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MACE

The mace was truly one of the most ferocious weapons of the Medieval Ages. Simple in construction, it was a wooden handle approximately 12 - 18 inches in length. Mounted on the end was an iron or steel housing that supported 4 - 6 metal fins. The weapon weighed anywhere from 4 to 6 pounds and was used to smash holes in the most sophisticated forms of armor. One solid blow from this weapon could outright kill. The counterbalance of the weapon provided an extra amount of force when swung. It was actually more effective against an armored knight than a standard sword.

CROSSBOW

Believed to have been invented by the Italians during the middle of the 12th Century, the crossbow was a marked improvement over the longbow, shortbow and composite bows of the day. As armor improved, standard arrows found little success in penetrating the protective wear of the knights and infantrymen. The crossbow was designed to fire a single projectile (called a bolt) with tremendous force. Usually the bolts were tipped with iron or steel. Unlike an arrow a crossbow bolt did not use feathers on the end for stabilization or guidance. The sheer torque from the draw wires propelled the bolt at such speed that it became a simple 'aim and fire' weapon.
The draw wire was so tight and taut that it was impossible to pull it back by hand. Therefore, a crank was installed on the side of the crossbow. The traditional means of preparing the weapon to be fired was stepping on a plate attached to the front of the crossbow, holding the weapon alongside the body and then manually turning the crank to draw back the wire. Some crossbows took two people to prepare. Once the wire was drawn back it would lock into place. Then the bolt could be loaded onto the guiding rail, the weapon could be aimed and a simple trigger mechanism lifted the lock and released the wire.
Though effective against most armors, the bulky weapon was highly inaccurate at long ranges.