Underappreciated Historical Weapons: the Goedendag, spear-club

this episode of Chatty versity is brought to you by the release of my novel shadow of the Conqueror book one in Chronicles of ever fall a world of Perpetual day where the continents float in an endless sky and if you want to jump off the edge of one you would fall for many hours and return to the same place in which you fell because the universe is vertically looped and really flattens fantasy universe and I can make think since I because if he leaves and I can break what well I try and be true the laws of history I'm getting distracted it is available right now in eBook payback hardcover and audiobook yes there's an audiobook narrated by two of the best narrators in the world Michael Kramer and Kade Redding also if you've read or listened to the book and you really enjoyed it please it would mean the world to me if you could leave a review on Amazon Goodreads or audible if it was the audiobook you got to enjoy if you like your fantasy epic and hard haha meaning hard magic hard magic magical balls okay hi it's got awkward but if you like cool fantasy you're gonna love this novel please check it out links in the description below wooden dag I am shad and I apologize for my horrible pronunciation yet if you're wondering why I started this video by saying good and dag instead of my classic greetings well Bob and a GOG God than that good translates to good day and interestingly enough that is the very name of the weapon we're looking at in this episode of underappreciated historical weapons the Goron dag and I'm pronouncing it slightly differently because that's just how it's spelled I don't know if it's pronounced exactly the way you would say good and dag and what is it that's Flemish and this is a vicious weapon that was actually very prominent amongst Flemish militias in the 14th century yet you see this weapon in you know I guess TV shows that depict medieval periods I guess you could say this is very much culture specific but I tend to push back a little bit on that because if a weapon is very prominent in one culture at a certain time we're gonna see it bleed over into other cultures as well and this is this is just devastating effective weapon that was prominent certain times a certain location so I think we need to see it appreciated more especially in say fantasy adaptations of the medieval period now as to why this weapon is named good day translation goddamn day well there's theories are added nothing that we know definitively of course and most likely these people you know have come to the conclusion that I like when this weapon was in its heyday it was probably just called the spiked club or the speed Club or something like that because that's seriously what it is right it is a spirit club that's functionally this view and this devastating you know vicious point and it's funny out of all their weapons that have looked at in underappreciated sir whoever's I've really made wooden analogues to get a rough representation this one is very much a real cottage I get I get could do that as much damage as everyone can in fact probably even more so and art because of the type of spike I was able to put on the end more information on that towards the end of the video but one of the theories as to the origin of the name of this weapon comes from when the Flemish were at war with the French and I don't know the specifics but situation where people armed with these weapons were patrolling streets and they wanted to hunt out the French and then come up and there are some might although just say oh good day you know good and bad and if they replied in a French accent or couldn't speak the language fluently well why don't things came as a result a very humorous thing to say when you just kill something good day good day and you hook up in actual fact I've other quite a fan of dota 2 that's one of the games I play quite frequently and as a character in it called axe his ultimate ability is an instant kill and that your opponent or a character is on a certain percentage of low health actually it's a specific number of health but anyway when he had trigger said that times he triggers an impatient rate jumps in the air says oh it's a good day sir exploited blood if there's a connection if the developers knew the idea of the Goron dag that perhaps this was a phrase he said when you dispatch someone good day sir for whatever reason Gordon dag is the name that refers specifically to this special kind of club the spear Club if I was just translated in through common language so let's break down this methodology in design a bit and it goes back to the simple idea of the effectiveness of a club if you were to try and pick what was the first weapon ever used by men in all of history the club would be a fairly high contender if they anyone picked up a stick and use it to hit someone along I got a club right there so it's an ancient weapon yet it's stuck around in prominence because of its effectiveness yet there are certain limitations to the classic old club and some of those limitations we can kind of understand if someone is wearing your opponent is wearing a decent amount of armor whether it be padding mail on top of padding especially plate now when it comes to padding in mail seriously like the heft that this has just by holding it and give it a good swing get an idea of the momentum you could generate with it it's gonna hurt them okay especially if it's a solid strike and wood it you know incapacitates them instantly depends how solder hit if it gets in the head and it's a strong here I don't know how that guy is going to stay standing even if is wearing a helmet but say something in the side you might be able to survive and because it's a blunt force it might not damage any internal organs you hopefully you break a bone but if they survive and they don't break any bones they'll be hurting on record now have a bruise or two but your opponent still might be out of fight and so that's the limitation with clubs what are ways that you can overcome this limitation well in some ways they added something to the top now the goedendag fall is that mentality exactly but it's not a mace cm ace is generally a smaller hafted club with a solid you know bit of metal on the end and it might be spiked it might be not but that certainly increases its damage potential and its effectiveness against armor well with the goedendag it seems like a myth methodology behind it was to increase its length okay that means it's leveraged like baseball bat holds nothing against something like this and for those instances where it might be even like too difficult to get the effectiveness out of this you know big Club you've got this vicious deadly spike on the end to get all the advantages that