R.J. Anderson (rj_anderson) wrote in little_details,
R.J. Anderson

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Longest practical distance to bull's eye with a medieval-style shortbow?

Setting is contemporary but it might as well not be, as my characters are working with homemade medieval-style bows (long for men, short for women) and arrows.

I have searched: medieval shortbow; what's the longest distance you can shoot accurately with a shortbow (and various permutations thereof); target archery women primitive; and various other searches relating to boy or women archers and homemade bows, a frustrating number of which gave answers relating to the distance of the longbow rather than the short bow. I also tried Maid Marian archery in case the Robin Hood angle yielded any more information, and looked at the article on Squidoo about Legolas's archery in the LotR films. All very interesting but not what I need.

What I want to know: assuming that the archer is a young woman weighing about 130 lbs. and standing about 5'8", who has been practicing regularly with a bow since childhood and is renowned for her archery skills, and that she is armed only with a homemade (though well crafted) shortbow and arrows and shooting outdoors -- what would make for a really impressive shot into the bull's eye, distance-wise?

And to narrow it down even further, would forty paces to the bull's eye be either too long to be likely, or too short to be impressive, using this kind of bow? Would thirty or fifty be better?

Thanks in advance to anyone who can help.
Tags: ~middle ages, ~weapons (misc)

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