History UsefulNotes / Archery

26th Nov '17 5:19:25 PM TheBigBopper
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Ah, archery. One of the staples of nearly every media that deals with medieval-era fighting (the ones that don't focus too much on swords, at least). The history of medieval warfare can be found here, on Wiki/TheOtherWiki, and many other places besides--this page is going to focus on the basics of archery itself.

Modern archery involves detailed and extensive accessories, but there are really only a few things needed to actually practice the sport: A strung bow, arrows, protective gear, and a quiver. And a target, of course; you should NEVER shoot at living things (aside from sanctioned, legal hunting); AnnoyingArrows are a ''tiny bit'' less annoying in real life.

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'''Disclaimer: This information is presented purely for educational purposes, particularly for creators who may want to depict archery more accurately. You should seek professional instruction if you want to learn archery, and we are not responsible for any harm that may come from attempting to imitate the practices described herein.'''

Ah, archery. One of Basically the staples art of nearly every media that deals using a bent stick with medieval-era fighting (the ones that don't focus too much on swords, a string tied between the ends to shoot a smaller pointed stick at least). The history something [[Series/MontyPythonsFlyingCircus quite a long way away]], it began as a techinique of medieval warfare can be found here, on Wiki/TheOtherWiki, and many other places besides--this page is going to focus primitive survival, spent a long time as a major force on the basics battlefield, and has finally become a rewarding pastime enjoyed by athletes and hobbyists the world over. Fiction loves to depict archery, as demonstrated by the enduring popularity of {{folk hero}}es such as Myth/RobinHood, along with more modern characters such as [[Literature/TheLordOfTheRings Legolas]], ComicBook/GreenArrow, and [[Literature/TheHungerGames Katniss Everdeen]]. However, what you see is often determined by RuleOfCool and may give you an unrealistic or overly narrow idea of what archery itself.

Modern
is. This summary can help you to start learning about archery.

First, some safety rules in no particular order. See [[http://www.bestrecurvebowguide.com/archery-safety-rules/ here]] for a full list.

# Follow all laws and regulations pertaining to
archery involves detailed in the place where you wish to practice it. Seek out a licensed club or professional instructor: they will make sure what you're doing is safe, and extensive accessories, but you will not bear sole legal responsibility if there is an accident.
# Never point your bow at any living thing that you do not intend to shoot, even if there's no arrow drawn.
# Never draw an arrow if
there are really only a few things needed any people between you and your target. Do not go to actually practice the sport: A strung retrieve your arrows until everyone has stopped shooting.
# Maintain your equipment, and make sure your
bow, arrows, protective gear, string, and a quiver. And a target, of course; arrows are undamaged every time before you should NEVER shoot at living things (aside from sanctioned, legal hunting); AnnoyingArrows are a ''tiny bit'' less annoying in real life.
shoot. Replace any worn or damaged equipment immediately.
# Never dry fire your bow. This means not to draw and release the bowstring without having an arrow knocked: it could damage your bow and cause personal injury.
30th Sep '17 8:07:47 PM TheBigBopper
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The main drawback of archery was the learning time needed: It takes weeks to build up the strength to shoot even a light 25-pound bow, much less a war-bow needing several times that force, and it takes ''more'' weeks to become proficient enough to hit targets consistently. A popular saying was that "To make a good archer, start with his grandfather." Also, something as minor as slouching or head position can affect your shooting drastically, while guns can be shot from any reasonable position. The fact that early guns were comparatively quicker to learn and did not require great physical strength to use (emphasis on "comparatively" quicker; all those steps of reloading took weeks of drilling to memorize) was a major factor in them replacing bows in a military contexts. Other factors were that guns tended to have more "stopping power" than arrows, that the lead ammunition was a lot easier to mass-produce than arrows, and that opponents unused to guns could be terrified by all that noise and smoke. These advantages helped to make up for their lower rate of fire and the reduced accuracy of smoothbore muskets. That said, the disappearance of the bow from military conflict was mainly a Western European phenomeonon: in Eastern Europe, Northern Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, many warriors carried and used both bow and musket for different applications.

to:

