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Twilight of the Kings

The spatha – a new weapon

The spatha (Latin ›broad blade‹ ) is a double-edged, parallel-sided cutting sword used by both Romans and Germanic tribes. In the Germanic world it was primarily a rider's weapon, which is also reflected in the short hilt. A low weight of one kilogram enabled the sword to be wielded quickly. The Thuringian sword makers mastered damascening and thus produced hard-elastic blades with partly decorative patterns. A new feature was the cross-guard, which prevented the hand from slipping forward during the thrust. Only wealthy people could afford the corresponding costs for these excellent weapons.


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