7 Most Famous Archers From History

In this article, you will discover the 7 most famous archers from history. Their achievements, their life, and why they deserved the title “great archer”. Their achievements range from having an actual impact on history to achieving archery feats very few could ever hope to replicate. So, keep reading to discover the most famous archers from history.

And in the case of the archer that has no arms, it is just inspiring to read what can be achieved when the will is strong enough. We will first give you a list of all the famous historical archers.

So, here is the list of the most famous archers from history.

7 Most Famous Archers From History Are:

  1. Howard Hill (The Worlds Greatest Archer)
  2. The Mongol general Jebe (a loyal general to Ghenghis Khan)
  3. William Shatner (Captain James T. Kirk)
  4. Matthew Stutzman (the archer with no arms)
  5. Lieutenant Colonel Jack Churchill (WW2 officer that used a bow in battle)
  6. Minamoto no Tametomo (a Samurai that reportedly sank a ship with an arrow)
  7. Lars Anderson (master archer of incredible skill)

Now, that you have seen the list. Let’s continue by exploring life and the incredible things these people were able to accomplish. In the case of the Mongol general Jebe, you will see how his skills with the bow almost saved millions of people.

And of course, the crazy cool things master archer Lars Anderson is able to do.

Here is the first of the famous archers.

Howard Hill – The Worlds Greatest Archer

Howard Hill (1899-1975) was an American Archer of great skill. He began practicing archery at a very early age. Since he was a very outdoorsy person he practiced a variety of sports but kept an interest in archery through his formative years.

As an archer, he was exceptionally versed in all branches of archery. He was a superb archer in target archery, flight shooting, and bowhunting. As a bowhunter, Howard Hill really made his mark. There is a picture of him next to an elephant he hunted with his bow.

Howard Hill – “The Greatest Archer In The world”

The man took down an entire elephant with one shot!

I know, not everyone is a fan of bowhunting but you can not deny, that hunting an elephant takes a significant degree of skill.

Other Significant Archery Accomplishments From Howard Hill

  • He won 196 archery competitions in a row.
  • He published two books on bowhunting “Wild Adventure” and “Hunting The Hard Way”
  • Advised as an archery consultant on several archery movies
  • Performed a trick shot where he shot an apple or prune from the top of someone’s head at distances of up to 60 feet

Obviously, there is no way to measure if someone is “the world’s greatest archer” it was likely a marketing ploy to garner fame and attention in that era. But it is obvious that his skills were incredible. And for that reason, he was inducted into the Archery Hall of Fame in 1972.

He is without a doubt one of the most famous archers of history.

Jebe – The Mongol General That Could Have Changed History

Jebe the Mongol Commander – Famous Archer From History

Jebe was one of the best Mongol commanders that fought under Ghenghis Khan. Some call him one of the best cavalry commanders ever. So, how does he fit in the picture here? How does he earn the title of a famous archer from history?

The story goes that Jebe whose real name was Zurgadai was a member of a rival Mongol tribe that opposed the rise of Ghenghis Khan in his early days. And in one of the battles, Jebe fired an arrow that wounded Ghenghis Khan in the neck.

Obviously, Ghenghis survived and even won that battle. After the battle, he found out who wounded him in the neck and proceeded to induct him into his army and even gave him command of one of his armies. He then proceeded to help expand the borders of the Mongol Empire using the tactics of horse archery.

This part is amazing when you think about it. If his arrow actually managed to end Ghenghis Khan’s life, that would have radically affected the course of human history. Marco Polo might not have made it to China if there was no security over the vast distances from Europe to Asia that the Mongols provided.

Could the Islamic Empires have survived and continued protecting the knowledge they discovered? Would have Ottomonas risen up if there were strong Kingdoms around them to squash them?

How many millions of lives would have been saved from the Mongol rampage if Ghenghis was stopped there?

It is amazing how things would have changed if that one shot with an arrow would actually find its mark.

For being one of the greatest generals in history and because Jebe had the potential to change world history he deserves the title of one of the most famous archers in history.

William Shatner a.k.a. Captain Kirk

William Shatner and the Compound Bow

Being a nerd myself. I just love this factoid. William Shatner was actually an avid archer. So when the inventor of the Compound Bow needed someone to help him promote his new invention Shatner was naturally the best pick.

