Mace weapons were developed from one of the oldest weapons of mankind, knoberry. Several types of mace weapons were used in battles in the Middle Ages.
One of the most popular of these kind of weapons was the flail. The flail was a weapon that was effective even against the most formidable military force of the millennium, the armored cavalry. It could cause substantial damage even without breaking through the armor.
It was the feathered mace, that was the most effective weapon to damage armor. Although flails were not the best weapons to damage the armor, men could strike so much quicker with them, due to the flails’ design, chains added more impetus. Usually there were one or two pieces of metal balls connected to the chains, and to make the damage fatal, there were occasionally spikes on these metal balls.
The great popularity of the flails was caused by the easy usage of the weapon and relatively low production costs. Not only nobles used flails, but infantry soldiers and peasants as well, as they were the agrarian riots’ most frequently used weapons.
Medieval rumors spread that the religious order also enjoyed using flails, as they could defeat the enemy with the weapon, without having the enemy fighter killed. But there is no exact historical proof on this case.