~ Medieval Weapons ~
- Siege Weapons -
The trebuchet had a range of up to 300 yards, which meant that it could
easily clear a castle wall from a fairly safe distance. The threat of
this weapon led those designing castles to thicken walls and even create
artificial lakes to surround the castle to keep such weapons at a distance,
as was the case at the Welsh castle of Caerphilly. However, the range
capability of the trebuchet was shorter than that of the longbow. Thus
the Gynours, those operating the trebuchet, always worked in great danger.
The trebuchet had a long arm affixed to a pivot. The pivot would not
be centered along the long arm but placed towards one end of the arm,
so creating an uneven see-saw effect. For the counterweight trebuchet,
a very heavy weight would have been attached to the shorter end of the
lever-arm, while a sling which was to carry what was to be hurled by
the trebuchet was attached to the end of the longer end of the lever-arm.
The shorter weighted end would be dropped and because of the great gravitational
pull on the weighted end, the longer end with the sling attached would
be raised with substantial speed and force.
Trebuchets - continued