Bows Vs. Muskets in the Imjin War, part 2

More incidents from the Imjin War. These are taken from Firearms: A Global History to 1700 by Kenneth Chase. Bizarrely, Chase takes the typical position that bows were a superior battlefield weapon to firearms despite his book being full of evidence to the contrary. This quote by the Korean official Yu Song-nyong, for example, is … Continue reading Bows Vs. Muskets in the Imjin War, part 2

John Bingham- The Tactiks of Aelian, 1616

P24-27 http://name.umdl.umich.edu/A05855.0001.001 Archers haue alwayes beene of speciall esteeme for the field, and preferred before the other kindes of light-armed. Many nations haue beene commended for theire skill in shooting. Emongest the Graecians the Cretans were (of ancient time) sole archers, as Pausanias witnesseth. Yet was not theire service aequall with the service of the … Continue reading John Bingham- The Tactiks of Aelian, 1616

Martino Martini – Bellum Tartaricum, 1654

Unlike Polofox, who I posted earlier, the Italian missionary Martino Martini, the author of this history of the Manchu conquest, had actually been to China. He has little to say on the types of arms used, only this: Pages 16-18 But the City [Leaotung] was defended by exceeding many men, who generally were all armed … Continue reading Martino Martini – Bellum Tartaricum, 1654

Robert Barret – The Theorike and Practike of Moderne VVarres, 1598

Barret is another military writer critical of "inueterate conceirers of bowes and blacke billes". Barret asserts the superiority of the firearm over the bow, the corselet over the jack, and the pike over the bill (halberd). I have skipped over the sections dealing with the bill and jack. Pages 2-3 Gent. You haue touched many … Continue reading Robert Barret – The Theorike and Practike of Moderne VVarres, 1598

Raimond Fourquevaux – Instructions for the Warres

The translator of this discourse, Paule Ive, attributes the original French work to William de Bellay. Everyone else seems to attribute it to Raimond Fourquevaux. According to Wikipedia the original was published 1548. This translation dates 1589. Page 25-26 The Harquebusse hath bin inuented within these fewe yeares, and is verie good, so that it … Continue reading Raimond Fourquevaux – Instructions for the Warres

Jacopo di Porcia: The Preceptes of Warre

A military manual by Jacopo di Porcia. Some of the advice is obvious, some silly. This is a text transcription from EEBO. Translated 1544 by Peter Betham. 32. ΒΆ Of gonners on horsebacke. It shal not be vnprofitable to acquaynten and wount your horses, as the duchmen do, to suffer the sytter whyche is a … Continue reading Jacopo di Porcia: The Preceptes of Warre

Alonso De Contreras Witnesses the Accuracy of a Greek Archer

"I put the Greeks ashore, and went on my way with the caramuzal to the Arm of Mayna, which is not far distant. This Arm of Mayna is a district of the land which is in the Morea, a barren land, and its inhabitants are Greek Christians. They have no houses, but exist in grottos … Continue reading Alonso De Contreras Witnesses the Accuracy of a Greek Archer