The Different Types of Viking Throwing Axes

The Different Types of Viking Throwing Axes 1

The History of Viking Throwing Axes

The Vikings were feared warriors from Scandinavia, famous for their brutal raids and conquests across Europe during the 8th to the 11th centuries. They were experts in warfare and utilized a variety of weapons, including the throwing axe.

The Different Types of Viking Throwing Axes 2

Viking throwing axes were not only used in battle, but also for hunting, chopping, and crafting. They were typically made of iron or steel and had a short handle, no longer than 60cm, which made them easier to throw with precision.

The Types of Viking Throwing Axes

There were a variety of Viking throwing axes, each designed for different purposes. Here are some of the most common types:

The Dane Axe

The Dane axe, also known as a long-handled battle axe, was the largest and heaviest throwing axe. It had a long handle which made it useful for both throwing and melee combat. This weapon was designed to be used by elite Viking warriors, known as berserkers, who were famous for their ferocity on the battlefield.

The Francisca

The Francisca was a smaller throwing axe, with a longer, curved blade and a shorter handle. This axe was developed by the Franks and was widely used by the Vikings. It was designed to be thrown overhand, and its curved shape made it easier to stick into armor or shields.

The Bearded Axe

The bearded axe was a versatile throwing axe that had a blade shape similar to a crescent moon, with a tapered edge that widened near the handle. This gave it a unique appearance and made it useful for both throwing and chopping. The bearded axe was commonly used by Viking farmers for everyday tasks.

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Viking Throwing Axes

Like any weapon, Viking throwing axes had their advantages and disadvantages:


  • Portable: Viking throwing axes were relatively small and lightweight, making them easy to carry into battle or while hunting.
  • Precise: Their short handle made them easier to throw with accuracy, and their flexible blades made them more likely to stick into an opponent or target.
  • Multi-Purpose: Viking throwing axes had more than one use, making them versatile tools for both combat and everyday activities like chopping wood or preparing food.
  • Disadvantages

  • Close Range: Due to their short handles, Viking throwing axes required the user to be fairly close to their target or enemy, which left them vulnerable to counterattacks or ambushes.
  • Difficult to Retrieve: If a Viking throwing axe missed its target, it could be difficult to retrieve in the middle of combat.
  • One Time Use: Unlike a sword or a shield, Viking throwing axes were typically used only once, which meant a warrior had to have a large supply of them on hand for extended battles.
  • The Legacy of Viking Throwing Axes

    Viking throwing axes were more than just weapons. They were symbols of pride and honor for the Viking warriors who wielded them, and they played a significant role in Viking culture and mythology. The Viking god of thunder, Thor, was commonly depicted with a throwing axe, further cementing its importance in Viking society.

    Today, Viking throwing axes are still used in axe-throwing competitions around the world. They have also inspired a new generation of blacksmiths and craftsmen who painstakingly recreate ancient designs using traditional techniques. Continue your learning journey by accessing this recommended external content. Review this helpful resource, you’ll encounter useful knowledge and extra details on the topic.


    Viking throwing axes were an important part of Viking culture and history. They remain a fascinating weapon to study, and their legacy lives on in modern-day competitions and exhibitions. Although they may seem primitive compared to modern weapons, there is no denying the skill and precision required to wield a Viking throwing axe in battle.

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