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7947Re: [SCA-Archery] What constitutes a period bow?

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  • Bruce R. Gordon
    Jan 2, 2002
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      I haven't done detailed research in the area, but I have wandered through
      some sources. Nothing that I've seen suggests that flatbows were common
      in Europe within period. I agree that the technology precedes period
      (vide Holmegaard, etc.), but it seems not to have had much influence
      I've never heard of a period ELB as a composite, except perhaps in the
      riser. Composites were known, of course; Huns, Mongols, Turks, they all
      built composite bows - you find that sort of thing wherever archery is
      regarded as useful, but ready sources of wood are scarce. And in any
      event, hickory is a New World wood.
      All of which tends to beg the question, of course. If you are trying to
      build a bow for an Arts-and-Sciences competition, you will need to hit
      the books very thoroughly, and then build a classic yew or ash longbow
      with a "D" section (if you are doing a Western bow - an Eastern
      horse-bow can use all sorts of materials, of course). But for use in
      Period Division shoots, you will be held to a less rigorous standard.

      Forester Nigel FitzMaurice (Mid)

      jameswolfden wrote:

      > I was wondering what the different kingdoms consider a period bow. It
      > seems to me that there is a dearth of period documentation on the
      > different tiller of self-bows used in England and Europe. I might
      > speculate that the Welsh elm bow was a flat bow rather than an
      > english long bow but I can't find much documentation that actually
      > describes in detail its shape and tiller.
      > Would you consider a flat bow period? Would the shape of its handle
      > make a difference? I tend to associate the narrow handle to be a more
      > new world influence but bows like the holmegaard and meare heath show
      > the style existed pre-period.
      > Would you consider a hickory-backed ELB with horn nocks period or
      > would you demand documentation that showed that the english used
      > composite materials in their bow?
      > How period do you have to be to be period?
      > James Wolfden
      > Lions Gate
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