you would out of using a spear of course one of the disadvantages is inReach it's not as long as a regular sphere but it's certainly long enough you've got a good amount of reach with this thing and in terms of the store accounts as to when and where these weapons were used on the battlefield specifically one of the accounts mentions that there was a group of guys in a line behind a row of pikes and so the pike block was there to try and stall you know I say mounted charge from on horseback as soon as the horses get you know up especially if they committed to the charge and they want to break through the front line perhaps they might you know break past the pike some kind well you had a Hugh know a row of guys with these vicious weapons ready to just I don't know if also be out of them line big strike like that but then they also were able to get solid massive thrusts one of the other accounts actually mentions that they were used in lieu of Pike walls and these were actually used to break cavalry charges in themselves that there would be stuck into the ground you kind of brace it with your foot right there on a steep angle or something like this and it's hard to try and figure out how exactly I'll do it because it doesn't have a lot of height or something like this and would they crouch but you also have to remember that the Gordon dag they varied in length historically they're actually shorter ones than this and it seems like there were longer ones as well I tried to pick the most iconic classic kind of size of this kind of weapon but outside these kind of specific accounts of how these weapons are using like I said it's kind of hot for me to figure out exactly the whole you know bracing for a charge like that because it's not long enough but all right all right that the accounts say that they were using instances like that outside of these things okay the weapon is just devastatingly effective this whole happen of itself right a massive Club and a vicious spear so you've got way more versatility than a regular Club and you've got a lot more I guess punch in a regular spear and because it's shorter you have a bit more versatility in close-quarter combat because you can choke it all the way up here you could probably quarter stop it you'd even hit with the back end massive strikes like this gosh one of the interesting things that I find when we look at the medieval setting adapted to eat a historical dramas whether that's on TV and literature but also in fantasy is when people think of the iconic weapon that is used to overcome opponent's armor one of the big defaults is the mace and of course the mace is a dedicated armor combating weapon it has some severe limitations if you're fighting at someone with a sword who isn't in armor and sorry Michael there are limitations of the mace but that seems to be one of the big go-to ones and then if they're going for something tree handed you'd be looking at like a pole axe or halberd a big pole arm and stuff and this kind of selection is actually limited to the selection that did exist in the medieval period and the Garden tag is one of those overlooked underappreciated weapons that is viciously effective against opponents in armor and was used very prominent in certain locations and times in the medieval period and so I feel it really should be added to the repertoire of weapon you know selections in medieval fantasy settings and historical dramas as well especially if that the servo drama is depicting you know the time a place where these weapons we use prominently okay come on historical accuracy so the goedendag I'm holding right here is a surprisingly accurate hand log to one that existed historically one of find out more predominantly is the historical ones made had kind of a metal cap at the top that the spike was affixed to now I sought to say that perhaps they were never made in the way that I met away you just jam the spike into the bit of wood right there because it's a cheaper alternative doesn't take as much fiddling and it is viciously effective but one of the advantages of having the kind of metal cap around the top is that now you have something even harder on the form striking business in when you do a big windup strike now of course these are pretty brutal strikes that I'm doing with you're really in combat I'm sure you would be perhaps using far more you know effective techniques keep your opponent at bay maybe even the raft guard position like we see with longsword something like this really just happen town a huge strike on your opponent when they're open and of course there's ways to defend with it as well present the point because it's not too top-heavy it is top if you don't owe me wrong but it's not nearly as se top-heavy as I can hugely long spear might be and you can't hold it on the end and get a decent amount of leverage to keep your opponent at bay you got the point to keep them on defense because that's the thing you don't need to do a big whine up strike to do a massive effective hit with this because you've got this spike it is also a spear and so just doing a big jab all right can be devastating kill someone as well now one of the advantages that some historians have postulated as to the design is the fact that there is such a flat here with the spike and they say that this would essentially function in the same way that our wing the wings on a wing spear would or a boar spear sometimes called the advantage being at this flat and the wings on those Spears prevent the spear from penetrating too deep into an opponent because it's a misconception that stabbing someone all the way through and having it come out the back is necessarily as deadly as if you are stabbed all the way up to the tip where this would be because if this gets deep enough to hit vital organs which it would they're gonna die right it's very hard to see them surviving and the problem with if you stabbed them all the way through and it comes out the back is withdrawing your weapon because what if here the you know Europe enemy has buddies you're in a battlefield ready to come in and kill you while your weapon is now stuck and engaged your opponent and you having pulling it out so interesting advantage that people postulated about the flattop won't go all the way in you'll pull it out just as easily and keep on stabbing to your heart's content the other big advantage of the Goran dag is how cheap this weapon would be to manufacture you can get a solid shaft not too hard to find I mean if you have an axe you'll be out of sort yourself out pretty good too you know make one of these and then it's just a matter of getting a spike not too difficult to manufacture any and even if you can't it'd be pretty easy for blacksmiths to manufacture and most likely in a medieval kind of