Vígnestr: ‘War-Needle’

This is a massive, near sword-length spear inspired by those used in the 9th and 10th centuries of the Viking age. Archaeologists call these ‘lances’ and the distinct carving in the socket suggests that these were made in the Germanic regions of Europe and imported into Scandinavia.  My version was forged from a failed pattern-welded sword billet and was made by combining 5 separate layered bars together and inserting into an iron socket… a common way to construct spears at the time.  While mine is fairly accurate in overall shape.. mine is somewhat more narrow, thin and light compared to the originals.  It feels nimble but also powerful in the hand with the short haft. Nobody is sure how these spears were used.  They might have been pole-arms used in mass shield combat, they may have been used on horseback, or they might have been used against those on horseback.  To me they are powerful, elegant, dangerous and terrifying.   In ancient Scandinavia poetic verses called ‘kennings’ were used to describe weapons.  The kenning ‘War-Needle’, or Vígnestr, seemed appropriate for this spear.  If you are familiar with my work you will know that I’m fascinated by the idea of found relics and heirloom weapons.  Spears and swords were often passed from generation to generation and often became legendary.   Vígnestr can be seen as an ancient heirloom, perhaps used in a famous battle where the carved haft was hewn assunder and then passed on.

The carved haft is from hard maple and the decoration is inspired by styles found on various objects associated with 9th century Scandinavia.  It is removable via a pin so this can be mounted on a full length haft is so desired. The spear point itself is 24″ in length and total length with haft is 40″.

I’m asking $1000 for this weapon.  Shipping will vary by location.



  1. jim Stoddard

    War-Needle indeed! Very impressive, imaginative, and elegant; my compliments all around. Big regards, Jim

    • Terry

      That’s a beautiful piece. Terry If I was still collecting I would buy that one.

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