The main drawback of archery was the learning time needed: It takes weeks to build up the strength to shoot even a light 25-pound bow, much less a war-bow needing several times that force, and it takes ''more'' weeks to become proficient enough to hit targets consistently. A popular saying was that "To make a good archer, start with his grandfather." Also, something as minor as slouching or head position can affect your shooting drastically, while guns can be shot from any reasonable position. The fact that early guns were comparatively quicker to learn learn[[note]]emphasis on "comparatively" quicker; performing the many steps of reloading quickly and in the proper sequence took a lot of drilling, and was especially hard to do under the stress of combat[[/note]] and did not require great physical strength to use (emphasis on "comparatively" quicker; all those steps of reloading took weeks of drilling to memorize) was a major factor in them replacing bows in a military contexts. Other factors were that guns tended to have more "stopping power" than arrows, that the lead ammunition was a lot easier to mass-produce than arrows, and that opponents unused to guns could be terrified by all that noise and smoke. These advantages helped to make up for their lower rate of fire and the reduced accuracy of smoothbore muskets. That said, the disappearance of the bow from military conflict was mainly a Western European phenomeonon: in Eastern Europe, Northern Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, many warriors carried and used both bow and musket for different applications.
30th Sep '17 8:05:33 PM TheBigBopper
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Arrow wounds can be very serious, and are particularly tricky with barbed arrowheads. You can't leave any part of an arrow where it is--and the process of ''removing it'' is probably more painful than being shot in the first place, if you're not unconscious or drugged. You'd need to get the arrow ''cut'' out of your flesh, by the way. And that's only if a trained surgeon has the tools for it, lacking that the only alternative is to push the arrow out the other end, break it and then pull the shaft out which is as painful as it sounds. Yanking it out would cause lots of bleeding, may cause permanent damage depending on where it is/was[[note]]an arrow in the arm or leg is not JustAFleshWound. It is a ''Potential Nerve Damage'' Wound![[/note]], and at the very least would make the wound much harder to treat than if a trained medic/surgeon made some very careful incisions before carefully pulling it out. Wounds from muskets had their own complications, particularly their tendency to force dirty clothing fibers into the wound.

to:

Arrow wounds can be very serious, and are particularly tricky with barbed arrowheads. You can't leave any part of an arrow where it is--and the process of ''removing it'' is probably more painful than being shot in the first place, if you're not unconscious or drugged. You'd need to get the arrow ''cut'' out of your flesh, by the way. And that's only if a trained surgeon has the tools for it, lacking that the only alternative is to push the arrow out the other end, break it and then pull the shaft out which is as painful as it sounds. Yanking it out would cause lots of bleeding, may cause permanent damage depending on where it is/was[[note]]an arrow in the arm or leg is not JustAFleshWound. It is a ''Potential Nerve Damage'' Wound![[/note]], and at the very least would make the wound much harder to treat than if a trained medic/surgeon made some very careful incisions before carefully pulling it out. Wounds from muskets Musket balls had their own complications, particularly their tendency to force dirty clothing fibers into the wound.
wound, and the method of extracing them was somewhat different.
30th Sep '17 8:03:47 PM TheBigBopper
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The main drawback of archery was the learning time needed: It takes weeks to build up the strength to shoot even a light 25-pound bow, much less a war-bow needing several times that force, and it takes ''more'' weeks to become proficient enough to hit targets consistently. A popular saying was that "To make a good archer, start with his grandfather." Also, something as minor as slouching or head position can affect your shooting drastically, while guns can be shot from any reasonable position. The fact that early guns were comparatively quicker to learn and did not require great physical strength to use (emphasis on "comparatively"; all those steps of reloading took weeks of drilling to memorize) was a major factor in them replacing bows in a military contexts. Other factors were that guns tended to have more "stopping power" than arrows, that the lead ammunition was a lot easier to mass-produce than arrows, and that opponents unused to guns could be terrified by all that noise and smoke. These advantages helped to make up for their lower rate of fire and the reduced accuracy of smoothbore muskets. That said, the disappearance of the bow from military conflict was mainly a Western European phenomeonon: in Eastern Europe, Northern Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, many warriors carried and used both bow and musket for different applications.

