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Old 11-28-2008, 10:51 AM   #11
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Finland
Default Re: Low-Tech Missile Weapon Range and Accuracy

Originally Posted by Polydamas
Archbishop Latimer (whom Queen Mary burned) delivered a famous sermon on archery. He describes his father giving him a series of bows as he grew up and got stronger. Part of this was that no eight-year-old was going to use a six-foot longbow, but its fairly clear that stronger archers selected stronger bows. Perhaps this didn't happen when getting a fresh bow from storage in an emergency, but under most circumstances an archer could try several and pick the one he liked. I think the Strategikon also suggests that better archers should use stronger bows.

I don't know of any reference to using a partial draw on a heavy bow, although it might work in emergencies. But a bow suited to the archer's strength would be more practical. The English were very proud of using a full draw on heavy bows, but if you look at the sources the idea of archers who only draw to the chest seems to be a myth.
Well no eight year olds has ST 11...

Could be a job for mythbusters.. Somebody of fairly normal strength and little archery practise should just pick up a longbow and shoot at a target drawing it to "chest" - or to where he can draw it (probably to nose instead of ear or something).. IF drawing he bow fully was something people were proud of - it could be something not everyone could do..

But I agree that there were probably bows of different weight. But 100 to 150 lbs range would likely cower nicely strengths 10 to 18 or so.. Or at least form ST 11 to 17 - If that was the range of bows actually taken to battlefield.
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bow, crossbow, low-tech, missile weapons

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