What is the reason for doing anything? Seems to me that someone just liked the idea of a big bow. Perhaps in compensation, like a small bloke keeping a big dog. Who can say?
More sensibly, we know the "ceremonial" idea is almost a cliche, inventing fancy names like " baton de commandment" for what is most likely a stick straightening tool as if it were a sceptre. But senior men in the South Andaman Islands had bigger versions of the South Andaman bow, so big that Europeans named it a "display" bow, even though it was by no means too large to be shot canted.
And why should a senior man not have a bigger bow if that was his fancy? It does not have to be "ceremonial", just that other cliche, the "status item".
It's not as though the bow was new technology, but the reason for valuing size over performance does not have to be complicated and should need no explanation here.
Then again it might just have been an extreme example of a trend in bow styles.
I don't think we can call it a terrible design, just because it shoots more slowly than it might if the mass distribution in the limbs were to be improved, though it does represent an unrewarding trend in military terms and would not have matched the cast of any decent narrow stacked-section long bow with a decent limb taper, such as Otzi's.
In this context we might decide that it represents an unwise choice and expect that survival of a defeat caused by a lack of cast might then be expected to drive improvement of the design.
Last edited by Rod
on February 16th, 2013, 10:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
It's meant to be simple, not easy.