to:

The main drawback of archery was the learning time needed: It takes weeks to build up the strength to shoot even a light 25-pound bow, much less a war-bow needing several times that force, and it takes ''more'' weeks to become proficient enough to hit targets consistently. A popular saying was that "To make a good archer, start with his grandfather." Also, something as minor as slouching or head position can affect your shooting drastically, while guns can be shot from any reasonable position. The fact that early guns were comparatively quicker to learn and did not require great physical strength to use (emphasis on "comparatively"; "comparatively" quicker; all those steps of reloading took weeks of drilling to memorize) was a major factor in them replacing bows in a military contexts. Other factors were that guns tended to have more "stopping power" than arrows, that the lead ammunition was a lot easier to mass-produce than arrows, and that opponents unused to guns could be terrified by all that noise and smoke. These advantages helped to make up for their lower rate of fire and the reduced accuracy of smoothbore muskets. That said, the disappearance of the bow from military conflict was mainly a Western European phenomeonon: in Eastern Europe, Northern Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, many warriors carried and used both bow and musket for different applications.
30th Sep '17 8:01:17 PM TheBigBopper
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* ''The (English) longbow:'' This bow was made from a single piece of wood, often taken from the place where the springy sapwood meets the stiff heartwood: the heartwood forms the belly of the bow and the sapwood forms its back. One reason they might have done this is so that the tensile strength of the sapwood and the compressive strength of the heartwood would combine to make it more efficent, like a composite bow, but it's just as likely that they did this to make manufacturing easier, and bows made entirely of heartwood were not unheard of. And although yew was preferred (and often called the King of Bow-woods), it wasn't rare to make the bow out of ash or elm either. A yew bow would have plenty of knots in it, which were left standing proud when the bow was shaved into shape because shaving them off would create weak points. The cross-section of the bow was D-shaped, with the back of the bow flat and the belly of the bow curved. While less efficent than a bow with flat limbs, the D-section reduced the danger of breaking under the enormous stresses they were subjected to. Unlike Victorian longbows, which have a hand grip and only bend in the arms, the medieval longbow usually had no special grip and would bend along its entire length. Since the wood changes shape and balance slightly in response to moisture, archers may have preferred the freedom to adjust their grip to wherever the arms were balanced. Nice ones had knocks made of horn on the ends, and the tips of the arms were slightly recurved. On lighter bows the string could be made of linen, but the heaviest bows used hemp as one could get a single long fiber that would be guaranteed not to snap. Hunting bows were rarely more than 50-60 pounds in draw weight, as all but the largest game can be penetrated and dropped with that much power, and more would have been a waste. This is because animals don't wear armor, and are usually engaged at relatively close range. Since warbows had to deal with these things, their draw weights could be truly monstrous: surviving warbows recovered from the wreck of a Tudor warship, the Mary Rose, range from 100-185 pounds at a 30 inch draw, with the median being 150-160 lbs. The high draw weight of the warbow was used to propel heavy war arrows, which carried more force to the target than light arrows and were more likely to penetrate. Boys practiced from a young age, using progressively more powerful bows as they developed the powerful back and shoulder muscles required to draw heavy bows. The basic form of the longbow has been around since prehistoric times, and bows similar to the English longbow were used throughout Europe during the Middle Ages. What made the English different was that they had a bow-shooting culture that enabled them to raise large numbers of archers who were proficient with very powerful bows, something that few other countries were able to do.

to:

