Thursday, March 10, 2011
Medieval Weapon’s Part Three
The Crusades, the construction of hundreds of castles and the massive spread of Christianity, all helped bring about a new form of warfare — Siege Warfare. These weapons were unwieldy and difficult to transport but boy, did they pack a punch. In a siege situation, the siege commander and engineers would determine the best strategy and more often than not use the trial by error tactic. Often it would take several shots to line up these weapons before ever hitting the target. I’m certain many of them overshot or undershot – killing their own men.
I’m going to cover the most famous siege weapons here, one post at a time: Ballista, Mangonel, Battering rams, Trebuchets, Catapult, Siege Tower.
I’ll start with the Ballista – an invaluable attack weapon – which resembled a massive crossbow. Using Tension, the design was made to aim huge wooden, iron clad darts or arrows which were powered by twisted skeins of rope, hair, or sinew - the ballista design was based on a huge dart-throwing machine. These darts were designed to penetrate and skewer the enemy.
Sure you could find all this info on the web yourselves but this is something I could read about all day! And it gave me something to blog about. I’ve compiled a list of links and books to learn more about the Ballista here: