Clubs are probably the oldest and most widely used of all offensive weapons. Although most commonly carved from wood, clubs can be made with stone, bone and metal. They vary from small and surprisingly light to massive two-handed forms. Although some clubs are very simple in shape, many show design features that are stylistic rather than functional. These clubs tend to be embellished with designs that express the status and preferences of the individual owner. Only rarely do they display ornamentation with symbolic or public display functions.
With the advent of metal, many cultures stopped using clubs in warfare, some preferring maces with metal heads instead. However in Oceania, where club warfare was especially common, these exquisitely carved and decorated weapons were widely used well into recent times.