* ''The (English) longbow:'' This bow was made from a single piece of wood, often taken from the place where the springy sapwood meets the stiff heartwood: the heartwood forms the belly of the bow and the sapwood forms its back. One reason they might have done this is so that the tensile strength of the sapwood and the compressive strength of the heartwood would combine to make it more efficent, like a composite bow, but it's just as likely that they did this to make manufacturing easier, and bows made entirely of heartwood were not unheard of. And although yew was preferred (and often called the King of Bow-woods), it wasn't rare to make the bow out of ash or elm either. A yew bow would have plenty of knots in it, which were left standing proud when the bow was shaved into shape because shaving them off would create weak points. The cross-section of the bow was D-shaped, with the back of the bow flat and the belly of the bow curved. While less efficent than a bow with flat limbs, the D-section reduced the danger of breaking under the enormous stresses they were subjected to. Unlike Victorian longbows, which have a hand grip and only bend in the arms, the medieval longbow usually had no special grip and would bend along its entire length. Since the wood changes shape and balance slightly in response to moisture, archers may have preferred the freedom to adjust their grip to wherever the arms were balanced. Nice ones had knocks made of horn on the ends, and the tips of the arms were slightly recurved. On lighter bows the string could be made of linen, but the heaviest bows used hemp as one could get a single long fiber that would be guaranteed not to snap. Hunting bows were rarely more than 50-60 pounds in draw weight, as all but the largest game can be penetrated and dropped with that much power, and more power would have been a waste. This is because animals don't wear armor, and are usually engaged at relatively close range. Since warbows had to deal with these things, their draw weights could be truly monstrous: surviving warbows recovered from the wreck of a Tudor warship, the Mary Rose, range from 100-185 pounds at a 30 inch draw, with the median being 150-160 lbs. The average length of the Mary Rose bows is 6 ft, 6 in (1.98m). The high draw weight of the warbow was used to propel heavy war arrows, which carried more force to the target than light arrows and were more likely to penetrate. Boys practiced from a young age, using progressively more powerful bows as they developed the powerful back and shoulder muscles required to draw heavy bows. The basic form of the longbow has been around since prehistoric times, and bows similar to the English longbow were used throughout Europe during the Middle Ages. What made the English different was that they had a bow-shooting culture that enabled them to raise large numbers of archers who were proficient with very powerful bows, something that few other countries were able to do.
30th Sep '17 7:56:02 PM TheBigBopper
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The main drawback of archery was the learning time needed: It takes weeks to build up the strength to shoot even a light 25-pound bow, much less a war-bow needing several times that force, and it takes ''more'' weeks to become proficient enough to hit targets consistently. A popular saying was that "To make a good archer, start with his grandfather." Also, something as minor as slouching or head position can affect your shooting drastically, while guns can be shot from any reasonable position. The fact that early guns were comparatively quicker to learn and did not require great physical strength to use (emphasis on "comparatively"; all those steps of reloading took weeks of drilling to memorize) was a major factor in them replacing bows in a military contexts. Other factors were that guns tended to have more "stopping power" than arrows, that the lead ammunition was a lot easier to mass-produce (arrows were ''expensive'"!), and that opponents unused to guns could be terrified by all that noise and smoke. These advantages helped to make up for their lower rate of fire and the reduced accuracy of smoothbore muskets. That said, the disappearance of the bow from military conflict was mainly a Western European phenomeonon: in Eastern Europe, Northern Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, many warriors carried and used both bow and musket for different applications.

to:

The main drawback of archery was the learning time needed: It takes weeks to build up the strength to shoot even a light 25-pound bow, much less a war-bow needing several times that force, and it takes ''more'' weeks to become proficient enough to hit targets consistently. A popular saying was that "To make a good archer, start with his grandfather." Also, something as minor as slouching or head position can affect your shooting drastically, while guns can be shot from any reasonable position. The fact that early guns were comparatively quicker to learn and did not require great physical strength to use (emphasis on "comparatively"; all those steps of reloading took weeks of drilling to memorize) was a major factor in them replacing bows in a military contexts. Other factors were that guns tended to have more "stopping power" than arrows, that the lead ammunition was a lot easier to mass-produce (arrows were ''expensive'"!), than arrows, and that opponents unused to guns could be terrified by all that noise and smoke. These advantages helped to make up for their lower rate of fire and the reduced accuracy of smoothbore muskets. That said, the disappearance of the bow from military conflict was mainly a Western European phenomeonon: in Eastern Europe, Northern Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, many warriors carried and used both bow and musket for different applications.
30th Sep '17 7:54:51 PM TheBigBopper
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It should be noted that the main factor in archery's death as a martial skill was not because it was "primitive." Bows are as directly effective as guns, and have significantly ''higher'' rates of complication from the fact that you've got, essentially, a tiny knife stuck in your flesh. Moreover, while you can sometimes survive leaving a bullet or harmless fragment where it is[[note]]but even ''this'' is only done when taking it out would potentially cause more damage than leaving it there[[/note]], you can't leave any part of an arrow where it is--and the process of ''removing it'' is probably more painful than being shot in the first place, if you're not unconscious or drugged. You'd need to get the arrow ''cut'' out of your flesh, by the way. And that's only if a trained surgeon has the tools for it, lacking that the only alternative is to push the arrow out the other end, break it and then pull the shaft out which is as painful as it sounds. Yanking it out would cause lots of bleeding, may cause permanent damage depending on where it is/was[[note]]an arrow in the arm or leg is not JustAFleshWound. It is a ''Potential Nerve Damage'' Wound![[/note]], and at the very least would make the wound much harder to treat than if a trained medic/surgeon made some very careful incisions before carefully pulling it out.

