The Bow



The bows used in the Middle Ages were of several types: short-range bows, compound bows and long-range bows. Short-range bows measuring between 1 and 1.20 meters in size, and were fairly simple to manufacture and handle. They were the type of bow used most frequently. They had a medium-range, accuracy and strength, and required a good experience and a perfect training so that their use would be effective.

Composite bows were originating in Asia. They were formed by sheets of wood tied together. The sheets turned them into powerful bows, but required greater strength and training. This relatively short bow was the favorite weapon of archers riders, mainly from the Mongols and other Asian people who were specialists in horse riding. A variant of the composite had outwardly curved ends (which was achieved by heating it to steam and curving the blades during the manufacturing process). This curved bow was more powerful and required a high degree of strength and dexterity.

Long-range bows originated in Wales, and from there went to England. Almost two meters long, manufactured from a single piece of wood. Long-range bow arrows were up to a meter long. The wide-tipped arrows could penetrate the leather armor, causing lacerations, and were used to combat infantry. Also, there were arrows of narrow tip that penetrated the Mesh or Dickies and fired against the armored warriors.

To shoot long bow successfully, it was necessary to have enough training and practice. Men skilled in this type of weapon could shoot six well-directed arrows per minute. This kind of bow could reach targets at long-range and was quite powerful. Numerous contingent of experienced archers were a devastating force in many of the battlefields of the Middle Ages. They could fire both individual arrows and a rain of arrows towards a particular area.


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