Based on the design of a hammer, the war hammer, as its name suggests, is a melee weapon with a heavy hammerhead mounted atop a long rod. The handle may be as long as that of a polearm or not quite so, but in any case, its length always far surpasses that of the short haft of a normal hammer. Although often incorporating a pick on the rear side of its head, the war hammer otherwise has no sharp edges. It inflicts injury through blunt force trauma alone, shattering bones under crushing blows or cracking skulls open. Unlike the mace, another crushing weapon, the shaft of a war hammer was conventionally carved from wood rather than forged from metal. In particular, the handles of Italian warhammers were commonly constructed from pine in the 15th and 16th centuries.