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A mace is a wooden, metal-reinforced or metal shaft, 3 or more feet long, with a head made of iron or steel adding another foot to 18 inches to the length of the weapon. The head is normally about or slightly thicker than the diameter of the shaft, shaped with flanges, knobs or spikes to allow greater penetration of armour. It, like the war hammer and different other weapons of the time, came about because of the increased use of more effective armor on the battlefield.