THE HERLEMIN ("DOUBLE-ENDED HATCHET")

DESCRIPTION - USAGE - FIGHTING STYLE - ORIGIN/HISTORY


The Herlemin is also known as the Double-Ended Hatchet and jokingly referred to as a "Darn-vicious Quarterstaff". It is a melee weapon like the common quarterstaff, however, the Herlemin is usually only used be trained fighter as the weapon has heavy axe blades on each end and is quite difficult to handle.

The Double-Ended Hatchet A Heavy Axe Herlemin

View picture in full size Image description. A pair of Herlemins - a "regular" double-ended hatchet and a second polearm featuring heavy axes. Picture drawn by Jonael Tomeskrift.

Description. This melee weapon has many different appearances, but a few things are true about all Herlemins. It consists of a shaft of either wood or metal with two small axe blades, one on each end. Both are oriented in the same direction. The staff part is as long as a normal walking staff. Some are wrapped with leather in the middle, and others are just plain wood or steel. Many also have either small spikes on the other end of the blade, or a blunt length of steel. A few fighters that have amazing strength prefer double-ended axes on each end, but this is much harder to control without hitting themselves. Return to the top

Usage. The Herlemin can only be used by those strong enough to wield it, for even a single axe would make it difficult; with two it requires quite a bit of strength. Humans use it often, but only people who can afford it. Crude versions may be used by those tribes that cannot work metal as well, or by those who cannot afford a sleek version. These handle almost as effectively as a normal one however. Just as a staff used by someone who had found a perfectly straight piece of wood and honed it could be beaten by someone with a slightly bowed length that is just as strong. It can be used in duels as a weapon of choice, but has no traditions associated with it, being a fairly new invention. It has only been used commonly in the last hundred years or so of Caelereth history.
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Fighting Style. The weapon is used in the same manner as a usual quarterstaff, thus the reference. Basic strokes are generally aimed towards the sides of the opponent, and as soon as one stroke is completed another can be begun using the opposite end. Though apt in defending the upper body, the Herlemin is slower to block shots to the feet and legs, so a wielder of this weapon must be quick on his/her toes. The Herlemin has a longer reach than many weapons, so one does not always have to get too close to give fatal blows.
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Origin/History. One can not be sure about who "invented" this weapon. Probably a blacksmith in some obscure region made it to combat the heavy use of axes in battle, and it spread quickly as a good counter to that strategy. It is used mainly in the northern part of Sarvonia, and on other northern continents.
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