Today’s blog post is part two of the Archery for Writers series! In my last post I outlined the basics of shooting a bow in general—this time we’re going to learn about the longbow! Fantasy writers listen up, this was one of the most feared weapons in the middle ages, and was used by all the classes. It’s also important to note that the recurve bow was also around during that time, but the longbow was much more easy to manufacture, making it the weapon of choice in Europe.
(If you have any questions about archery terms while reading through this, feel free to refer to part one of the Archery for Writers series. At the bottom of the page is a mini glossary of words that should help clear up anything I say in Archer-ese).
Origins: One of the earliest mentions of the longbow was in AD 633¹ in the hands of the Welsh, when Offrid, son of king Edwin of Northumbria was shot by one. However, it was very popular throughout the middle ages, and forms of the longbow have been used all over the world for a very long time.
Something many of you may not know about me is that I’m an archer (one, that I might add, was flinging arrows years before Katniss). There has been at least one bow in the house for as long as I can remember, but my family didn’t do archery much. At age eleven I joined in a 4-H archery club with one of my friends and began to learn more about the sport, but at that point I didn’t really like it and took a year off. When I came back, I did 4-H archery every year until I graduated high school, and over that time I learned quite a bit.
That’s why I was puzzled to find how many misconceptions there are about archery when I entered the writing world as a published author. One blog post I’ve seen circulating Pinterest that says it’s a writer’s complete guide to archery isn’t completely accurate.
I’m not infallible. I don’t know everything there is to know about archery. But I thought I would offer what I do know (and what I’ve researched beyond that for this purpose) in a four-part series that deals with the three most common bow types: the longbow, the recurve bow, the compound bow, and how to shoot them all.
Today’s post gives you the rundown on proper bow-shooting techniques and safety. (After all, what good is a bow if you don’t know how to shoot it)? Even if your arrow-flinging character doesn’t really know how to shoot, you should, so you can say with confidence, “That was how not to do it.”
Welcome to Katelyn Buxton Books! I'm a Christian author and blogger, with a passion for writing stories that are not just enjoyable, but also lead people closer to Jesus. Feel free to look around, and enjoy your stay!