Maccus concept

Maccus holding an axe

"Fitz, grab your axe! Help me take the mainmast down!"
Jack Sparrow to Fitzwilliam P. Dalton III[src]

An Axe, or Ax, is a weapon comprised of a blade on a wooden or iron handle. The axe was a widely used weapon during the Age of Piracy.

Someone who wields an axe is called an Axman.

An axe consist of one blade, or head, used for slicing and hacking, and a handle for gripping. The axe was simple and easy to use. All techniques of using an axe were about the same for many cultures. The ax had a small swinging area, so the weapon was most effective in close-combat. Axes were always cheaper than Cutlasses.

Axes were mainly used for fighting, however were occasionally used for ceremonial reasons.

Notable Ax TypesEdit

Boarding axeEdit


Widely use by Europeans to board enemy vessels, the Boarding Ax was a smaller version of the Battle Ax. The Boarding Ax was popular among sailors during the 11th century A.D. to the 19th century A.D. The Boarding Ax was also a main weapon for Pirates during the Age of Piracy. This kind of axe was known to be thrown at enemies when in battle.

Battle axeEdit

Axe 2

Similar to the Boarding Axe, the Battle Axe was used in land battles. Many were suitable for use in one hand, while others were larger and were wielded using both hands. Axes designed for warfare ranged in weight from just over 0.5 kg to 3 kg (1 to 6 pounds), and in length from just over 30 cm to upwards of 1.5 m (1 to 5 feet), such as the Danish axe or the sparth axe. Anything longer than 1.5 m would arguably fall more into the category of pole arms. Through the course of human history, commonplace objects have been pressed into service as weapons. Axes, by virtue of their ubiquity, are no exception. Besides axes designed for combat, there were many axes that were both tools and weapons. Axes could be designed as throwing weapons as well.



A tomahawk is a type of axe native to North America, traditionally resembling a hatchet with a straight shaft. The name came into the English language in the 17th century as a transliteration of the Virginian Algonquian word. Tomahawks were general purpose tools used by Native Americans and European Colonials alike, and often employed as a hand-to-hand or a thrown weapon. It originally featured a stone head, but later iron or brass heads were used. The metal tomahawk heads were originally based on a Royal Navy boarding axe and used as a trade-item with Native Americans for food and other provisions.

Spontoon Pipe TomahawkEdit


A French trapper and Iroquois collaboration, this was an axe with a knife-like stabbing blade instead of the familiar wedged shape.

Axes on polesEdit



Three halberds left near the dead pirate.

The Halberd is a spear-like weapon with a hooked poll. It was effective against cavalry. It was also used for ceremonial purposes.

Pole axeEdit

Designed to defeat plate armor, its axe (or hammer) head is much narrower than other axes, which accounts for its penetrating power.

Notable axesEdit

Behind the scenesEdit

  • Unlike many other pirate movies in which all pirate officers dueled with rapiers, the Pirates of the Caribbean movies gives a realistic depiction of pirate weapons.


External linksEdit