Object Title

Trench club with cast iron head

Trench club with cast iron head


Clubs are amongst the earliest weapons used by man, but trench warfare saw the return of these most basic types of weapons, long thought obsolete.  This type bears a striking resemblance to the 'goedendag' club, Flemish for 'good day', used by the victorious Flemish at the Battle of Courtrai in 1302. The 14th century goedendag was a two-handed weapon which was used to fearsome effect by the Flemish militias against the invading French and their armoured knights. Other trench clubs, mainly German and Austrian, seem to be modelled on other know medieval types, notable the spiked 'morgenstern' (morning star).

Use and effect

Over 600 years later a smaller version of the 'goedendag' was again being used on the battlefields of Flanders in actions of medieval ferocity. Robert Graves, when a Captain of the Royal Welsh Fusiliers, noted before at raid that 'some of the officers were going to carry clubs with spikes on, which were very handy weapons at close quarters in a trench'


Country of manufacture Probably France
Date entered service 1914
Manufacturer Unknown
Other operators Britain
Overall length 47.6 cm (18.74 in)
Primary operator France
Weight 635 g (1 lb 6.4 oz)


Henry Yallop