword to reach the opponent even standing at a distance. It can easily cut, slice, and slash the target with great efficiency.
Although it is mostly known as a slashing and slicing weapon, the pointed tip in the blade makes it an ideal one for thrusting as well. It doesn't matter whether the version of the falchion has a curved or straight blade, it will have a pointed tip designed at the end of the blade.
In close contact fights, the pointed tip can be efficiently used as the thrusting point. It allowed the medieval soldiers to defeat their enemies by stabbing the weapon inside their bodies. Except for the length and design, the weight also offers something good to the users.
Due to its thinner design and use of lightweight materials in the construction, falchion proved to be a lightweight sword. And a lightweight sword can be easily carried on the battlefield as a backup sword.
History of falchion
Falchion is a medieval age sword, which was used by the knight and men at arms in the battlegrounds. The sword was used from the 13th to 16th centuries. The knights used falchion as their secondary, whereas the men at arms used these swords as their third primary weapon.
Although falchion was supposed to be a lower-grade weapon on the battlefields in the medieval age, it was also liked for some reasons. And I don’t think you are not aware of the reasons.