January 10th, 2014

Walking (or Riding) with Medieval Bows

There are many accounts and pictures of Medieval archers doing warlike poses and sticking folk with the business-end of their darts. What I need are the boring bits in between. How did the average archer transport their bows while riding, walking, or hunting (when they were not doing the shooting bits)? I have learned that the bows would be unstrung when not in use (or, that is another question-how soon do you string it before use and how low does that take?). I have googled to high heaven, and (this is REALLY embarrassing) I do have a PhD in history and have more books than I care to admit. But as a historian, I know the mundane stuff gets left out...as, apparently, it has here. I tried to find a pic of archers loitering, and only found one from Byzantium (with the bow strung, so that does not count!) I saw the entry on Mongolian bows on this site. I hope someone knows as much about carrying about western bows.

Since I can create my world, so I have some flexibility, but I am sticking as much as I can with European (particularly Anglo-saxon/Norman) norms. If you know any of the standard bow, long bow cross-bow transport equipment/carrying styles, I'll be grateful. Help, archers or folks in the SCA!