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Re: [SCA-Archery] Re: Iberian Crossbows

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  • J. Hughes
    Checking my notes the only citation I have to al Maqqari is for the quotation: Sultans, military officers, and even the common soldiers, followed the fashions
    Message 1 of 9 , Sep 25, 2006
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      Checking my notes the only citation I have to al Maqqari is for the quotation: "Sultans, military officers, and even the common soldiers, followed the fashions of the infidels; in time of war, especially, they wore a dress very similar to that of the Christians, their neighbours. They used likewise the same weapons, and, like them, were clad in mail, over which they threw a short scarlet tunic, in the Christian fashion. They fought on horseback with shield and spear, but knew not how to use either the mace or the bow of the Arabs; instead of which they adopted the crossbow of the Franks, and used it in sieges, or in marches, to defend the infantry from the attacks of the cavalry, for without that requisite they would certainly be defeated. However, we are informed by Ibnul-khattib that under the Merinite Sultans, who reigned at Granada, the Andalusian troops were again clad and armed in the real Arabic fashion; instead of the heavy steel helmet and thick breast-plate of
      their ancestors; they wore a slender head-piece, and a thin but well-tempered cuirass; instead of the huge spear with a broad end in the Christian fashion, they took the long and slender reed of the Arabs, and they substituted for the clumsy and ill-shaped Christian saddles the more military-looking and more convenient horse furniture of the inhabitants of Arabia."
      There is also a story of the death of Sancho Ramirez during the siege of Huesca in 1094. The account of al Maqqari gives it as his being stabbed with a dagger and the footnote says the Christian sources have him dying from an arrow. But there is no clue what these Christian sources are...

      I would appreciate if there are other references to crossbows in his book.

      Charles O'Connor


      Sol <fula_chris@...> wrote: > I have just had a paper proposal for a paper on Iberian crossbows
      accepted for the session of the International Congress on Medieval
      History next May. Now I just have to research it and write it. These
      things often get published.

      Felicidades. If I can be of any assistance, please let me know,
      though I suspect you are already well on top of the material. I'll
      keep my eyes open as I'm trolling through sources. I'm expecting to
      read al-Maqqari in the near future, looking specifically for as much
      info from Ziryab as possible (10 c. musician and fashion arbiter). So
      probably won't turn up much on crossbows there, but if I come across
      more military inventories I'll let you know. Of course I'm reading
      all translations at this point. Haven't learned Arabic.

      Please let me know if you turned up the folio page of the Morgan
      Beatus with the crossbow image.

      Looking forward to seeing the paper, if only in the proceedings.

      Sol





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