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epsilon axe
Topic Started: Mar 14 2010, 09:52 PM (3,704 Views)
Dan Howard
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The epsilon axe was one of the earlier weapons to be used in battle and it seems that the khopesh evolved from it. There is some dispute as to how it handed and whether it was more of a chopper or a slicer. I was wondering whether a reconstruction has been tested to see how it handles.
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Dan Howard
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Thread resurrection

I've put together a little illustration to show how the khopesh might have evolved from the epsilon axe using surviving examples.

Bump to the original question. Has anyone made a reconstruction of the epsilon axe to see how it functions?
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Scott Woodruff
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I made a rough reconstruction of such an axe when I was about 12 years old. The way it is lashed to the haft without sockets makes it a rather flimsy weapon, and the blade would not stay stable with a hard chop. On the other hand, it was wicked in the draw cut. It is easy to see how the Kopesh was a considerable advancement.
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LuciŽn Olinga
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Is it your own theory that it evolved in that way or did you read it somewhere before?
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Scott Woodruff
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The theory that the Khopesh evolved from the epsilon axe is pretty widely accepted. I do not know where the theory originated, but it is mentioned in numerous books including (I think) Oakeshott's "Archaeology of Weapons." Actually, I think it may have been Burton who first suggested the kinship.
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Sean Manning
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The trouble is that the set of people who have trained in axe-fighting is small, and the set of people who have an epsilon axe is small, so the intersection is probably tiny. I wouldn't have been shocked if it included one of the BACers though!
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Scott Woodruff
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The problem with training with axes is that they are seriously nasty weapons and hard to play nice with. I had a nasty broken finger a few months ago from sparring with an opponent wielding a small, blunt handaxe made for Viking reenactment. I would rather get hit with a blunt sword any day!
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Sean Manning
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From my perspective, it doesn't matter so much because there are almost no documented axe or mace styles (I would classify the European pollaxe stuff in the common martial arts category of "staff weapons"). Learning a universal martial art should let you figure out a martially sound approach with any weapon, but I'm far from being good enough at the one I study to do that.
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Steven Blakely
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The secret with the axe is it is really a chopping weapon. you may want to take moves you learn from the sword and only use moves whree chopping is invovled.
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Jeroen Zuiderwijk
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Steven Blakely,Dec 5 2011
10:08 PM
The secret with the axe is it is really a chopping weapon. you may want to take moves you learn from the sword and only use moves whree chopping is invovled.

There's no chopping with swords. Actually, there are a lot of instances where you don't actually chop with axes either. Even axes often work more effective when you slice with them rather then chop, my pulling the edge through the material as you cut. Only when actually felling a tree or splitting a log it's mostly chopping. But when whittling a piece to take of slivers of wood, you cut a lot more rather then chop. Epsilon axes definately are cutting tools. The long edges are meant to slice. The narrow duckbill axes are piercing axes, with use the same motion as chopping, but working more like bronze halberds then axes.
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