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Re: Period Fletching

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  • rolf_hobart
    I consulted my illumination library, and can confirm that arrows depicted in the Hours of Catherine of Cleves have multi-colored fletches. The fletches are
    Message 1 of 9 , May 18, 2008
      I consulted my illumination library, and can confirm that arrows
      depicted in the Hours of Catherine of Cleves have multi-colored
      fletches. The fletches are white, blue or red, some of which are
      spliced. "Traditional" triangle cut as well as parabolic shapes are
      depicted. The relative length of the fletches is impossible to
      determine since the artistic scale of the arrows is not realistic.

      Rolf Hobart


      --- In SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com, "Cian of Storvik"
      <firespiter@...> wrote:
      >
      > I can't find the image of catherine of cleves, but I seem to
      remember
      > that the fletches weren't only in color, but they were spliced as
      well
      > (two differen't colored feathers mated together).
      > Arthur C Doyle wrote a poem "the song of the bow" where he uses the
      > line "so we'll all drink together to the grey goose feather and the
      > land where the grey goose flew". There's been a bit of debate about
      > what goose is "The" grey goose, and leave that to another
      discussion.
      > There are fletchers in England that will sell you "grey goose"
      > feathers. Goose feathers are not as rigid as north american turkey
      > (the european goose is quite a bit smaller then the american turkey
      > too), and the former are not regarded as highly as the later which
      is
      > why turkey dominates the market.
      > The grey goose feathers I've seen tend to be a brownish grey, but
      as
      > you read in ascham's description posted; he postulates the
      difference
      > between using white, black or grey feathers.
      > Must illustrations from the 13th to 15th centuries show archers in
      > combat with traditional cut feathers (triangle cut), such is the
      case
      > in the Zamora tapestry. But illustrations like the Lutrell psalter
      > where the archers are at the butts, have what look to be parabolic
      > feathers, as do the arrows in the hours of catherine of cleves.
      > Another period example to refer to (atleast for English arrows)
      are
      > the mary rose finds (circa 1554). No fletches remain, but I seem to
      > remember reading that the remnants of fletching tracks could still
      be
      > seen on the steles that indicated that fletches were from 6"-12" in
      > length and had an offset. They must have a had very short trim if
      > they were that long, of course the points and shafts were much
      > heavier then what we typically use, and the bows were much heavier
      as
      > well so the drag may not have been as bad as what I'm thinking.
      > If you want to make arrows look like late medieval English arrows,
      > then I would suggest you add binding to the shaftment like this:
      > http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2299/2491239618_9e349a41d5_o.jpg
      >
      > the arrow on the top is a 40# ash barreled shaft with a nock drawn
      > on. The bottom arrow is a 55# cedar tapered shaft with a horn nock
      > insert. Both are bound in irish linen (I think #50).
      > Cian of storvik
      >
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