A brandistock (also called brandestoc, buttafuore or feather staff)[1] was a short type of pole weapon which was used by both infantry and civilians alike, primarily police officers in Italy between the 16th and 19th centuries. Measuring some 5 feet long, the brandistock construction was unique for polearms in that it had a retractable blade. The head consisted of either a single or a trio of long thin points, which were kept in a hollow aperture inside the rest of the shaft.[2] A sharp thrust of the weapon forward propelled the heads out, where they could be readily locked in place.[3] This weapon is essentially a spear with a sliding blade, or alternatively, a long handled out-the-front gravity knife.[1]


  1. Alex Putnam (2010-11-11). "Historical Steel: The Haft of It". Kobold Press. Retrieved 2014-08-04.
  2. "Medieval Polearms". All Things Medieval. Retrieved 2014-08-04.
  3. "Combination Weapons". Retrieved 2014-08-04.

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