The main drawback of archery was the learning time needed: It takes weeks to build up the strength to shoot even a light 25-pound bow, much less a war-bow needing several times that force, and it takes ''more'' weeks to become proficient enough to hit targets consistently. A popular saying was that "To make a good archer, start with his grandfather." Also, something as minor as slouching or head position can affect your shooting drastically, while guns can be shot from any reasonable position. The trade-off between efficient but time-consuming bows and slightly inferior but easy-to-learn guns heralded the end of the bow's military use.

to:

It should Arrow wounds can be noted that the main factor in archery's death as a martial skill was not because it was "primitive." Bows very serious, and are as directly effective as guns, and have significantly ''higher'' rates of complication from the fact that you've got, essentially, a tiny knife stuck in your flesh. Moreover, while you can sometimes survive leaving a bullet or harmless fragment where it is[[note]]but even ''this'' is only done when taking it out would potentially cause more damage than leaving it there[[/note]], you particularly tricky with barbed arrowheads. You can't leave any part of an arrow where it is--and the process of ''removing it'' is probably more painful than being shot in the first place, if you're not unconscious or drugged. You'd need to get the arrow ''cut'' out of your flesh, by the way. And that's only if a trained surgeon has the tools for it, lacking that the only alternative is to push the arrow out the other end, break it and then pull the shaft out which is as painful as it sounds. Yanking it out would cause lots of bleeding, may cause permanent damage depending on where it is/was[[note]]an arrow in the arm or leg is not JustAFleshWound. It is a ''Potential Nerve Damage'' Wound![[/note]], and at the very least would make the wound much harder to treat than if a trained medic/surgeon made some very careful incisions before carefully pulling it out.

out. Wounds from muskets had their own complications, particularly their tendency to force dirty clothing fibers into the wound.

