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post #121 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by globetrotter View Post
I wasn't arguing that it didn't take skill - I think I remember reading that the practice and training actually altered the shape of the shoulder bones, and I also read how boys would spend hours holding wieghts up to build the muscles needed to fire a bow.

what I said was that it was revolutionary in that men who were not knights were able to best knights - my understanding was the longbowmen were closer to the way soldiers are today - not born to it, and they didn't spend their whole lives as bowmen - they would train part of the week while growing up, and then spend a few years doing it, and then they would have other jobs, like farmers or (I believe more commonly) craftsmen. knights spent their whole lives fighting or training to fight, were part of a caste of warriors, and had arms that would be worht hundreds of thousands of dollars in todays understanding of value.

that is what I meant. not that it is on topic, but I stand by it.

and, yes, I understand that both the crossbow and the musket were inferior, but much easier to train with.


Knights were noblemen, they'd spend just as much time training as they would sitting around listening to shitty medieval music. Noble men had other duties as well, and I seriously doubt anyone could do what the longbowman did without serious daily training, at least as much as any swordsman. Olympians TODAY shoot 4 hours a day minimum to hit targets accurately at 70m with the latest equipment. Just imagine what the Yeomen had to do to accomplish the same.

The crossbow was so effective that the Vatican banned them in warfare.
post #122 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by SField View Post
Olympians TODAY shoot 4 hours a day minimum to hit targets accurately at 70m with the latest equipment. Just imagine what the Yeomen had to do to accomplish the same.
They were not accomplishing the same, of course. They did not rely on individual accuracy (how could they have?) but on bulk firing.
post #123 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by Étienne View Post
They were not accomplishing the same, of course. They did not rely on individual accuracy (how could they have?) but on bulk firing.

In closed position they fired with great accuracy, which happened once the enemy advanced beyond the initial volleys. Still, they were expected to fire 6-10 shots per minute at a designated place up to 220 meters away. To do that consistently is quite difficult and takes an enormous amount of skill.
post #124 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by globetrotter View Post
what I said was that it was revolutionary in that men who were not knights were able to best knights - my understanding was the longbowmen were closer to the way soldiers are today - not born to it, and they didn't spend their whole lives as bowmen - they would train part of the week while growing up, and then spend a few years doing it, and then they would have other jobs, like farmers or (I believe more commonly) craftsmen. knights spent their whole lives fighting or training to fight, were part of a caste of warriors, and had arms that would be worht hundreds of thousands of dollars in todays understanding of value.

It is not entirely unlike the introduction of the machine gun in WWI, mowing down waves of European aristocrats on horseback. The long bow, as used by the British, was the machine gun of the era (cheap, good distance, deadly).

The mold of the longbow wasn't picked up in other European nations in part for political reasons also. Taxes, relatively strength of nobles vs. crown, etc. From the mid-1200s, every able bodied man in England was supposed to at least have a bow. Later, Edward III decreed that archery was the only sport or game allowed to be practiced on holidays (and perhaps on Sundays?). Once the entire peasantry was armed, it provided a very simple check on the nobility. This is seen, by some, as the genesis of our Second Amendment 500-600 years later.


In the early 1980s over 100 Rennessance era English bows were found in a shipwreck, and some were destroyed in testing and still had over 100 lb draw weights (after sitting on the ocean floor for like 500 years). Replicas were made and usually the draw weights were about 160-180 lbs which is unheard of by modern standards. For comparison, the legal floor for deer hunting is 45 lbs, I competed with 50-55 lbs bows, 65 is pretty common, and only the largest archers I've ever met shoot bows with over a 70 lb weight. I think a few specialty bows have been made for African hunting (yes, a few Westerners have gone after Cape Buffalo with 75-90 lb draw weight bows). Historically, war bows have had heavier draw weights than hunting bows (and by extension, modern competition bows) but it means men were pulling nearly their own weight.

The fact that medieval-sized Anglos (of slightly smaller stature compared to 2008, but not that much) were able to draw bows of their own bodyweight or more is pretty mind-blowing. Skeletons of archers are often visibly deformed in the left arm and with lots of bone spurs.

I haven't even touched my bow in about 7 years
post #125 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyquik View Post
It is not entirely unlike the introduction of the machine gun in WWI, mowing down waves of European aristocrats on horseback. The long bow, as used by the British, was the machine gun of the era (cheap, good distance, deadly).

The mold of the longbow wasn't picked up in other European nations in part for political reasons also. Taxes, relatively strength of nobles vs. crown, etc. From the mid-1200s, every able bodied man in England was supposed to at least have a bow. Later, Edward III decreed that archery was the only sport or game allowed to be practiced on holidays (and perhaps on Sundays?). Once the entire peasantry was armed, it provided a very simple check on the nobility. This is seen, by some, as the genesis of our Second Amendment 500-600 years later.


In the early 1980s over 100 Rennessance era English bows were found in a shipwreck, and some were destroyed in testing and still had over 100 lb draw weights (after sitting on the ocean floor for like 500 years). Replicas were made and usually the draw weights were about 160-180 lbs which is unheard of by modern standards. For comparison, the legal floor for deer hunting is 45 lbs, I competed with 50-55 lbs bows, 65 is pretty common, and only the largest archers I've ever met shoot bows with over a 70 lb weight. I think a few specialty bows have been made for African hunting (yes, a few Westerners have gone after Cape Buffalo with 75-90 lb draw weight bows). Historically, war bows have had heavier draw weights than hunting bows (and by extension, modern competition bows) but it means men were pulling nearly their own weight.

The fact that medieval-sized Anglos (of slightly smaller stature compared to 2008, but not that much) were able to draw bows of their own bodyweight or more is pretty mind-blowing. Skeletons of archers are often visibly deformed in the left arm and with lots of bone spurs.

