Javelin

Posted: July 3, 2012 in Bred to the Wilderness

I have a hankering to build and practice with an old-timey javelin. I have a light and compact “framea” spear head on order from Kult of Athena.

Looks like the ancient Greeks built their hunting javelins out of cornel wood, a kind of extremely dense dogwood, or elder wood for the sporting model. I have an ashwood shaft that I can use.

It looks like they anciently wrapped a leather thong around the shaft at about the balance point. It unwound as the spear was thrown, giving the shaft a spin, stabilizing it. I’d like to try that out.

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Comments
  1. kortoso says:

    The term comes from Tacitus, reporting on the Germanic barbarians of his time:
    “They carry a spear (framea is their name for it), with a narrow and short head, but so sharp and easy to wield that the same weapon serves, according to circumstances, for close or distant conflict.”

  2. kortoso says:

    From The Hour of the Dragon, a Conan novel by Robert E. Howard:

    “I saw myself in a pantherskin loin-clout, throwing my spear at the mountain beasts.”

    You were wondering how long it would take before I got to Conan! Ha!

    Assuming that this is the common Cimmerian method of hunting, knowing that Conan considers archery to be effeminate, how close would a Cimmerian need to get to the “mountain beasts” in order to “make meat” with a throwing spear. Here we are assuming that he’s not talking about an atlatl!

    So I have my new spearpoint and I am fitting it to my ash spear, also definitely whittling the spear down from Saxon thrusting spear to a lighter framea.

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