period or 1400 would be looking at something that would be mild steel sometimes even iron perhaps would be higher quality ones but it's a spike okay it doesn't need to be too fancy to be very effective which brings up an interesting topic regarding this one that I heard specifically because how I make it well a bit of hard wood from the hardware store and I was kind of what I was worried that I wouldn't be able to find a decent analog for the spike on this weapon to get a good demonstration analog to figure out how its using and then I came across this vicious thing and it's a roofing punch okay punching holes and corrugated iron tin roofs all that stuff that's why this is four and that creates some very interesting implications because that means the tip here at least if not the whole thing is tooled steel made with modern technology and so this thing is actually going to be far stronger than anything they had in the medieval period between this is probably way more dangerous now of course it's missing that cap but still very effective and because of that I really do want to see how devastating this is so I'm gonna put it to the test just a little bit yeah now if you're wondering why I've been wearing a sort through this whole video well as many of you will know that a sword was a sight I'm at the medieval Prairie and sorry if I was growing in the battlefield and I wanted something heftier that would be out you know take ons opponents and armor and I was using something like a goddamn tag well having a sword as a backup absolutely because it's so convenient to hang it yep it's so easy and you ever see me be walk around with this thing here hasn't been getting in the way and so now this is my riveted mail okay shirt I think it's mild steel which is actually quite accurate to naval period but it is steel riveted mail specifically and are gonna put this vicious flag right here to see how well it ties against now now of course there would be padding underneath this and I could have put my garrison underneath along here miss very much I don't want to damage it and I'm confident that a spike like this would get through Jamison but all right like just just give us a preview as to what we can expect from this okay now again this spike is even more vicious and deadly than a historic one so this isn't gonna be historically accurate but it'll be instructive enough especially with how effective is the one I've made but see how much that is penetrating through the mail without splitting apart any rings so no matter what we're gonna get like half an inch or even what is that might even be two thirds of an inch and I'm doing that for my American viewers I would say two centimeters the the proper way of doing measurements probably triggered so many of you with that or at least gonna get this level of penetration against the mail and then see if it does anymore alright let's go one two three oh my goodness and wow this split apart or like that's getting close here to be a little bit fuzzy but I got a 4k camera now I uploaded in 1080p for the video for the YouTube but it's film in 4k so we should have you know hopefully get some detail here and this cut right in the centre of a ring and just split in apart and it was actually a riveted ring split it apart like it was nothing and wow they caught up to here and honestly I felt if I kept pushing more with a slowly now all right where the spikes on goedendag historically as tapered and as strong as this well this is the thing well this is very interesting right with what the test we just did we don't actually need a hardened tip for it to be viciously effective because it wasn't trying to penetrate like actual steel it was just slipping in between the rings and so the tip doesn't need to be too strong to achieve that just to slip in between a ring and then through the gradual taper it'll just force that ring apart when it comes to say gambeson like this it doesn't need to be hardened steel to overcome there you know smoother the linen the tip just needs to be sharp enough to slip in between the fibers and they start to force it apart and it's going to get through the armor that is vicious now when it comes to plate that's when having something like a hardened steel tip like this would be very effective but the problem with trying to pierce through solid plates and this is the thing that I get annoyed with where people do tests and stuff and if it penetrates the armor is like wow this would be out of beat armors most of they're not it only penetrates the armor by a small amount and so even if it got through the padding underneath the armor and actually broke the skin it wouldn't have gone deep enough to cause serious injury so just be cut with blood it would be annoying cuz you know even that deep can be caused a lot of bleeding but that'd be hard to reach a vital organ as a result and more than the not if it's a metal plate this would get stuck in a metal plate and so honestly if I was going up against someone with plate um I would not revert to I be using the spike unless getting in the joints of the armor I would be doing something like this I broke it well at least it was the end of the video find where that went I've taken safety precautions there's no one else around okay so even though this flew off we're all safe okay that was really instructive because something very interesting happened with that test right here the top split do we see the top here how its split open from the impact so remember how I said there wasn't a cap on the top of mine I think we might have just discovered why there were slight caps made on historical gotten tags because we had that cat the top split open and as a result the spike just flew out or one saw because there is so much weight in this like getting hit like that I have killed someone and sorry there we go we've actually kind of backwards engineered the reason why historical gotten DAGs had a metal cap on the end to fix the spike on more securely but perhaps to also prevent this splitting open if the spike was just jammed in the top there like that now interestingly this was so dangerous and the spike so vicious on this I was gonna pull it out anyway and I was wondering how no because it was jammed in tight I like kidding this was getting really really tight and the factor with it being so tight it came it you know having coming out with one solid swing it alludes to the forces that are okay with that strike the fact that that came out and one solid swing so I guess I just haven't like a baseball bat on steroids now still there we go this has been the historical God and I got a very underappreciated historical weapon thank you very much for watching I hope you have enjoyed and of course I hope to see you again so until that time farewell you

