The English Bill by Cold Steel has a head of 1055 high carbon steel that has been blackened. Its axe-like blade, pick and spear-tip are sharpened – they are moderately sharp. Its accompanying pole is crafted of stained and varnished ash wood. This polearm ships unassembled to lower shipping costs; the head is secured to the tapered shaft with a pair of wood screws which are included.
It is polearms such as the bill that started to tilt the favor of the late medieval battlefield to blocks of disciplined infantry over cavalry which had dominated in earlier centuries. Weapons such as bills and other polearms with stout spikes and hooks could topple cavalrymen from their mounts, leaving them vulnerable to waiting infantrymen.
While pikes grew in popularity over shorter polearms on the continent, the English preferred to use their Bills in combination with longbowmen in conflicts. The bill derives from an agricultural tool and its military version was simple in form, yet effective. It has a strong axe-like edge and a forward curved hook. A spear-like spike finishes the weapon. The hook was not only useful for defeating cavalry – a skilled billman could use it to pull away shields and to hook and drag down opponents, pinning them in place for a fellow billman to deliver a fateful chop or thrust. With techniques such as this a block of disciplined billmen could literally hack and chop their way through lesser foes.
Please Note: Our photos show an approximation of the completed weapon – we did not screw the head to the pole, this is why the screws are not present in the photos. Also poles may have slight bends or warps, however, we inspect them to try and pick the best ones available.