It looks like an adze, same handle and hammer like back, but the blade is vertical.enter image description here

  • 1
    More of a narrow axe than adze. Handle looks more for an axe/axe type use also.
    – crip659
    Commented Aug 25, 2022 at 11:26
  • 1
    it may be a post hole mortise axe
    – jsotola
    Commented Aug 25, 2022 at 14:55

2 Answers 2


Appears to be a variant on a polled mortise ax, though I can't immediately find an example with such a long poll (the back end, which would be struck while the tool was held in position). That would be used for making large mortises in large beams.

I'd agree that someone has used it for a splitting maul, based on the handle damage, but that's probably not what it was made to do. Then again, it's also a bit thick for a typical mortise axe.

  • Possibly once was a "Double Bit Mortise Axe" and then perhaps abused on the back end, or cut off.
    – P2000
    Commented Aug 25, 2022 at 16:42

Assuming you mean the one in the middle directly in front of the spade and all the rest are clearly gardening tools...

I would say a splitting axe used to split small logs (or pieces of logs) to make them more manageable for use in a fireplace.

It is an unusual narrow blade though. Most splitting axes are at least twice as wide.

EDIT: After seeing Ecnerwal's answer I have to agree with him. This axe probably started it's working career as a mortise axe.

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