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I believe there is no other contemporary description, I believe this has been said before. Don't you think those of us who argue over the size of the Welsh bow would seek out such other descriptions that are available, Even professional Historians only quote Gerald. However if you can find one I and I believe a considerable number of others would love to read it.I believe that too much emphasis's is being stressed on just one reference, and such references tend to turn up unreliable all too often. What I think should be done is if there is so much interest in the welsh bow is to hunt out every little bit of information possible and compare, there has to be something other than the geraldus quote...
In what way would it help you? You appear not to be interested.Even though I'm not against pursuing knowledge for the sake of knowledge,
it would be helpful if we know why we want to know the "normal" length of the Welsh bow.
You would have to decide on your arrow weight first but why don't you start making whitewood bows and doing trials on them? I suggest you don't make your usual shelf type arrow pass bows. Try a number of different styles, D bows and Flat bows, and let us know your results. Start long and shorten the bow up bit by bit, re-tillering as you go.I personally like to know the best way to make a whitewood selfbow
that is as short as possible but can shoot at least 180 yards.
Intrigued, can you supply a link or more data?Edit: What about the bow of the welsh Drystan? Or Tristan, although supposedly of cornish origin?
Sorry mate you have all the info we have, effectively the wheel is roundish, now go and make one.To me, the more interesting question would be
the usual cross-section profile and size of the Welsh bow.
With that information I don't have to reinvent the wheel
and adjust the length of bow to my need.
andWhen Oman writes conjecturally of a "short" bow, he is not necessarily referring to what we would consider to be a short bow and we should also remember that many subsequent readers and sources who selectively quote Oman all too often make the error of reading and passing on his conjecture as gospel.
I have to disagree with you over this, the sections from The Art of War in The Middle Ages, which concern the short-bow are on page 97 and are as follows :His speculative remarks about a "short bow" precursor, though reasonable in a very broad and long term context, is in narrower terms based almost entirely taking the Bayeux "tapestry" as being dimensionally precise with regard to showing archers and their equipment,
He uses the Bayeux Tapestry purely to compare the Norman archers bows with that of the English archer not to determine the size the bow used by the English Archer. The only conjecture in this passage is of the type of bow used by William's archers not the weapon used by the English archers..If we are to trust the Bayeux Tapestry – whose accuracy is in other matters thoroughly born out by all contemporary evidence – the weapon of William’s archers was in no way different to that already known in England, and used by a few of the English in the fight at Senlac. It is the short bow, drawn to the chest and not to the ear.
these are not conjecture but instead are a clear statement of his belief in the short-bow and how it was used. This belief is confirmed later in the same page when he says:already known in England, and used by a few of the English in the fight at Senlac. It is the short bow, drawn to the chest and not to the ear.
Which is a clear statement of his belief. Where and how he came to his conclusions of the use of this short-bow by the English is not explained in the essay.It is therefore rational to conclude that the weapon superseded by the arbalest was merely the old short-bow, which had been in constant use since saxon times.
andIf we are to trust the Bayeux Tapestry, the weapon of William’s archers was in no way different to that already known in England, and used by a few of the English in the fight oft Senlac. It was the shortbow, drawn to the chest and not to the ear.
As can be seen from a comparison of the texts Oman has removed the reference to the accuracy of the Bayeux Tapestry, and changed short-bow to shortbow, but otherwise the texts and their meaning remain the same.The conclusion is inevitable that the weapon superseded by the arbalest was merely the old shortbow, which had been in constant use since saxon times.
You are correct Oman did not make that "schoolboy error", in the copy of The History of the Art of War in the Middle Ages he actually states that Geraldiusdescribes the bows of Gwent as :Oman was classically educated and unlikely to make the schoolboy error of mistranslating "non tantum, sed etiam"
neither made of horn, ash, nor yew, but of elm: ugly unfinished-looking weapons, but astonishingly stiff, large, and strong, and equally capable of use for long or short shooting.
Anything is possible, we simply do not know, but as most if not all, "roman" bow finds are from eastern composite bows said to have been used by their eastern archer auxiliaries (?? hopefully if I am wrong someone will step in here and tell us about finds of Roman simple bows), the probability is small...could they have adopted a Bow of some sort from the invading Romans?