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Feyn
Sunday, January 22nd, 2012, 02:49 AM
This may be a stupid question but bear with me. In the film "the 13th warrior" the viking warriors encounter an opponent who uses a weapon that looks like a bear claw mounted on a stick (who has seen that movie knows what i mean).
Now i was just watching grimm, and saw nearly the exact same weapon they used in the 13th warrior, and someone says this would be a germanic weapon from the early 10th century.
Now my question, was there really such a weapon used by germanics or celts ? I found it pretty strange that both the film and the series would use such an exotic weapon and both claim it to be germanic, thatīs why i was wondering if it had some historic background I was not aware of. Those 2 weapons looked way too much alike for this to be a coincidence. Or had the series simply the idea from the 13th warrior ?

GewaltigeAufgabe
Sunday, January 22nd, 2012, 04:09 AM
I have been doing extensive research on the 13'th Warrior, and have actually found out that the "cannibals" were supposedly an almost extinct race of pre-homo-sapiens, cave men. Also do not look at the thirteenth warrior for historical accuracy. There are many inconsistencies within the movie. Some of the most noticeable of these was the choices for the viking armors and weapons. They jumped from years such as 1560 to up to 4000 years ago for armor, and were from many different cultures. One instance was the Viking who stayed in the caverns to hold off the cannibals descent after the others in our heroes' band. He had a Renaissance suit of armor and helmet on, along with a battle fork of the 15-1600's. Another viking, one who was javelin'd to death in the defense of the town, carried a Nordic great-sword, but wore a Roman gladiator helm of antiquity. These do not line up in what is supposed to be a Viking settled trade-route city in the 900's of lower Russia. Oh and to top it all off, the entire movie was all fiction. Even though it was based off of the Arab poet's real account of the Rus vikings, this only lasted for the first chapters of the movie. The realistic account probably ended once Ibn Fadlan came upon the viking camp. So to answer your question, no the claw-weapon was not of Germanic origin, had anything to do with Germanic peoples. It was a product of fiction paired with the mind of a brilliant writer and director(s).

EQ Fighter
Sunday, January 22nd, 2012, 04:43 AM
I think you have to look at this from the movie makers position.

Their objective is to evoke a Feeling of history, and not to be historically accurate. I have seen many movies even ones concerning relatively recent history where they deliberately miss represent a historical surrounding simply to create an appeal to a modern audience.

When you are dealing with very obscure topics such as the Vikings, who are poorly recorded in history, the issue becomes compounded.

Movies ALL OF THEM are about entertainment, not history. At best you should view them as romanticized views of history.

Feyn
Sunday, January 22nd, 2012, 05:25 AM
Ob boy, of course i donīt expect a movie, or a tv series for that matter, to be historically correct. OF COURSE i am aware that EVERY movie and every tv series is full of inaccuracies.Had i seen this weapon only in this one movie, i wouldnt even have given it a second glance. But that a tv series and a movie, that are entirely unrelated, and lie over 12 years apart mention the exact same weapon, apparently used the exact same time period, and in the exact same country IN BOTH made me curious if there is some historical background i am not aware of.
As for the weapons of the vikings : to have a smith make a weapon for you was something very expensive at the time, and that goes even much more for any kind of armory. So i think that especially poorer vikings wielded whatever they could get their hands on, or whatever was aquired during a raid. Of course they couldnīt have had weapons that where developed later in history, but weapons from another culture, or really old weapons ? I would even expect them to have such weaponry.

EQ Fighter
Sunday, January 22nd, 2012, 06:19 AM
Ob boy, of course i donīt expect a movie, or a tv series for that matter, to be historically correct. OF COURSE i am aware that EVERY movie and every tv series is full of inaccuracies.
LOL!
No need to be an Ass about the situation.



But that a tv series and a movie, that are entirely unrelated, and lie over 12 years apart mention the exact same weapon, apparently used the exact same time period, and in the exact same country IN BOTH made me curious if there is some historical background i am not aware of.

Don't see how a prop, used in two movies, has any relevance, there are many props that move, form movie to movie and are stored in Prop shops for the next movie.




As for the weapons of the vikings : to have a smith make a weapon for you was something very expensive at the time, and that goes even much more for any kind of armory. So i think that especially poorer vikings wielded whatever they could get their hands on, or whatever was acquired during a raid.

I’m guessing the sword was the most expensive and prized weapon. And High Carbon steel which is the best for blades would have been hard to come by. It seems to be overused in regard to movies for effect, but in reality it is more likely that three sided clubs like those used by the Germans against Romans in the Teutoburg Forest were a more common weapon. A very cheap, and vary easy to build weapon, that could be used to outfit and army quickly.

SpearBrave
Sunday, January 22nd, 2012, 10:01 AM
I’m guessing the sword was the most expensive and prized weapon. And High Carbon steel which is the best for blades would have been hard to come by. It seems to be overused in regard to movies for effect, but in reality it is more likely that three sided clubs like those used by the Germans against Romans in the Teutoburg Forest were a more common weapon. A very cheap, and vary easy to build weapon, that could be used to outfit and army quickly.

