7,5 Archery Facts That Will Surprise You

Here you will see listed some really cool archery facts that will surprise you. So, if you ever want to amaze your archery friends or simply learn some cool facts about archery start reading.

Below you have the main points of the article listed so you can read them right away.

7 Surprising Archery Facts Are:

  1. Archery is over 50.000 years old
  2. The Mongolians had a specially designed arrow designed to cause psychological damage to the enemy
  3. There is a world-class archer able to shoot a bow with no arms
  4. William Shatner promoted the first-ever compound bow
  5. 90.000 arrows were fired in one minute at the battle of Crecy
  6. Archery was not allowed in the Olympics between 1920 and 1972
  7. There are 10 million archers in the U.S. alone

1. Archery Is Over 50 Thousand Years Old.

The oldest signs of archery were found in Africa. In the Sibudu Cave in modern-day South Africa, they found bone arrowheads that were dated to be over 60.000 years old!

Arrowheads from the Sibudu cave

They are of course not fancy by modern-day standards. But it serves to show that the cavemen invented the technology of bows and arrows long before we first thought of it as possible.

The second similar finding wasn’t in Africa but in Srilanka in the Fa Hien Cave. The arrows there weren’t 60.000 years old but 48.000.

It goes to show that archery had a pivotal role in the development of modern-day humans. It helped us hunt bigger animals from safer distances.

On to the next one.

2. Mongolian Arrow That Was Designed To Cause Psychological Damage

The Mongolian whistling arrow was an arrow used by the Mongols which produced a whistling sound when fired. This was used on the battlefield to strike fear in the enemy. It was also used in hunting.

The Mongolian whistling arrow

I find this one to be really cool. The whistling arrow was made by hollowing out the tip. So, as the arrow was fired air went through the holes of the arrow tip and moved through the arrow. Thus producing the whistling sound.

As you can see by the picture above, its purpose was not to cause physical damage but rather to strike fear on the battlefield. Imagine a thousand arrows fired on you and as they move the arrows start whistling. It does mess with your mind a little.

So it’s a cool trick. The whistling arrows were well known in Asia but the Mongols made them famous.

3. This Archer Can Fire A Bow With No Arms

This is such an inspiring story and a badass one as well. How do you fire arrows with no hands? If you thought there was no way, then think again.

Mark shooting arrows with no arms

Matthew Stutzman. An archery legend. The man holds a record for the longest accurate shot in the world. Did I mention he has no arms? Yeah, the man is an Olympian to boot having won a silver medal in the 2012 Paralympics.

Here is an insight into his championship-level mentality.

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

Matthew Stutzman

A lot of archers would do well to adopt that kind of thinking. Here is a short youtube video introduction to this amazing addition to the archery family.

Now on to the next surprising archery fact.

4. William Shatner Promoted The Very First Compound Bow

It is safe to say that a good portion of you reading this are nerds, Which is awesome, so am I. So, you are likely familiar with “Captain Kirk”. The actor William Shatner.

He was an avid archer in his younger days.

William Shatner promoting the compound bow

The creator of the compound bow tapped Shatner because of his fame to promote his new invention. So, William Shatner played a role in helping to Fastrack the adoption of the compound bow thus changing archery as we know it forever.

And he looked cool doing it.

5. 90.000 Arrrows Were Fired In One Minute At The Battle Of Crecy

During the medieval battle of Crecy between the French and the English. It is estimated that the English longbowmen fired up to 90.000 arrows in 60 seconds. The English had around 8.000 archers on their side and if each of them shot 12 arrows in one minute (which was the norm in their age), they had fired a combined number of 90.000 arrows in a minute!

Depiction of a medieval battle

Imagine seeing the hail of arrows blackening the sky. It must have been terrifying. At least they fought in the shade.

6. Archery Was Not Allowed In The Olympics

Archery has had a weird history in the Olympics. Having first been introduced in the 1900 Paris games, Archery at first only had a handful of nations participating in the sport. But even with the smaller number of nations, there were problems.

The issue was that archery had no uniform set of rules across every nation. This means that every archer practiced under their own set of rules in their country and when they went to compete they competed under different rules.

This was problematic, and after the Olympic games of 1920 in Antwerp Archery was no longer present in the games until the 1972 Munich games.

By then, international archery organizations were set up which standardized rules across nations and allowed for archery to be reintroduced into the Olympic games.

And it stayed there ever since.

7. The U.S. Has Over 10 Million Archers!

This will probably surprise you. So make sure you are seated. There was a study done by the Archery Trade Association in 2015 showed there were around 10 million archers in the U.S. Compared to a study done a few years before that there has been an increase in archery’s popularity in the U.S.

You can see more details in this article where I detail Archery’s popularity and which form of archery is the most popular.

7.5 The Medieval Machine Gun

This one is pure genius. I am talking about the repeating crossbow which originated in China. Technically it can not be classified as a bow, hence why I placed it as “,5” but it’s so cool you just have to see it.

The repeating crossbow

The premise is simple. The self-repeating crossbow has a cartridge of 10 arrows. By manipulating the handle you see above the user could fire the 10 arrows in rapid succession toward the enemy. It was the equivalent of a machine gun in those days.

The big drawback was it lacked range and speed. This means arrows were often laced with poison so that even a little prick of blood could prove fatal.

In Conclusion

I hope you enjoyed this little list of cool archery facts. I had fun doing them for you.

If you wish feel free to continue reading by checking out this article on the 7 most famous archers from history. Just click here.

Take care

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