Discussion in 'Military History' started by W.G.Ewald, Sep 23, 2013.
From Turkey to Korea... everywhere it is made the same way...
In ancient India, before the Mughals arrived, similar composite bows were made, but instead of horn, a bamboo-wood-bamboo sandwiches were used.
Using 3 finger draw in a composite bow is a bad idea... enough to make your fingertips numb after a few shots and to make permanent damage to nerves in the long run. A thumb draw needs to be used. Also, since this bow was made for fast shooting, the arrow rests over the thumb, not the index finger.
The famous indian longbow which used to be fired by pivoting it with foot support was the deadliest ever. It was known to pierce the best of the armour worn in those days and Alexander was one of the persons who tasted the power of this bow in the battle.
I have one of those from the North-Bengal Rajbangshi clan. It uses a thin strip of bamboo instead of the chord. It has a 100kg (220lb) draw weight at 30". Those archers had to be body builders, a bloody pain to shoot for people like us.
If you ever come to Delhi, meet me. I will tell you the trick as to how it is fired and you will find that it is very easy and no effort at all as your entire body strength thru your spine goes into it. The bowmen always fired it at from the rightside of the horserider as the horserider had very limited pulling distance while firing to his right his mongol bow. So the Indian longbowmen cud take them out from much larger distance and also fire multiple well directed and aimed arrows while his own leftside was covered by the body armour and his shield. The impact of the long thick and heavy arrow was such that it wud knock of the rider from his mount in case it failed to pierce his armour and kill him.
How powerfull was the arrow can be judged from the fact that war horses used to take multiple hits from arrows before dying but just one such arrow killed the horse of Alexander.
And yes, the length of the bow was directly proportional to the height of the archer for Indian longbow. Taller the man, longer the arms, larger was his pivot thru legs and so much more was the energy of the arrow. The mongolians were short people and so cud never use such huge bows.
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