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Old 29th March 2013, 09:30 AM   #42
thinreadline's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Wirral
Posts: 1,034

Originally Posted by fearn
Hi David,

I suspect you're overgeneralizing a bit. Certainly, !Kung and Pygmy bows are weak. However, there are reports of Liangulu "Elephant bows" that pulled over 100 lbs. Saxton Pope, a prominent English Archer, visited Kenya in 1925. He challenged a Wakoma archer to a friendly distance contest. Pope at first used a yew longbow and a (light) flight arrow. The Wakoma outshot him, using his hunting bow and a heavy hunting arrow. Pope then switched to the heaviest bow he owned, and managed to outshoot the Wakoma (still using his hunting rig) by ten paces, at which point he called a halt to the contest. (Traditional Bowyer's Bible, vol. 3, which is most of what I know about African bows).

I'd say that, before WW2, there was as much diversity in African bows as there is in North American bows. There were big bows around. We're just lacking samples for this website. So far.



Precisely so , whilst the argument for smaller weaker bows in a forests is sound , the evolution of longer more powerful bows for game hunting in grassland savannah was essential in an environment where cover is scarce and a greater killing range was needed . This is seen the world over , except perhaps in nomadic horsemen who with the advantage of speed could get so much closer to game without the same need for stealth ... the smaller bow being more convenient when on horseback.
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