You can see in the above picture Shatner is demoing the early version of the compound bow. As he was in his Captain Kirk heyday, the compound bow was often marketed as “space-age” while he was holding it.

A clever marketing move and it helped spread the benefits of compound bows. So, it is definitely the reason why Shatner deserves to be on the list of most famous archers from history.

And cmon it’s Captain Kirk, he just had to be on the list.

Matthew Stutzman – The Archer With No Arms

This guy is a legend. A true badass in every sense of the word. And the ultimate demonstration of why obstacles can be overcome. You can see the picture below and know exactly what I mean.

Matthew Stutzman Being A Badass

As you can see, he has no arms. Yet he is able to compete at official championships and shoot very well. How well you might ask? He holds the record for the world’s longest most accurate shot in the sport of Archery.

His mentality can be summed up with this quote:

“What can I do today to improve upon yesterday?”

Quote from Mark Stutzman

To see more from his story check out this short 3:22 video below.

That’s the reason why he deserves the title of one of the most famous archers in history.

Now on to the next badass archers on our list.

Lieutenant Colonel Jack Churchill (1906-1996)

This man is a legend. He is the only known person to have taken out an enemy soldier with a bow and arrow during WW2 while fighting in France.

As a young man, he was the outdoorsy type, learning to ride his motorcycle and learning unique skills such as playing the bagpipes and using a sword and a bow.

In fact, during the pre-war years, he learned to use the bow and arrow to such an extent he represented Britain in the world Archery championship in 1939.

To us, these are useless skills in times of modern warfare but not to him. He is quoted as saying:

“Any man that goes into battle without a sword is improperly dressed”

Colonel Jack Chruchill

As you can see his nickname as “fighting Jack” or “Mad Jack” is well deserved. To see an even more detailed explanation of his life and crazy adventures, one of which includes storming an enemy beach with an extended sword, check out this video.

As you can see, he clearly deserves to be named on the list of one of the most famous archers in history.

Minamoto no Tametomo

Minamoto no Tametomo was a Japanese samurai that loved between the years 1139 and 1170. He is proven to be a historical person. However, his archery achievements were likely exaggerated throughout history.

One of his archery achievements is supposedly sinking an entire ship by piercing its hull, just below the waterline with an arrow.

I am all for a good story, but this seems a little far-fetched to me. Putting that one specific story aside, he was known to be a powerful archer with one arm being longer thus enabling longer draws and of course more powerful bows.

His story has a rather sad ending. After the rebellion in which he participated ended, the opposing side actually cut the tendons in his arm thus eliminating his ability to do archery.

Shortly afterward he committed ritual suicide. As sad as his life story is his achievements during his lifetime have endured throughout the centuries. Thus clearly earning him a spot on our list of most famous archers from history.

Now, on to our next famous archer from history. This one is a modern-day wunderkind able to do incredible feats using a bow and arrow. And he clearly demonstrably shows what can be achieved with a bow and arrow.

Lars Anderson – The Master Archer

Lars Anderson is a master archer that regularly demonstrates his skills on his youtube channel. Among other things he:

  • Shot 10 arrows in 4.9 seconds. He achieved this by holding the arrows he was about to shoot in the same hand as his bow. It is an ancient bow-shooting technique that dates back thousands of years.
  • Was able to make an arrow turn mid-flight. He fired an arrow and then the arrow changed directions mid-flight. You can see how to curve your arrows mid-flight in this article here.
  • Shot accurately shot a target, while blindfolded. See the video below for proof.

As you can see what he does is almost sci-fi level. Definitely do not recommend doing this at home. But for his amazing trick shots and videos that help spread the word on the sport of archery he deserves to be named a famous archer from history.

In Conclusion

There you have it. We went through our list of 7 famous archers from history. You saw archers with stories that inspire you, badass people who fought in wars using a bow. And of course in the case of the Mongol general Jebe an archer whose arrow could have saved millions of people and changed world history forever.

If he was just a few more inches closer to his target.

Thank you for taking the time to read this article. if you wish to continue learning I suggest taking a look at my article on 7,5 archery facts that will surprise you. Just click here and it will take you to the article.

Take care

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