The main drawback of archery was the learning time needed: It takes weeks to build up the strength to shoot even a light 25-pound bow, much less a war-bow needing several times that force, and it takes ''more'' weeks to become proficient enough to hit targets consistently. A popular saying was that "To make a good archer, start with his grandfather." Also, something as minor as slouching or head position can affect your shooting drastically, while guns can be shot from any reasonable position. The trade-off between efficient but time-consuming fact that early guns were comparatively quicker to learn and did not require great physical strength to use (emphasis on "comparatively"; all those steps of reloading took weeks of drilling to memorize) was a major factor in them replacing bows and slightly inferior but easy-to-learn guns heralded the end of the bow's in a military use.
contexts. Other factors were that guns tended to have more "stopping power" than arrows, that the lead ammunition was a lot easier to mass-produce (arrows were ''expensive'"!), and that opponents unused to guns could be terrified by all that noise and smoke. These advantages helped to make up for their lower rate of fire and the reduced accuracy of smoothbore muskets. That said, the disappearance of the bow from military conflict was mainly a Western European phenomeonon: in Eastern Europe, Northern Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, many warriors carried and used both bow and musket for different applications.
30th Sep '17 7:29:32 PM TheBigBopper
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* ''The (English) longbow:'' This bow was made from a single piece of wood, often taken from the place where the springy sapwood meets the stiff heartwood: the heartwood forms the belly of the bow and the sapwood forms its back. One reason they might have done this is so that the tensile strength of the sapwood and the compressive strength of the heartwood would combine to make it more efficent, like a composite bow, but it's just as likely that they did this to make manufacturing easier, and bows made entirely of heartwood were not unheard of. And although yew was preferred (and often called the King of Bow-woods), it wasn't rare to make the bow out of ash or elm either. A yew bow would have plenty of knots in it, which were left standing proud when the bow was shaved into shape because shaving them off would create weak points. The cross-section of the bow was D-shaped, with the back of the bow flat and the belly of the bow curved. While less efficent than a bow with flat limbs, the D-section reduced the danger of breaking under the enormous stresses they were subjected to. Unlike Victorian longbows, which have a hand grip and only bend in the arms, the medieval longbow usually had no special grip and would bend along its entire length. Since the wood changes shape and balance slightly in response to moisture, archers may have preferred the freedom to adjust their grip to wherever the arms were balanced. Nice ones had knocks made of horn on the ends, and the tips of the arms were slightly recurved. On lighter bows the string could be made of linen, but the heaviest bows used hemp as one could get a single long fiber that would be guaranteed not to snap. Hunting bows were rarely more than 50-60 pounds in draw weight, as all but the largest game can be penetrated and dropped with that much power, and more would have been a waste. This is because animals don't wear armor, and are usually engaged at relatively close range. Since warbows had to deal with these things, their draw weights could be truly monstrous: surviving warbows recovered from the wreck of a Tudor warship, the Mary Rose, range from 100-185 pounds at a 30 inch draw, with the median being 150-160 lbs. Boys practiced from a young age, using progressively more powerful bows as they developed the powerful back and shoulder muscles required to draw heavy bows. The basic form of the longbow has been around since prehistoric times, and bows similar to the English longbow were used throughout Europe during the Middle Ages. What made the English different was that they had a bow-shooting culture that enabled them to raise large numbers of archers who were proficient with very powerful bows, something that few other countries were able to do.

to:

