Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Death by fork!

Eating, loving and fighting - three universal elements of human nature.

We know, that a lot of fighting has occured because of love. But that there is also a very direct connection between fighting and eating - and now with new evidence - is a fact that is new to me.

We are not talking about mixing up eating and fighting in the sense of eating your enemies or having a feast after a fight. We are talking weaponry here.

Take a look at this BATTLE FORK - and I'm not kidding.


This object is actually labelled "a battle fork" on an archaeological exhibition. It comes from a grave in Masów, Poland and is dated to the Pre-roman Iron Age.

So here we have it. Weapons derived from cutlery. Or what ever came first. We all know that knives may be used both for killing and eating, but a battle fork, that's something new. At least to me. Maybe I'm just a total armoury-ignorante. Maybe battle forks are really one of the most common weapons in history - only it has skipped my antenna some how.


Personally, I think I'd prefer death by knife rather than fork.

So if you know about loads of battle forks - any period - or other cutlery-based armour - and how to use it perhaps(?!), please enlighten me.

5 comments:

Alun said...

They do say that civilisation is defined as the peoples who invented the fork as well as the knife :)

Christina said...

you're right indeed.
It has since been brought to my knowledge that similar forks exist in the danish bog find Vimose, but they are not labelled as battle forks.
Next time, I'll try carving a roast with a sword.

archaeozoo said...

I'm fascinated. I've never heard of anything like these before.

Maju said...

Fork like in pitchfork, right? I understand that the eating fork was only introduced in the Middle Ages, an ariistocratic refinement, though it may have older roots in West Asia. Before people ate with their hands and some bread mostly, as it's still done in many places around the world.

Also a pitchfork seems to have the right size and it has definitively served as improvised weapon in many peasant revolts.

The image is certainly like the typical traditional pitchforks used to move hay around. Nowadays they mostly have three or four teeth but old ones often had just two.

Is it in steel or wooden?

Christina said...

No, it's the kind of fork used for carving meat or picking up large volumes of meat from a hot place. It's of Iron. Probably very useful in battle, surely but I doubt that it's primary function is for battles.
As you can see it is dated to the pre-roman Iron Age. They did not use Iron forks for hay then.