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Alain D.





Joined: 04 Jan 2009
Reading list: 5 books

Posts: 81

PostPosted: Wed 09 Jun, 2010 6:13 pm    Post subject: Period Archery Targets         Reply with quote

I've heard that medieval archers (in particular English longbowmen) sometimes used earth mounds encircled in a small ditch or "dry moat" from which the dirt was taken as archery targets. I've looked around and had trouble finding examples of such targets or hints about their construction. I'm wondering if anybody here knows anything about medieval archery targets that were used for war practice in Western Europe? I'm guessing different kinds were used and I'm wondering if different targets were used for crossbows?

Thanks
-Alain
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Tom King




Location: florida
Joined: 11 Sep 2009
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Posts: 422

PostPosted: Wed 09 Jun, 2010 9:35 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I've seen a few pictures of that style target. Check out The Medieval archer by Jim Bradbury. Pretty sure the're in there. As for construction, its a mound of dirt Big Grin
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Martin Wallgren




Location: Bjästa, Sweden
Joined: 01 Mar 2004

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PostPosted: Thu 10 Jun, 2010 1:08 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yesterday I read a paper on just this. According to this the mound is plausible but a more plausible target and stopper for arrows is a simple wall or mound of turf. It´s a little bit more stable and resistent to the weather. It can also present a vertical surface to the archers.
Swordsman, Archer and Dad
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Christopher H





Joined: 06 Mar 2008

Posts: 79

PostPosted: Thu 10 Jun, 2010 1:28 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Looks like decent information here: http://www.modaruniversity.org/Archery8.doc
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Iagoba Ferreira





Joined: 15 Sep 2008

Posts: 151

PostPosted: Thu 10 Jun, 2010 5:28 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks, Christopher, this will make the day of some archers I know Laughing Out Loud
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Mackenzie Cosens




Location: Vancouver Canada
Joined: 08 Aug 2007

Posts: 238

PostPosted: Thu 10 Jun, 2010 9:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I believe this may have been used by some Swiss crossbowmen : Happy


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Charles the Bold
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Alain D.





Joined: 04 Jan 2009
Reading list: 5 books

Posts: 81

PostPosted: Thu 10 Jun, 2010 9:51 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Haha Wink

Thanks for the posts guys, that's great information. That article is excellent, Christopher, thank you.

-Alain
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Glennan Carnie




Location: UK
Joined: 23 Aug 2006

Posts: 289

PostPosted: Thu 10 Jun, 2010 9:54 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Shooting at the butts seems to have been the common practice for military archery.

A butt was originally the mound of earth that built up at the end of a plough furrow, each time the plough was turned. As such they were one furlong (220) yards apart.

This distance seems to have been stipulated as a legal requirement in the 16th century.

Interestingly, 240 yards is a measure known as 'bowshot'; presumably implying that was the typical maximum distance for general shooting (that is, not flight shooting).
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Christopher H





Joined: 06 Mar 2008

Posts: 79

PostPosted: Thu 10 Jun, 2010 11:52 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

You guys are most welcome... it was just my google-fu that found it... the real thanks should go to the gentleman who spent the time and effort researching and writing it.
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