Ancient Warriors: Nine Deadly Weapons Blast From the Past

Those ancient warriors may not have been the most subtle fighters around, but they they sure had some bad-ass weapons. I guess for the ancients, desperate times called for desperate measures, as you will see from these murderous military weapons.

  1. Triple Morning Star


    This Ancient Weapon known as the Mace comes from the Medieval Age. This weapon was very deadly and consisted of a wood or metal shaft with a mounted head of bronze, copper, wood, or steel. The mace was carried and used by both foot soldiers and Calvary men. Maces were very effective in battle and could puncture even the heaviest of armor. This was a barbaric weapon and left battlefields filled with torture and blood.

  2. Hawaiian Throwing Axe


    This Hawaiian Throwing Axe was a deadly hand held weapon that could be used at both short and long range. This weapon was made out of wood and shark teeth had the power to take men’s limbs off. This weapon was mainly used when opposing Hawaiian armies closed upon each other. They were then thrown at the opposing troops to help soften enemy ranks before close combat. They could also be used in hand to hand combat and had the muscle to rip open skin as if it was butter. This was a very dangerous weapon and is not something you would want to go up against.

  3. Hunga Munga


    The Hunga Munga is an African tribal weapon that is way ahead of its time. It is a handheld weapon and contains a metal pointed blade with a curved back section and separate spike near the handle. This weapon was used in fighting between African tribes and was often times throw in a rotating motion causing deep wounds and even death. Its variation of blades allowed it to be used as more then a weapon. It was used as a tool in farming and even in building structures. It was a great all around tool and has been found all throughout Africa. Today you may have seen the Hunga Munga in the show Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Buffy uses it once in a while to fight off evil demons that she faces.

  4. Throwing Star


    The throwing star known as the shuriken which means “a dagger hidden in a palm” were used and invented by the Japanese. The stars had much variation in the shape; some were shaped like a star and thrown with spin, yet others were needlelike and thrown like a throwing dagger. These daggers couldn’t penetrate armor, but the ninjas, who used them, usually didn’t fight armored opponents. Venom was normally used with the shuriken.

  5. Caltrop


    The Caltrop is a weapon made up of two or more sharp spikes or spines arranged so that one of them points upward from a stable base. Caltrops serve to slow down the proceeding of horses, war elephants, and human troops. It was said to be particularly effective against the soft feet of camels. These were very painful if stepped on and were spread all throughout battle fields. They also were deadly because if stepped on it would cause a bad infection that would cause a slow agonizing death. They also have been used in modern times. In the Vietnam War the Vietcong put them into booby traps. If an American soldier was punctured by one he died from infection almost 90% of the time.

  6. Crossbow Pistol


    This 17th Century Crossbow was way ahead of its time and is very cool. This crossbows look like an early form of a pistol and was very powerful. This hand held crossbow was both accurate and effective but it just was too hard to reload. Because of this it was not used very often in battle and was used more for target practice. Another problem with this weapon was making the arrows which was to time consuming especially if they were just going to get lost in battle. Overall this weapon was still badass and really shows what type of technology and ideas the 17th Century had.

  7. Trebuchet


    A trebuchet is basically a high powered catapult and had many uses in ancient times. Mainly used as a weapon it had enough power to break through castles and destroy towns. It was first used in the 16th Century. Rocks, dead horses, dead people, and dead animals were all used as ammo. In the 16th and 17th Century when plagues and diseases were looming over civilizations plagued bodies were thrown by the trebuchet into enemy territory. The bodies decomposed passing the plague to the enemies slowly killing them. This is one of the first forms of biological warfare.]

  8. Ancient Rocket Launcher


    In the 14th century, the Chinese invented rocket-launchers. These were weapons which shot arrows with rockets attached near the tip into the air toward the enemy. Also in the 14th century, multi-stage rockets were made. When the rockets near the front of the device burnt out, they lit fuses for the second-stage rockets at the back. The bombs the Chinese used in the 17th century were made of gunpowder wrapped in paper and had a fuse covered in gunpowder.

  9. Ancient Flame-Thrower


    The Chinese invented the continuous flame-thrower in the tenth century. In the picture above we see the tank standing on four legs, with the pump and device above it. Because the Chinese invention of a double-acting Piston-bellows was used with this device, a continuous stream of flame could be emitted. The metal used was brass. The Flame-Thrower was used in naval or boat combat and allowed the Chinese to easily set enemy ships on fire and sink them on the spot. It was a great technology and has been used ever since.

Christopher Columbus and the Genocide of the Taino Nation

Obsessed with finding a sea rout to Asia and the Far East, Columbus set out on his ‘Enterprise of the Indies’ in 1492, backed by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain.  However, instead of finding a rout to the rich trade in the East, Columbus and his crew discovered the New World, and soon set about subjugating and murdering the local population and removing the vast wealth from the land.

Columbus discovering the New World.  Image Source

A small colony was established in Hispaniola consisting of thirty-nine of his crew, the rest returned to Spain with Columbus along with gold, spices and natives taken as slaves to be given as gifts for his royal patrons.

The following year, he led a second expedition comprising of seventeen large ships and one and half thousand new colonists, arriving in the Americas a month later.  By the time he got back to Hispaniola, his men there had been slaughtered by the locals and a second colony was founded.

Columbus punished the local tribe, known as the Taino, severely.  He enslaved many and executed many more; according to Ward Churchill, former professor of ethnic studies at the University of Colorado, by 1496, the population had been reduced from as many as eight million to around three million.

On his third expedition, he explored the region before returning to Hispaniola in 1498 where he had left his brothers in charge, Diego and Bartholomew.  Conditions there were in decline so he stepped up the terror campaign against the Taino, ruling with an iron hand causing resentment from the colonists and local chiefs alike.  Complaints of his brutality got back to the Spanish monarchs and in 1500 they sent a Chief Justice to bring him and his brothers back to Spain in chains.

Columbus in chains.  Image Source

However he was released on his arrival and allowed a fourth and final expedition, which he conducted with the same brutality as previous ones.  By the time he finally left in 1504, the Taino had been reduced to around 100,000 people arguably making Columbus a war criminal by today’s standards and  guilty of committing some of the worst atrocities against another race in history.

Some were killed directly as punishments for ‘crimes’ such as not paying tribute to the invaders.  Many who could not or would not pay had their hands cut off and were left to bleed to death.  Columbus and his men are documented by the chronicles of Las Casas, know as Brev’sima relaci-n,  to have partaken in mass hangings, roasting people on spits, burnings at the stake and even hacking young children to death and feeding them to dogs as punishment for the most minor of crimes. The Spanish masters massacred the natives, sometimes hundreds at a time for sport, making bets on who could split a man in two, or cut a head off in one blow.

Taino people being tortured by the Spanish.   Image Source

Defenders of Columbus argue that a large amount of the victims were killed by disease however they fail to recognize that most of these diseases were caused by poor living conditions in forced labour camps.  Deprived of their crops and fields, many fell prey to dysentery and typhus, were worked to death or were left to starve to death.

After his death his terrible legacy would live on, by 1514, a census showed only 22,000 Taino remained alive.  By 1542 there were only 200 remaining and after they were considered extinct, as was becoming more and more the case throughout the Caribbean basin.

In around fifty years Columbus and those that followed him had all but eliminated a population of around fifteen million people.  This process was just the start and an estimated 100 million people were wiped out by Europeans in the so called ‘civilisation’ of the Western Hemisphere making the discovery of the New World the start of what was arguably the worst case of mass genocide in history.