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Semih Koyuncu




Location: Turkiye
Joined: 23 Oct 2013

Posts: 15

PostPosted: Sun 20 Apr, 2014 10:27 am    Post subject: Identifying Ottoman Crossbows (Zemberek)         Reply with quote

Hi all,

Below pictures are from Edirne (Adrianople) Military Museum. Just ignore the bows of them since museum authorities placed normal hand bow and in wrong direction. Could someone identify and date those? They seem like quite unique. I have never seen such crossbows before.

https://fbcdn-sphotos-d-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-frc3/t1.0-9/s720x720/304986_4512678624881_1983273157_n.jpg

https://scontent-b-fra.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn1/t1.0-9/p480x480/946424_10201253640492892_1503741137_n.jpg

https://scontent-a-fra.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/t1.0-9/q71/s720x720/1044469_10201253727615070_1223963122_n.jpg

https://scontent-a-fra.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn1/t1.0-9/q71/s720x720/1011182_10201253730815150_1040468467_n.jpg

Thanks in advance.
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Robert MacPherson
Industry Professional



Location: Jeffersonville USA
Joined: 27 Feb 2008

Posts: 141

PostPosted: Sun 20 Apr, 2014 12:21 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have never seen anything like them either. The shape of the tillers (stocks) suggests the 19th century to me.

I will point some crossbow enthusiasts in this direction.

Mac

Robert MacPherson
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Robert MacPherson
Industry Professional



Location: Jeffersonville USA
Joined: 27 Feb 2008

Posts: 141

PostPosted: Wed 23 Apr, 2014 5:28 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Semih,

We have a bit of discussion going on about these bows here http://thearbalistguild.forumotion.com/t1206-...bows#11291

Thanks for posting the pics!
Mac

Robert MacPherson
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
Joined: 15 Mar 2004
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PostPosted: Wed 23 Apr, 2014 5:55 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yes and some museum person assembled the prods on backwards, as mentioned by someone in the linked comment thread.

Does look very 19th century to me and mostly for some sort of sports target practice or maybe hunting ?

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Semih Koyuncu




Location: Turkiye
Joined: 23 Oct 2013

Posts: 15

PostPosted: Thu 24 Apr, 2014 12:12 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Robert MacPherson,

Thanks so much for your effort. I am already following that forum and topic too.

Now, it seems they are dated to 19th century as few others suggested. Pictures are belong to someone from archer group in Facebook and according to he the bows are have no relation with tillers.Even though he tried to warn museum authorities about direction of bows, they complained about lack of enough space in glass case. Apparently, museum personnel just put some ordinary bows on stocks without knowing they did it in wrong way. So while thinking about crossbows the bows should be dismissed.

Thanks again for answers.
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Lafayette C Curtis




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

Posts: 2,652

PostPosted: Mon 28 Apr, 2014 1:04 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Interesting nomenclature, since I've only heard "zamburak" being used for camel-mounted heavy muskets (or small swivel guns), although there's some interesting speculation that these weapons originated from earlier camel-mounted crossbows. I wonder if there's any etymological link with the Ottoman crossbows (which seem to be personal rather than crew-served weapons)?

(The closest I've found is an old dictionary entry: http://www.bibliomania.com/2/3/260/1293/20296/1/frameset.html )
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Semih Koyuncu




Location: Turkiye
Joined: 23 Oct 2013

Posts: 15

PostPosted: Tue 29 Apr, 2014 11:46 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

While talking about weapons terminology could be very confusing but it is not the case here. Taybugha Al-Ashrafi Al-Baklamishi Al-Yunani in his The Complete Manual of Archery for Cadets written in 1368 mentions "zanburak" as a heavy type of crossbow which throws heavy bolts. Also, an earlier source Ibn Bibi in his memoirs covering between the years 1192 and 1280, while writing about Saljuk history mentions both "zanburak" and a lighter version "carh". So it is quite understandable for Ottomans to use Turcified version, "zemberek" for crossbows. One startling point is that in modern Turkish crossbow is called "Tartar bow". Although I tried hard to find when first appeared this nomenclature but failed to find something satisfying. Yet, I think it is result of modern Turkish language revolution.
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