Projectile weapons

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Projectile weapons are weapons that are commonly hurled, shot, or otherwise propelled away from oneself toward one's foe for the purpose of damaging said foe.

Common examples are knives, franciscae, spears and javelins, which are thrown at a foe; and arrows and bolts, which are shot from bows and crossbows, respectively.

They may be further divided into two categories:

  • thrown or missile
  • projected or flung

Thrown Weapons

Thrown Weapons in the SCA

Some SCA kingdoms have rules about combat archery and thrown weapons in heavy combat, others do not.

A missile weapon is a weapon which throws missiles. This means that, generally, it does no harm in and of itself (being in simpliciter a delivery mechanism) but projects, in some way, a missile so as to do harm at a distance.

Projectile Weapons

In general they come in four varieties, all of which employ methods to store energy, so that it can be accumulated and then released to fling or cast the projectile.

  • A "bow", where the weapon tends to be long and pointy, the energy is stored in the equivalent of a bow-string, and on release the missile flies and (all being well) hits the target.
  • Energy is stored by twisting a cord or series of cords, which apply rotation to an artificial arm (much as muscles apply rotation to a cricket-bowler's arm) and project a generally roundish missile (a rock, bomb or dead and diseased cow) a distance.
  • A mixture of chemicals to produce an explosive mixture, which is placed at one end of a tube. A ball or bullet is then introduced into the tube, and when the explosive is ignited, the ball is thrown out.
  • Centrifugal force is used to accelerate an object to high speed and then allowed to escape a sling.
Weapons Type
bow bow
catapult rotation
musket explosive
sling centrifugal force


Projectile Weapons in the SCA

A variety of missile weapons can be used at SCA events. However, not all are allowed in combat.