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The Crossbow

Its Military and Sporting History, Construction and Use

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This unique exploration of a weapon used for centuries will fascinate historians and enthusiasts alike. The crossbow, probably introduced to England by the Norman invaders in 1066, was once considered so barbarous that it was prohibited as a "weapon hateful to God and unfit for Christians." Sir Ralph Payne-Gallwey, an accomplished engineer, here describes military and sporting crossbows and their dimensions, components, and ranges; provides hard-to-find information on crossbow construction; gives details about modern crossbows such as bullet-shooting crossbows and bolt-shooting crossbows; and peeks at unusual crossbows like the Chinese repeating crossbow. Comprehensively illustrated with original drawings and selections from historical manuscripts, this is a necessary reference book for anyone who hunts with a crossbow or collects or studies weapons of the past.