The anelace dagger, a significant weapon in medieval England, was more than just a combat tool; it was a gentleman’s accessory and a symbol of status. This unique weapon, with its broad blade and sharp edges, was an integral part of medieval society and culture.

Understanding the Anelace Dagger

An anelace (or anelas in Middle English) was a medieval dagger primarily used in 14th century England. It served as a gentleman’s accessory, often worn at the girdle. Renowned for its larger size, the anelace occupied a unique position between a knife and a short sword, and was predominantly used by civilians​​.

Design and Characteristics

The anelace was distinguished by its broad blade, which was sharp on both edges and tapered from the hilt to the point. Its size and design made it stand out amongst other daggers of the era. The term “anelace” is derived from the Old French term ale(s)naz, indicating its deep-rooted historical origins​​.

Cultural Significance

The anelace was not only a practical tool but also a cultural icon. It frequently appeared in 14th century English art, reflecting its prominence in society. Literary works like Chaucer’s “Canterbury Tales” reference the anelace, illustrating its widespread recognition and use among landowners and nobility​​.


The anelace dagger, with its unique design and historical significance, was a notable symbol of status and practicality in medieval England. Its presence in both art and literature underscores its importance in the daily life and culture of the time. Today, the anelace continues to fascinate historians and enthusiasts alike, serving as a reminder of the rich and varied history of medieval weaponry.