* ''The (English) longbow:'' This bow was made from a single piece of wood, often taken from the place where the springy sapwood meets the stiff heartwood: the heartwood forms the belly of the bow and the sapwood forms its back. One reason they might have done this is so that the tensile strength of the sapwood and the compressive strength of the heartwood would combine to make it more efficent, like a composite bow, but it's just as likely that they did this to make manufacturing easier, and bows made entirely of heartwood were not unheard of. And although yew was preferred (and often called the King of Bow-woods), it wasn't rare to make the bow out of ash or elm either. A yew bow would have plenty of knots in it, which were left standing proud when the bow was shaved into shape because shaving them off would create weak points. The cross-section of the bow was D-shaped, with the back of the bow flat and the belly of the bow curved. While less efficent than a bow with flat limbs, the D-section reduced the danger of breaking under the enormous stresses they were subjected to. Unlike Victorian longbows, which have a hand grip and only bend in the arms, the medieval longbow usually had no special grip and would bend along its entire length. Since the wood changes shape and balance slightly in response to moisture, archers may have preferred the freedom to adjust their grip to wherever the arms were balanced. Nice ones had knocks made of horn on the ends, and the tips of the arms were slightly recurved. On lighter bows the string could be made of linen, but the heaviest bows used hemp as one could get a single long fiber that would be guaranteed not to snap. Hunting bows were rarely more than 50-60 pounds in draw weight, as all but the largest game can be penetrated and dropped with that much power, and more would have been a waste. This is because animals don't wear armor, and are usually engaged at relatively close range. Since warbows had to deal with these things, their draw weights could be truly monstrous: surviving warbows recovered from the wreck of a Tudor warship, the Mary Rose, range from 100-185 pounds at a 30 inch draw, with the median being 150-160 lbs. The high draw weight of the warbow was used to propel heavy war arrows, which carried more force to the target than light arrows and were more likely to penetrate. Boys practiced from a young age, using progressively more powerful bows as they developed the powerful back and shoulder muscles required to draw heavy bows. The basic form of the longbow has been around since prehistoric times, and bows similar to the English longbow were used throughout Europe during the Middle Ages. What made the English different was that they had a bow-shooting culture that enabled them to raise large numbers of archers who were proficient with very powerful bows, something that few other countries were able to do.
30th Sep '17 7:22:21 PM TheBigBopper
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* ''The (English) longbow:'' This bow was made from a single piece of wood, often taken from the place where the springy sapwood meets the stiff heartwood: the heartwood forms the belly of the bow and the sapwood forms its back. One reason they might have done this is so that the tensile strength of the sapwood and the compressive strength of the heartwood would combine to make it more efficent, like a composite bow, but it's just as likely that they did this to make manufacturing easier, and bows made entirely of heartwood were not unheard of. And although yew was preferred (and often called the King of Bow-woods), it wasn't rare to make the bow out of ash or elm either. A yew bow would have plenty of knots in it, which were left standing proud when the bow was shaved into shape because shaving them off would create weak points. The cross-section of the bow was D-shaped, with the back of the bow flat and the belly of the bow curved. While less efficent than a bow with flat limbs, the D-section reduced the danger of breaking under the enormous stresses they were subjected to. Unlike Victorian longbows, which have a hand grip and only bend in the arms, the medieval longbow usually had no special grip and would bend along its entire length. Since the wood changes shape and balance slightly in response to moisture, archers may have preferred the freedom to adjust their grip to wherever the arms were balanced. Nice ones had knocks made of horn on the ends, and the tips of the arms were slightly recurved. On lighter bows the string could be made of linen, but the heaviest bows used hemp as one could get a single long fiber that would be guaranteed not to snap. Hunting bows were rarely more than 50-60 pounds in draw weight, as all but the largest game can be penetrated and dropped with that much power, and more would have been a waste. This is because animals don't wear armor, and are usually engaged at relatively close range. Since warbows had to deal with these things, their draw weights could be truly monstrous: surviving warbows recovered from the wreck of a Tudor warship, the Mary Rose, range from 100-185 pounds at a 30 inch draw, with the median being 150-160 lbs. The basic form of the longbow has been around since prehistoric times, and bows similar to the English longbow were used throughout Europe during the Middle Ages. What made the English different was that they had a bow-shooting culture that enabled them to raise large numbers of archers who were proficient with very powerful bows, something that few other countries were able to do.

to:

* ''The (English) longbow:'' This bow was made from a single piece of wood, often taken from the place where the springy sapwood meets the stiff heartwood: the heartwood forms the belly of the bow and the sapwood forms its back. One reason they might have done this is so that the tensile strength of the sapwood and the compressive strength of the heartwood would combine to make it more efficent, like a composite bow, but it's just as likely that they did this to make manufacturing easier, and bows made entirely of heartwood were not unheard of. And although yew was preferred (and often called the King of Bow-woods), it wasn't rare to make the bow out of ash or elm either. A yew bow would have plenty of knots in it, which were left standing proud when the bow was shaved into shape because shaving them off would create weak points. The cross-section of the bow was D-shaped, with the back of the bow flat and the belly of the bow curved. While less efficent than a bow with flat limbs, the D-section reduced the danger of breaking under the enormous stresses they were subjected to. Unlike Victorian longbows, which have a hand grip and only bend in the arms, the medieval longbow usually had no special grip and would bend along its entire length. Since the wood changes shape and balance slightly in response to moisture, archers may have preferred the freedom to adjust their grip to wherever the arms were balanced. Nice ones had knocks made of horn on the ends, and the tips of the arms were slightly recurved. On lighter bows the string could be made of linen, but the heaviest bows used hemp as one could get a single long fiber that would be guaranteed not to snap. Hunting bows were rarely more than 50-60 pounds in draw weight, as all but the largest game can be penetrated and dropped with that much power, and more would have been a waste. This is because animals don't wear armor, and are usually engaged at relatively close range. Since warbows had to deal with these things, their draw weights could be truly monstrous: surviving warbows recovered from the wreck of a Tudor warship, the Mary Rose, range from 100-185 pounds at a 30 inch draw, with the median being 150-160 lbs. Boys practiced from a young age, using progressively more powerful bows as they developed the powerful back and shoulder muscles required to draw heavy bows. The basic form of the longbow has been around since prehistoric times, and bows similar to the English longbow were used throughout Europe during the Middle Ages. What made the English different was that they had a bow-shooting culture that enabled them to raise large numbers of archers who were proficient with very powerful bows, something that few other countries were able to do.
30th Sep '17 7:19:25 PM TheBigBopper
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* ''The (English) longbow:'' This bow was made from a single piece of wood taken from the place where the springy sapwood meets the stiff heartwood: the heartwood forms the belly of the bow and the sapwood forms its back. This is a kind of natural composite construction; the composite bow is more efficient because it combines different materials. While yew was preferred (and often called the King of Bow-woods) it wasn't rare to make the bow out of ash or elm. A yew bow would have plenty of knots in it, which were left standing proud when the bow was shaved into shape because shaving them off would create weak points. Unlike Victorian longbows, which have a hand grip and only bend in the arms, the medieval longbow usually had no special grip and would bend along its entire length. Nice ones had knocks made of horn on the ends, and the tips of the arms were slightly recurved. At six and a half feet, it was extremely powerful and efficient as both a hunting bow and war-bow. Draw-weights of surviving medieval warbows were estimated at 150-200 pounds. The English longbow is not the only type of longbow, but on that note, it is important ''not'' to lump them in with the Japanese ''yumi''; they are made of different materials and require different ways of shooting. Longbows were common in wet climates, where shooting in forested areas was uncommon.

