Today we are happy to reveal an updated and improved version of our popular Nordland Axe. This axe is based on an original found in the Nordland region of Norway in an archeological find that dates to the early Viking age. The Nordic hand axe cannot be separated from the mystique of the Viking Warrior. These feared fighting men used spear, sword and axe as they gained a reputation as solders and adventurers that is still renowned today. This axe would have been a weapon and tool used whether on the farm, on the hunt, in combat or on a voyage of discovery.
This new and improved example is a Peterson Type C style axe with a pronounced hanging beard, nearly straight top and slightly curved cutting edge. While we recently announced this axe would be available in hardened carbon steel we've decided to up the ante even further with a forged, differentially hardened edge and a natural forge-black patina. The black patina is the result of placing the hot axehead in linseed oil, creating a durable historical finish.This axe comes mounted on a stained hickory shaft, custom turned for this piece. The lower end of the haft kicks out slightly with a small toe to seat the hand when swinging this weapon at full length, a detail seen on surviving axe shafts from the period.
Check out this video for details on the improved axe!
Nathan Clough, Ph.D. is Vice President of Arms and Armor and a member of the governing board of The Oakeshott Institute. He is a historical martial artist and a former university professor of cultural geography. He has given presentations on historical arms at events including Longpoint and Combatcon, and presented scholarly papers at, among others, The International Congress on Medieval Studies.
Craig Johnson is the Production Manager of Arms and Armor and Secretary of The Oakeshott Institute. He has taught and published on the history of arms, armor and western martial arts for over 30 years. He has lectured at several schools and Universities, WMAW, HEMAC, 4W, and ICMS at Kalamazoo. His experiences include iron smelting, jousting, theatrical combat instruction and choreography, historical research, European martial arts and crafting weapons and armor since 1985