Axes designed for warfare ranged in weight from just over 0.5 kg to 3 kg (1 to 6 pounds), and in length from just over 30 cm to upwards of 1.5 m (1 to 5 feet), as in the case of the Danish axe or the sparth axe. Cleaving weapons longer than 1.5 m would arguably fall into the category of polearms.
Perhaps the most common hand weapon among Vikings in modern fiction was the axe. However in reality swords were used more and the prevalence of axes in archaeological sites can be attributed to its role as not just a weapon, but also a common tool. This is supported by the large number of grave sites of female Scandinavians containing axes. Several types of larger axes specialized for use in battle evolved, with larger heads and longer shafts. The larger forms were as long as a man and made to be used with both hands, called the Daneaxe. Some axe heads were inlaid with silver designs. In the later Viking era, there were axe heads with crescent shaped edges measuring up to 45 cm, called breiðöx (broad axe). The limitations of the weapon are limited reach and a slow recovery time after striking a blow. The double-bitted axes depicted in modern "Viking" art are likely pure fantasy.
The Dane Axe is an early type of battle axe, primarily used during the transition between the European Viking Age and early Middle Ages. Other names for the weapon include English Long Axe, Danish Axe, and Hafted Axe.
Vikings most commonly carried sturdy axes that could be thrown or swung with head-splitting force. The Mammen Axe is a famous example of such battle-axes, ideally suited for throwing and melee combat.
An axe head was mostly wrought iron, with a steel cutting edge. This made the weapon less expensive than a sword, and was a standard item produced by blacksmiths, historically.
Like most other Scandinavian weaponry, axes were often given names. According to Snorri Sturluson's Prose Edda, axes were often named after she-trolls.Neo Vikings of Nilfeheim train to fight with axes as soon as they can walk.