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Author Topic:   Were shortbows in common use?
posted 02-08-2006 02:49 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SwordOfErin   Click Here to Email SwordOfErin     Edit/Delete Message
I know the English and Welsh were big on longbows and they did great things, but did anybody in the West use shortbows? The one advantage the shortbows have over long ones is that you could shoot a shortbow from the saddle...but the range and pull are smaller. But were there any countries that used shortbows, if so who and what else can you tell me about the archers?

If I had a life, I wouldn't need a signature

posted 02-09-2006 02:29 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Maria   Click Here to Email Maria     Edit/Delete Message
I've found this http://margo.student.utwente.nl/sagi/faq/history.shtml
but I'm still looking...

posted 02-09-2006 02:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Maria   Click Here to Email Maria     Edit/Delete Message
Wikipedia states that the shortbow was used for hunting. Together with the long-bow...
Also, I found something I thought was interesting: Although the bow is nowadays thought of primarily as a weapon, it is not clear whether this was its original use. It may have started life as a musical instrument and only later used to shoot arrows.(wikipedia)

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posted 02-11-2006 03:46 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Steve-O-Gerst   Click Here to Email Steve-O-Gerst     Edit/Delete Message
Before about 1200 there really weren't many long bows in Europe at all. Short bows at that time would have been pretty common.

As for a bow being a musical instrument... I'd take Wikipedia articles with a grain of salt. Granted "bows" are used on violins, but a bow just doesn't make a lot of noise. More likely, the curved piece of wood, and string were used to start fires early on, and someone got to fiddling with it. Even that is doubtful though. A musical bow, a fire bow, and a shooting bow are so different in every aspect that using any of them interchangeably with any success is unlikely.

posted 02-13-2006 09:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Maria   Click Here to Email Maria     Edit/Delete Message
The long bow is first mentioned around 1150 and the first battle where it was widely used was the battle of Falkirk in 1298 (http://www.historicalweapons.com/bowandarrow.html)
Steve, you're probably right. My fault really, wikipedia states that as a probability...(still, take a look here http://www.nzinga.org.br/Sound/BERIMBAU.jpg

[This message has been edited by Maria (edited 02-15-2006).]

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posted 02-14-2006 06:43 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Steve-O-Gerst   Click Here to Email Steve-O-Gerst     Edit/Delete Message
Well, I'm no expert Maria, and sadly, I only speak English. You may know as much, or even more than I, but I don't take Wikipedia as gospel.

My opinion is based on a light smattering of using each kind of bow, often only once, and my use of Wikipedia Of course, I'd like to THINK I was right...

posted 08-01-2007 11:05 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ricky     Edit/Delete Message
Shortbows were used extensively until around the 13th Century (if you look at the bows pictured on the Bayeux Tapestry for example, they are all shortbows).

Evidence suggests that most/all nations used 'longbows'* - the big advantage that the English had was they used a LOT of bowmen together.

*Apart from those that used crossbows, which were just as powerful but required less skill to use. Their disadvantage was a much slower rate of fire.

All times are PT (US)

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