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Arne Focke
Industry Professional



Location: near Munich, Germany
Joined: 13 Mar 2006
Reading list: 34 books

Posts: 204

PostPosted: Mon 09 Nov, 2009 1:34 pm    Post subject: To fledge an arrow         Reply with quote

Lately i've been reading Azincourt by Bernard Cornwell.
I enjoy his detailed way of telling a story very much, as well as the effort he puts into his research. Once in a while you may stumble over mistakes here and there, but that never spoiled his storys for me.

In the above mentioned book i especially stumbled over on scene.
An archer is complainig that there isn't enough silk to fledge the arrows, so he has to use sinew instead. He ends up stealing silk from a church.

A question came to my mind: Why doesn't he just use linen thread? Always worked fine on my arrows.

I am curious about the thoughts of the experienced archers in the myArmoury community (as well as anyone elses).
There should be a few. Wink

So schön und inhaltsreich der Beruf eines Archäologen ist, so hart ist auch seine Arbeit, die keinen Achtstundentag kennt! (Wolfgang Kimmig in: Die Heuneburg an der oberen Donau, Stuttgart 1983)
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Jason Daub




Location: Peace River, Alberta
Joined: 14 Jan 2005
Reading list: 78 books

Posts: 162

PostPosted: Mon 09 Nov, 2009 7:51 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have no idea why the character would be made to insist on silk, I've used it and linen and cannot tell the difference. Another question is why is this archer fletching his own arrows? The British Crown would have supplied both the bow and the arrows, ready made from the south of England, the bow of imported yew and the arrows of ash from managed forests. The notion of a military archer making his own tackle just doesn't seem realistic.
'I saw young Harry, -with his bevor on,
His cuisses on his thighs, gallantly arm'd,-
Rise from the ground like feather'd Mercury,
And vaulted with such ease into his seat,
As if an angel dropp'd down from the clouds,
To turn and wind a fiery Pegasus,
And witch the world with noble horsemanship.'
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Jonathan Blair




Location: Hanover, PA
Joined: 15 Aug 2005
Likes: 9 pages
Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 487

PostPosted: Tue 10 Nov, 2009 3:55 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Perhaps this archer has to make a repair to some of his arrows. Or perhaps the author of the book hasn't a clue and figured it sounded dramatic, as this is a work of fiction. We all know how accurate historical fiction can really be. (wink wink, nudge nudge).

Linen works as well as silk and is a heck of a lot cheaper for an expendable object.

"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." - The Lord Jesus Christ, from The Gospel According to Saint Matthew, chapter x, verse 34, Authorized Version of 1611
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Arne Focke
Industry Professional



Location: near Munich, Germany
Joined: 13 Mar 2006
Reading list: 34 books

Posts: 204

PostPosted: Tue 10 Nov, 2009 4:00 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jonathan Blair wrote:

Linen works as well as silk and is a heck of a lot cheaper for an expendable object.


Exactly my thoughts. Happy

The archer in the story is just one of a small group set to the task of replenishing the reserve.

In my view the whole thing was just an excuse to get the characters into the church, since a pair of saints worshipped there play an important role in the story.

So schön und inhaltsreich der Beruf eines Archäologen ist, so hart ist auch seine Arbeit, die keinen Achtstundentag kennt! (Wolfgang Kimmig in: Die Heuneburg an der oberen Donau, Stuttgart 1983)
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M. Eversberg II




Location: California, Maryland, USA
Joined: 07 Sep 2006
Reading list: 3 books

Spotlight topics: 1
Posts: 1,435

PostPosted: Tue 10 Nov, 2009 4:58 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

For the sake of plot Happy

Or maybe he's a real high-brow killer Wink

M.

This space for rent or lease.
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Jason Daub




Location: Peace River, Alberta
Joined: 14 Jan 2005
Reading list: 78 books

Posts: 162

PostPosted: Tue 10 Nov, 2009 7:56 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I can understand the reasons why the author used this as a plot device, I am just tired of Bernard Cornwell a bit perhaps. I purchased and read his Saxon series and the Grail quest as well as Azincourt recently and came away thinking, hmm, viking Sharpe, oh, and Sharpe with a longbow, and Sharpe with a longbow again?
'I saw young Harry, -with his bevor on,
His cuisses on his thighs, gallantly arm'd,-
Rise from the ground like feather'd Mercury,
And vaulted with such ease into his seat,
As if an angel dropp'd down from the clouds,
To turn and wind a fiery Pegasus,
And witch the world with noble horsemanship.'
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Glennan Carnie




Location: UK
Joined: 23 Aug 2006

Posts: 289

PostPosted: Wed 11 Nov, 2009 4:54 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jason Daub wrote:
I can understand the reasons why the author used this as a plot device, I am just tired of Bernard Cornwell a bit perhaps. I purchased and read his Saxon series and the Grail quest as well as Azincourt recently and came away thinking, hmm, viking Sharpe, oh, and Sharpe with a longbow, and Sharpe with a longbow again?


My sentiments exactly.
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Lafayette C Curtis




Location: Indonesia
Joined: 29 Nov 2006
Reading list: 7 books

Posts: 2,689

PostPosted: Fri 13 Nov, 2009 5:46 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Maybe the archer is allergic to linen? Wink

Anyway, "plot necessity" seems to be the most plausible answer here, regardless of how (im)plausible the scenario in question is. I certainly enjoy Cornwell's HYW series a great deal less than I enjoyed his Sharpe and Arthurian stuff.
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