46 Replies to “Underappreciated Historical Weapons: the Goedendag, spear-club”

  1. I’ve been Reading Shadow of the Conqueror and damn, is it a REALLY good, fun fantasy epic. As someone who’s had to develop some settings for D&D campaigns (using your tips) I’m baffled with how rich you made the world of this book. I’m not done yet, but I’m really crossing my fingers that there’ll be more stories in this beautiful setting. 🙂

  2. My copy of Shadow of the Conqueror is delayed as I got scammed elsewhere buying kitchen stuff and had to cancel my card, so new card next week and I can't wait.

  3. The 'oe' in Dutch is pronounced like the 'oo' in English.
    The 'a' is pronounced like the 'a' in the English word 'hard'.

    The 'g' is pronounced differently than you did, but it's not a sound that exists in English. It's like the 'ch' in Scottish 'loch', or a harsher version of the Spanish 'j'. So yeah, not something English speakers are usually capable of pronouncing.

    Not sure how it was in the time when the goedendag existed, but nowadays, Flemish is a dialect of Dutch. For this particular word, the only big difference in pronunciation is with the 'g'. The Flemish 'g' is much softer than the Dutch one.

  4. He's got a board with a nail in it. RUN!

    They'll build bigger board and bigger nails until one day they will build a board with a nail in it so big it will destroy them all!

  5. Dear shadeversity,

    Short version of the story

    This is a weapon used in 1302, when a french dutch (Vlaanderen) wantend to keep trading whit Britain for their wool, to make “laken”.
    After the revolt in Brugge: de brugse metten. Its probabiliteit from This revolt the name for This weapon came about. In brugge they asked the bourgeoisie to use a password schild en vriend ( by legend) and a native french speaker can only answer with skild en wriend. Maybe the came then from a assumed response: a good day sir.
    Whit This weapon we defeted the french royal knight army that had to cross the goeningenbeek at the groeningencouter. Where at the other side of the small stream an army (peasant) would be waiting whit This weapon: de gulden sporenslag.

    Kind regards


    The place where iT was mostly used

    Easy to make, quite aeffective killing power, instead of the rule of capture of the knight.

  6. Quite frankly I didn't even know this weapon existed until I saw it featured in "Battle Brothers" lol. My first reaction was: "WTH; was this seriously a thing??" And yes, turns out it was, and also pretty darn good and effective as a weapon.
    Speaking of "Battle Brothers" there's another weapon I'm particularly fond of in that game: the 2 handed great mace… Would that weapon make sense in reality? Probably not since it would mean giving up the protection of a shield for an increase in blunt force that's not even really needed, but I still would like to know what you make of it.
    Thanks Shad, keep the awesome videos coming, you have become my medieval weapon guru ;p

  7. Hi, big fan from Italy here. I was wondering if you were watching the show "The Outpost", it's a fantasy sort of medieval show. What do you think of the armors and weapons used in the show, and what about all the setting? Please keep up with the great videos.

  8. Why has there never been a use of a wrist mounted blade? Like a sheath is mounted from one arm, then you draw with the other.

  9. Who can count fake weapons on the video? T w T)
    I'm sure about three of them are 🙂
    Thanks for the episode!

  10. You…might want to do some engineering homework, my dude. I knew that was going to break just by looking at it, and that metal shroud was exactly my solution. Even if that spike was three times as long, I wouldn't trust it.

    You'd also want to thread the spike in, rather than press it, and laminate the shaft. Resin epoxy the threads, have someone weld the shroud directly to the spike, rivet the shroud to the shaft. Now you have an indestructible implement of pain. None of this would be out of your league, either.

    You are welcome.

  11. I am very impressed with Shad´s book and really recommend it! I find Shad grating on my nerves sometimes so I were doubtful but damn did he do a homerun!

  12. "Goedendag" is dutch, so it was always a popular weapon to claim on the playground with pretend play, but it was always mixed up with a morning star because those look "cooler".

  13. 15:34 That's a punctured lung right there at least. Probably instant kill if it was anywhere near the heart.

  14. Technically it would be dutch not flemish, flemish is more the a dialect spoken in the dutch speaking region of belgium nl Flanders/Vlaanderen

  15. Flemish guy here!

    Goedendag is pronounced somewhat like "ch-oo-den dach". The Gs in Goedendag are more breathy and guttural (?) than the G in "great". They almost sound like a "CH" in the German word "Buch". It's pretty hard to describe.

    Now, I don't know about the theory that this was used to spot the French in the streets, but it ties in really well with the build up to the Battle of Golden Spurs, where this weapon was used really effectively against cavalry. An alternative for the "goedendag theory" was the phrase "Schild en Vriend" (shield and friend), which had the same effect. Due difficult pronunciation of the SCH sound (which the French pronounced as SK) and the tendency of the French accent to elongate the I, it was a great way to differentiate the Flemish and the French, thus knowing which people had to be killed. At least, that's what I've been taught in school.

  16. If you fell off the edge of an island and returned to your start would you be travelling fast enough to die or would you land harmlessly

  17. mind you that these weapons came into prominence when freemen were forbidden from carrying messer and swords by law in the Netherlands,
    also it is pretty cheap to make and probably always existed in northern europe as it is a very wield-able weapon in dense brush when hunting boar or wolves, when distance isn't too important.

  18. Goede dag, (pronounced correct by this Dutch person) I thought a Goedendag was a metal ball connected to a stick with a chain.

  19. There is no g like gaurd in dutch/flemmish. It is pronounced khoude(n)daakh ou as in would and most would not say rhe n

  20. “Goedendag” is indeed dutch for “good day”

    … but it's definitely not pronounced like that…

  21. I'm Flemish and your pronunciation isn't too bad. The 'G' is a bit hard, but that's a hard one for non-flemish speakers.

  22. Good Day Stick
    "A good day for you, maybe"
    Bludgeoning 25-35 (stun chance 25%)
    Special ability: Sharp Thrust
    Piercing 25-30 (ignores Light Armors)

  23. Of course, knowing that 'Guten Tag' or 'Goeden Dag' was used as a greeting rather than a farewell as nowadays, a more accurate English translation to use is 'Hello there~'

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