I haven't even touched my bow in about 7 years

Yes, and even those 70lb bows have triggers, and most people are using compounds, not recurve for hunting. It's unbelievable that they could have done that. Keep in mind that these were 6'6 ft (average) bows.

As for the edict you're talking about (Assize of Arms of 1252), its intention was to be able to raise an army quickly and cheaply at short notice. As a result, it provided a check on the nobility, but it really was not done with that in mind. It was indeed much more self serving for the crown than it was some noble gesture of independence and separation of powers.
post #126 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by SField View Post
its intention was to be able to raise an army quickly and cheaply at short notice. As a result, it provided a check on the nobility, but it really was not done with that in mind. It was indeed much more self serving for the crown than it was some noble gesture of independence and separation of powers.

Unintended consequences are a bitch. It wasn't intended to empower the peasants, but that's what it did.

In that era the crown was relatively weak anyway, and non-royal nobles wouldn't have minded being able to call on personal armies if needed. The British king was a vassel of France, and had trouble consolidating power over Scottish clans.
post #127 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyquik View Post
It is not entirely unlike the introduction of the machine gun in WWI, mowing down waves of European aristocrats on horseback. The long bow, as used by the British, was the machine gun of the era (cheap, good distance, deadly).

The mold of the longbow wasn't picked up in other European nations in part for political reasons also. Taxes, relatively strength of nobles vs. crown, etc. From the mid-1200s, every able bodied man in England was supposed to at least have a bow. Later, Edward III decreed that archery was the only sport or game allowed to be practiced on holidays (and perhaps on Sundays?). Once the entire peasantry was armed, it provided a very simple check on the nobility. This is seen, by some, as the genesis of our Second Amendment 500-600 years later.


In the early 1980s over 100 Rennessance era English bows were found in a shipwreck, and some were destroyed in testing and still had over 100 lb draw weights (after sitting on the ocean floor for like 500 years). Replicas were made and usually the draw weights were about 160-180 lbs which is unheard of by modern standards. For comparison, the legal floor for deer hunting is 45 lbs, I competed with 50-55 lbs bows, 65 is pretty common, and only the largest archers I've ever met shoot bows with over a 70 lb weight. I think a few specialty bows have been made for African hunting (yes, a few Westerners have gone after Cape Buffalo with 75-90 lb draw weight bows). Historically, war bows have had heavier draw weights than hunting bows (and by extension, modern competition bows) but it means men were pulling nearly their own weight.

The fact that medieval-sized Anglos (of slightly smaller stature compared to 2008, but not that much) were able to draw bows of their own bodyweight or more is pretty mind-blowing. Skeletons of archers are often visibly deformed in the left arm and with lots of bone spurs.

I haven't even touched my bow in about 7 years

i'm glad to see that you at least paraphrased and summarized some of the wikipedia stuff for us!
post #128 of 144
And added a thing or two. My bow is one of those newfangled compounds (release trigger, 70% letoff in weight at full draw, 4x magnification scope, hydralic stabilizers, carbon arrows, etc).
post #129 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyquik View Post
And added a thing or two. My bow is one of those newfangled compounds (release trigger, 70% letoff in weight at full draw, 4x magnification scope, hydralic stabilizers, carbon arrows, etc).

yeah well my dick is bigger than yours...



i need more alcohol.
post #130 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by LabelKing View Post
In the old days, a lot of middle-class and upper-class boys probably entered as officers since they went to certain prestigious military schools.

To become an officer in the FFL,you must come in the top 2% of the graduating class at St Cyr.In the same way that a commission in the Gurkas requires the top graduating position at Sandhurst.Until a few years ago only french citizens could rise to a commission through the ranks in the FFL but now a non- french citizen can rise to the rank of captain.
post #131 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by SField View Post
And yet despite all that the IDF remains one of the most effective armies in history.

What makes them one of the most effective armies in history? Who have they fought? Some poorly armed arabs? They are a good fighting force but one of the best in history is a bit of a stretch. I'd say the Viet Cong and the Afghan Mujahideen are way ahead of the IDF.
post #132 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by paraiso View Post
What makes them one of the most effective armies in history? Who have they fought? Some poorly armed arabs? They are a good fighting force but one of the best in history is a bit of a stretch. I'd say the Viet Cong and the Afghan Mujahideen are way ahead of the IDF.

Because they've come out on top in situations where their victories have been considered miracles by military authorities from Westpoint to Sandhurst.
post #133 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by SField View Post
Because they've come out on top in situations where their victories have been considered miracles by military authorities from Westpoint to Sandhurst.

I agree with SField on this. And how can you consider the Viet Cong better than the IDF? Or even the Muhjadeen? Both were good guerilla forces, but thats it.
post #134 of 144
Interestingly, on the subject of bow vs. firearm, I was just reading Alexander Rose's new book American Rifle. In that tome, he states that the American Indians were disdainful of the matchlook musket, but as soon as flintlocks became available, they immediately forsook their bows in favor of firearms. Within a generation, bows had become children's toys among the Indians. Likewise, when rifles became available, the Indians all wanted rifles and had no interest in smoothbores. In many ways the Indians were more eager to embrace new technologies than the whites.

I have always found it strange that so intelligent and resourceful a people as the American Indians subsequently proved so maladaptive after their conquest by whites.

Lest anyone accuse me of racism, I am part Mohawk.

I had a nice chat with Dr. Rose the other day. He is a former National Review staffer. What a delightful chap--an old Cantabridigian! We seemed to have much in common despite a 30 year age gap.
post #135 of 144
I believe Franklin raised the idea of arming colonists with bows (cheap, plentiful, rapid fire, etc). Didn't happen, of course.
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