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* ''The (English) longbow:'' This bow was made from a single piece of wood wood, often taken from the place where the springy sapwood meets the stiff heartwood: the heartwood forms the belly of the bow and the sapwood forms its back. This One reason they might have done this is a kind so that the tensile strength of natural the sapwood and the compressive strength of the heartwood would combine to make it more efficent, like a composite construction; the composite bow is more efficient because it combines different materials. While bow, but it's just as likely that they did this to make manufacturing easier, and bows made entirely of heartwood were not unheard of. And although yew was preferred (and often called the King of Bow-woods) Bow-woods), it wasn't rare to make the bow out of ash or elm.elm either. A yew bow would have plenty of knots in it, which were left standing proud when the bow was shaved into shape because shaving them off would create weak points. The cross-section of the bow was D-shaped, with the back of the bow flat and the belly of the bow curved. While less efficent than a bow with flat limbs, the D-section reduced the danger of breaking under the enormous stresses they were subjected to. Unlike Victorian longbows, which have a hand grip and only bend in the arms, the medieval longbow usually had no special grip and would bend along its entire length. Since the wood changes shape and balance slightly in response to moisture, archers may have preferred the freedom to adjust their grip to wherever the arms were balanced. Nice ones had knocks made of horn on the ends, and the tips of the arms were slightly recurved. At six On lighter bows the string could be made of linen, but the heaviest bows used hemp as one could get a single long fiber that would be guaranteed not to snap. Hunting bows were rarely more than 50-60 pounds in draw weight, as all but the largest game can be penetrated and a half feet, it was extremely powerful dropped with that much power, and efficient as both more would have been a hunting bow waste. This is because animals don't wear armor, and war-bow. Draw-weights of are usually engaged at relatively close range. Since warbows had to deal with these things, their draw weights could be truly monstrous: surviving medieval warbows were estimated recovered from the wreck of a Tudor warship, the Mary Rose, range from 100-185 pounds at 150-200 pounds. a 30 inch draw, with the median being 150-160 lbs. The basic form of the longbow has been around since prehistoric times, and bows similar to the English longbow is not were used throughout Europe during the only type of longbow, but on that note, it is important ''not'' to lump them in with the Japanese ''yumi''; they are Middle Ages. What made of the English different materials and require different ways was that they had a bow-shooting culture that enabled them to raise large numbers of shooting. Longbows archers who were common in wet climates, where shooting in forested areas was uncommon.proficient with very powerful bows, something that few other countries were able to do.
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