Archery’s Ancient History

It has been some time since this author posted a link to an article about archery. Today’s piece cites the evidence demonstrating how archery helped man build, destroy, and then reconstruct civilization time after time. Even though it is outclassed by the modern firearm, the bow still enjoys intense use by modern recreational shooters and hunters.

Will the bow ever go out of style? If you read my story Halcyon in Cirsova’s Summer Special, then you know my opinion on that, readers. The more things change, the more they stay the same. While it is a better weapon by far, the gun is not always available or easily constructed. The simple bow, on the other hand, can be built relatively quickly by someone who knows what they are doing.

Along with the article, let me quote Fred Bear: “The history of the bow and arrow is the history of mankind.” Wherever men go, the bow goes with them. Like the knife, it is a tool as old as time, and just as practical. Whether the year is 2019 or 4019, the bow will be among the weapons in man’s arsenal.

Click the link below to learn more, readers:


May 3, 2017 | Scott Einsmann | News

When you pick up a bow and shoot arrows at targets, you’re practicing a skill that goes back thousands of years into human history.

In fact, Fred Bear, a forefather of American bowhunting, said, “The history of the bow and arrow is the history of mankind.” Archery can be traced to about 64,000 years ago, when simple bows and arrows played a major role in our species’ survival. Archery equipment helped humans hunt more efficiently and become apex predators. The bow and arrow also functioned as deadly weapons of war. Today, however, archery is all about recreation, and it’s enjoyed by people worldwide, whether they bowhunt or shoot targets.

Let’s take a glimpse at archery’s fabled history.

62,000 B.C.

The oldest known evidence of archery is a collection of 64,000-year-old stone points found in South Africa’s Sibudu Cave. The well-preserved arrowheads still hold traces of bone, blood and glue. Yes, ancient archers used glue to fasten arrowheads to arrow shafts, a technique still used today.

The researchers outlined their finding in “Antiquity,” an archaeology journal. In the report, they wrote, “Hunting with a bow and arrow requires intricate multi-staged planning, material collection and tool preparation, and implies a range of innovative social and communication skills.”

10,000 YEARS AGO

A good example of those skills is a spectacular display in Valtorta Gorge, Spain, where intricate cave paintings show people hunting animals with archery gear. A bow from this period, the Holmegaard bow, was found preserved in a Denmark bog. Aged at 7,000 years, it’s the oldest complete bow that archeologist have recovered. Its design is so efficient that hobbyist bow-builders today often replicate it.

Read more…

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