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Basic Information

An axe (or ax) is a chopping implement - some are intended as tools, others as weapons, but most can serve as either.

As a tool, the axe was incredibly important in changing the landscape of the world as it was the tool that enabled humans to fell trees effectively for the first time. Not only did this allow them to clear land for agriculture, but to obtain timber for construction - it's a key piece of kit for settlers and pioneers of all kinds and with that and a knife a skilled man is all set for the frontier.

In combat, the axe is relatively easy to use (although not as easy as it looks) and performs reasonably well against armour, given that it focuses quite a bit of mass and leverage on a fairly short cutting edge. It is also cheap (compared to a sword) and that, combined with its dual-use status has made it fairly popular historically. In cultures who have difficulty forging blades, the axe is often a top line weapon.

Against this, the axe is a very aggressive weapon - it is next to impossible to parry with and tends to commit the wielder to an attack, making it not much of a weapon for the faint hearted. It also tends to lack reach and, as a short bladed slashing weapon, can sometimes have difficulty acheiving a definitive kill.

Various historical designs have created purely military axes, some of them throwable, with handles of various lengths, different designs of blades and an assortment of cutting heads. Some designs tread the boundary between axe, military pick and mace.

In general, a smaller axe, especially a one handed one may be termed a hatchet, some of which are further designed as thrown weapons.

Military Axe Types:



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