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Re: [SCA-Archery] Re: More

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  • Carolus von Eulenhorst
    This puts an entirely different light on the matter. See below. Carolus ... What this tells us is that one remarkable event occurred at one instance in time
    Message 1 of 4 , Apr 29, 2005
      This puts an entirely different light on the matter. See below.

      At 03:43 AM 4/29/2005, you wrote:

      >--- In SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com, Carolus von Eulenhorst
      ><eulenhorst@e...> wrote:
      > > Thank you Kinjal. Are these works available in current
      > > translations?
      >+++ all or modern articles -- which is why I included the URL for
      >you to read. There are many other thoughts included about quiver
      >design, speed shooting, etc.
      > I also note that these are the accomplishments of particular
      > > champion shooters and not indicated to be representative of the
      >abilities of the general archer.
      >+++ I wished to leave you some fun 'of the hunt' here is further
      >data from the Russian article about the ... (citation previous)
      >Dr Gongor LHAGVASUREN
      >In 1818, G. I. Spasskii, the Russian scientist specialising in
      >Siberian studies, published in the newspaper "Sibirskii Vestnik",
      >the first information about the stone with oriental inscriptions on
      >it, found in a factory of Nerchinsk (Eastern Siberia). This stone
      >stele is the most ancient monument with the Mongolian uigarjin
      >script known as Chingis Khan's stone script. The inscription is
      >dedicated to Esunge, the son of Chingis Khan's brother Khasar,
      >although it begins with the name of Chingis Khan.
      >The stone stele was discovered in the basin of the river Kharkhiraa
      >which is the left tributary of Urlengui river flowing into the river
      >Erdene (Trans Baykal).
      >In 1832 the stele was removed from Nerchinsk to St. Petersburg, and
      >it is still in the Hermitage State Museum. There is no certainty
      >about the exact time of building of this monument, but the
      >scientists have reached a common opinion on the basis of the script
      >text meaning that it was written about in 1226.
      >Which event in the life of Khasar's son Esungge the Marksman led to
      >the erection of the stone monument? This question has drawn the
      >attention of many researchers.
      >One interpretation of this inscription could be as follows: "While
      >Chinggis Khan was holding an assembly of Mongolian dignitaries,
      >after his conquest of Sartaul (East Turkestan), Esungge shot a
      >target at 335 alds" (536m).
      >The text definitely informs us about sporting life in Mongolia in
      >this period. "While Chingis Khan was holding an assembly of
      >Mongolian dignitaries, after his conquest of Sartaul ...." shows
      >that the Mongolians celebrated their military triumphs by organising
      >traditional festivities (Naadam) called "three manly games"
      >including wrestling matches, archery and horse racing with the
      >participation of most vigorous wrestlers, the most eminent marksmen,
      >the fastest horses. To celebrate the conquest of Sartaul in East
      >Turkestan, Chinggis Khan organised on this occasion a big holiday
      >with a traditional sporting competition. This celebration was marked
      >by a remarkable event as recorded by Esunge the Marksman
      >having "shot a target at 335 alds".
      >This case illustrates the strength, accuracy and sharpness, physical
      >prowess of the Mongolians who lived more than 700 years ago. We must
      >even consider this inscription as a historic proof of the high
      >archery skills as well as its training methods and techniques in
      >Mongolia in this time.
      >+++ [I would underline the last for you if I could]
      What this tells us is that one remarkable event occurred at one instance in
      time by one individual. Nothing more. In fact that it was noted in this
      fashion indicates rather that this is a particularly unique event worth of
      special note. This is akin to someone reading our messages about
      Laochlin's remarkable achievement and using it as a basic to say all the
      archers of the SCA were capable of this.

      >At the same time, the '335 alds' target distance shot by Esungge,
      >when converted to the modern metric system, reveals an interesting
      >length. Ald is an old Mongolian measure equal to the length between
      >a man's outstretched arms. This length is deemed to match a man
      >(warrior) stature, so we may assume that 160 cm equalled one ald.
      >So, Esunge Mergen (the title given to him for his accuracy) hit the
      >target from a distance of about 536 meters.
      >1226 was thus the first time in the Mongolian sphere that a man had
      >hit a target from more than 500 m: the inscription is to prove the
      >Mongolian sporting record of the Mongolian marksman.
      Likewise pointing to its uniqueness.

      >The event is especially notable in terms of modern archery. We have
      >to recognize the impossibility of hitting a target from 500 meters'
      >distance, though it could be done by accident. However, the most
      >famous Mongolian archers often used to practice it successfully, and
      >there were several historic documents confirming the fact of high
      >performance of archers, who aimed and hit the 500 m targets.
      What are these documents? Saying something does not make it so. Especially
      in the popular press regardless of the stature of the reporter or the
      publication(Dan Rather comes to mind here).

      >+++ so,it would seem that shooting at such distances was common,
      >regularly practiced and by extention, useful in battle. You will
      >recall that the Mongolians did not use 'siege tactics' until after
      >they learned it from Europeans -- probably because they carries only
      >30 arrows. Later they would gleen enemy arrows from the field and
      >shoot them back -- hense my story reference. Therefore, the size of
      >the target may not be relevant -- what is important is that a known
      >objective, observable by spectators, was deliberately shot at
      >regularly at distances of 500 meters -- and occationally longer.
      The size of the target is very relevant because the original argument
      which needs support is that archers "regularly shot at small targets at
      great ranges". This is what needs to be shown, not that an individual
      happened to hit a target at long range.

      >Now -- what is critical, is that I found these articels with less
      >than an hour's research. There must be more -- so the 'lack of
      >documentation' of lond distance shoots wouldseem to be a lack of
      >effort, rather than material. I recognize that many SCAdians would
      >wish to limit activities to England and Western Europe (which would
      >be OK for the game) -- but claims about archery accuracy and
      >distance must include the entire medieval world ("as an educational
      >endeavor"). This is why it is perhaps unwise for some to make
      >universal type claims such as "no one could ever hit a faceplate at
      >300 yards" (last year) -- because then EVEN ONE piece of evidence
      >disproves the claim. I would fully support and participate in
      >research to determine the 'normal' limits of practice, exceptional
      >ability, and battle effectiveness for archery, but this would be
      >useless if people are not open to changing their preconceived
      >notions -- especially those created by 15th century "historians"
      >writing about 11-13th century practices. Why these are
      >considered 'valid' sources are beyond me, while sources from other
      >cultures are regularly disregarded.
      This was not the argument. Rather the argument was for the common practice
      of long range accuracy. On one questions that remarkable one time events
      occurred. I will also point out that the governing documents of the SCA
      state our purpose is the study of "pre-17th century western culture"
      . Within the scope of our charter then, this holds as much relevance as
      finding documentation that Martian archers could hit a crumb on green
      cheese on the moon. It is not our purpose to study the unique occurrences
      of eastern sport.

      >The above quotes are from a 'stone table' written at the time of the
      >event. I will take that against all of the regular sources written
      >with a 'long-bow is god' bias by historians 'paid' by the victor.
      >And I am Irish/German/Amerindian ;-)
      > kinjal

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