Swords were not rare judging by the amount of them found, but I think the more common weapons would have been spears, axes, the seax ( a long knife ), and perhaps hammers.

Further reading about the seax :

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seax



The Germanics of the Viking era were known for their iron and steel making abilities. The bad thing about iron and steel is that it rust in the ground fairly quick and it is reusable and can be made into other objects with simple tools. I am sure you have heard the expression of '' swords into plow shares'' this might be literally true in many cases as to what happened to many early Germanic weapons. While iron and steel were very valuable at the time, it was still not rare.

Irmingot
Sunday, January 22nd, 2012, 11:57 AM
Please forget that the movie "The 13th warrior" ever existed. I can hardly think of a more embarrassing movie heh.... If you actually watch it, do it for the laughing matter of it, and save yourself the effort of trying to find some inspiration or actual historical facts in it.

And no, there have been no "bear claws" around. The inspiration for this is probably equal parts Marvel's Wolverine, some weird Rajput weaponry, and the climbing devices used by feudal Japanese Ninjas.



I have been doing extensive research on the 13'th Warrior, and have actually found out that the "cannibals" were supposedly an almost extinct race of pre-homo-sapiens, cave men.

Any sources for this? And anything suggesting that the script writers knew just about anything more than a few lines from Ibn Fadlans descriptions of the Rus? ;)
I have read quite a lot of books, and never ever come across anything giving us a hint of some pre-homo sapien cannibal tribes surviving into the Viking Age. There are some evidence supporting that paleolithic tribes of Scandinavia ate human brains, as a part of a ritual sacrifice - but that's about it. They are also Homo Sapiens, and not some sort of unknown proto-humans.

renownedwolf
Sunday, January 22nd, 2012, 04:51 PM
Historical accuracy and other things aside, 13th Warrior is ultimately based upon Beowulf. It's an entertaining action movie which does have a certain fatalistic heroism that should appeal to anybody of our ancestry. I defy anybody not to feel something when the death prayer is spoken.

Feyn
Tuesday, January 24th, 2012, 05:57 AM
@ EQ fighter : yea sorry, i was really a bit pissy there. It was a long and annoying day that day, then it can happen i get easily frustrated if i feel completely misunderstood ;) I should have handled the answer better.

GewaltigeAufgabe
Tuesday, January 24th, 2012, 06:25 AM
Please forget that the movie "The 13th warrior"
I have read quite a lot of books, and never ever come across anything giving us a hint of some pre-homo sapien cannibal tribes surviving into the Viking Age. There are some evidence supporting that paleolithic tribes of Scandinavia ate human brains, as a part of a ritual sacrifice - but that's about it. They are also Homo Sapiens, and not some sort of unknown proto-humans.

You misinterpret my message. The movie was made to dazzle and show sword-clanging special effects. Of course there weren't any cavemen in the viking age.

"Once again, the book is fiction. If you read the book or pay attention to the movie, you quickly notice that the "wendol" are supposed to be some sort of pre-human or early human, probably Neanderthals. Aside from their appearance, there's the Clan of the Cave Bear thing going on with the bear symbols, there are Lascaux-like cave-paintings, and the Venus of Willendorf goddess images which all should give you a clue that these are supposed to be "cavemen" with appalling dietary preferences."

http://www.vikinganswerlady.com/ibn_fdln.shtml

""13th Warrior"'ish Cavemen / Neanderthals
Some Vikings in the far north of Scandinavia would still have trouble with primitive Cavemen or surviving Neanderthals raiding there camps.
Not historical correct ofcourse, this is still acceptable for my taste, without being too much fantasy."


http://studiotomahawk.freeforums.org/13th-warrior-ish-cavemen-neanderthals-t488.html




"This group is sent on a hero's quest to the north. Ahmad ibn Fadlan is taken along, as the thirteenth member of their group, to bring good luck. There they battle with the 'mist-monsters', or 'wendol', a relict group of Neanderthals who go to battle wearing bear skins like the berserkers found in the original Beowulf story."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eaters_of_the_Dead


"I have read quite a lot of books, and never ever come across anything giving us a hint of some pre-homo sapien cannibal tribes"

Apparently you didn't search very hard at all.

Irmingot
Tuesday, January 24th, 2012, 08:11 AM
Apparently you didn't search very hard at all.

So, instead of sounding like an emotionally hurt patronizing professor, where have you found anything at all, suggesting that there were some sort of proto-humanoid cavemen left in Scandinavia during the Viking age? I am not bringing it up because I want to pick some Internet fight with you, but because I am seriously interested.
Mind you, the Neanderthals became extinct about 30 000 years ago, at least there are no finds suggesting they survived longer than this. And in Scandinavia, Neanderthal finds are indeed rare as whole. The last time I heard about such finds, was when reading about Varggrottan in Finland - and it isn't even certain what "breed" of humanoids this is a matter about.

Talking like you do, is precisely as scientific as saying Sasquatch and the Yeti are probably remains of proto-humanoids, possible - but not likely at all. So in all honesty - I am really curious, where have you found anything at all, about pre-homo sapien cannibal tribes (or such tribes in any form, cannibal or not), surviving into the Viking Age?