Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bavaria, Germany - the center of 15th and 16th century gunmaking
You are doubtlessly right, Micke,
At least as far as formal and stylistic dating criteria are concerned.
With its overall proportions, especially the long and delicate tiller, plus the straight tiller trigger (trigger bar) which is rectangular still and does not yet show the rounded knee-like forward bow, the Straubing crossbow #2 indeed seems, in terms of period, very close to the general High Gothic style of around 1400, as depicted by Konrad Kyeser in Bellifortis, Eichstätt/Bavaria, 1405 (top attachment), the Köln crossbow W 1109, with his curved bow now finally mounted the correct way - although some museum people stilll are convinced it looked 'more authentic' before (in their inexpert eyes only), on a painting of ca. 1430 depicting a mounted crossbow man, and on a Bavarian painting from an altar piece, ca. 1420-25, whereas two miniatures in the Stundenbuch (book of hours) of Katharina von Kleve, ca. 1440, seem to represent a remarkably more evolved type.
On the other hand, this could lead to the conclusion that the Köln crossbow is even older - ca. 1370-80?!
Actually the facts probably were more or less the same as in all former armories, the Landeszeughaus Graz etc.: whenever a series of no matter what kind of weapons was ordered the pieces showed minor differences depending on whether an older fellow had kept and continued his obsolete style, or maybe a few younger working next to him had adopted the more recent style.
Would you rank the Straubing crowssbow now in the Jagdmuseum between the two others, or closer in style to no. 1?
Attachments appearing in the order referred to in the text.