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The Archer's Guide
By an Old Toxophilite, 1833.
Sketch of the ancient history of the bow

Archery practised from the earliest ages; to whom the invention was ascribed by the ancients; the bow frequently mentioned in Holy Writ; the expertness or the Persians and more Eastern nations in its use; the Turks and Arabians; the Ethiopians; the Alans, Huns, Dacii, Goths, and Vandals; the Scythians; the Grecians; the Romans; the Cretans; the Parthians; the Gauls and French; the Laplanders; observations on the effects of archery in ancient times; the shape &c. of bows of different nations

Sketch of the history of archery in england.

The Anglo-Saxons and Danes well acquainted with the use of the bow long previously to the Norman invasion; supposed by many writers to have been first introduced into England by the Conqueror; such a supposition incredible, and why; archery greatly encouraged by the Normans and from that period a constant exercise with the Britons; William Rufus slain by an arrow; archers in the army in the reign of Stephen; formed part or the English Infantry, and first introduced into Ireland in the reign of Henry II.; employed under Richard I. in the crusades, when 300 sustained the charge of the whole Turkish and Saracen army; some particulars of the history of "Robin Hood" and his companions, with remarks on their reported exploits with the long-bow; statutory enactments respecting archery in the 13th century the battle of Falkirk, in which the Scots were defeated by the superiority of the English archers archery at its zenith in the reign of Edward III.; battles of Cressy and Poictiers; Chaucer's description of an archer of that time; defeat of the Scots, reign Henry IV., by Lord Percy's archers; archers effective at the battle of Shrewsbury; the battle of Agincourt; exploits of archers in the reign of Henry VI.; the practice of archery enforced by Edward IV.; encouraged by Richard III. and Henry VII.; account of the exploits of some English archers and others, who accompanied the Earl of Rivers in an expedition against the Moors; military archery in use during the reign of Charles I.; and even after the invention of gunpowder; summary of legislative enactments respecting the bow, from the 12th century to the reign of Henry VIII.; establishment by that monarch of the Fraternity of St. George, now the Artillery Company of London; account of the origin of that association; Henry VIII. partial to archery as an amusement, and himself a good archer; meetings of archers during his reign, and accredited anecdotes; the battle of Flodden Field; Edward VI. fond of the exercise; the art still deemed important under Elizabeth and James I.; dress of an archer in the reign of Queen Elizabeth; Charles I. patronised the art, both by personally exercising it, and by legislative regulations; archery in comparative disuse during the Usurpation; revived at the Restoration; encouraged by Charles II.; but ceased to be used in war; still cherished as a manly exercise; sketch of the origin and history of the Royal Company of Archers of Scotland; general observations on archery and its effects previously to the invention of fire arms; its total neglect for many years; its revival as a fashionable pastime in 1780; titles of the principal societies of bowmen existing in 1792; the art much patronised for some years by the nobility and gentry of England; annual prizes given by the Kings (George III.) in Scotland, and the Prince of Wales in England; the exercise again disregarded; recent revival; its recommendations as an amusement

The art and practice of archery.


The different kinds of woods used in the manufacture of the bow; the self-bow; the backed bow; the handle, horns, and nocks of the bow; the length of the bow; of preserving bows;

Of the Bow-string, and Stringing the Bow.

Good strings indispensable, and why; the ancient bow-strings; what material now made; the eye and noose of the string; the nocking point; directions as to the mode of stringing the bow; the advantages of having "two strings to your bow;" of thick and thin strings; directions for forming the noose for the lower horn

Of Unstringing the Bow.

Directions for unstringing the bow


The figure, &c. of arrows, and the substances from which they were anciently fabricated; arrow-heads of the ancients; arrows now headed with Iron or steel, and not sharply pointed; "steles," what the term signifies: of what woods now made; the proper shape of arrows; their weight and length; the nock, pile, shaft, and feathers of an arrow.


The quiver, a concomitant of the bow from very ancient times; How made and used by the Greeks, Scythians, &c.; little used at the present day.


The bracer of what composed its size, use, &c.


Vary contrivances for guarding the fingers from the effects of the bow-string; the shooting-glove, what; finger-stalls, what; the tab, what


The belt and pouch, for what designed; the tassel, its composition and use; the grease-box, Its contents and purpose.


Ancient history of the target the butts formerly used in England; those now used, and low made; composition of the target; present mode of painting the circles; generally allowed average value of each circle; actual value, according to occupied space; how target-shooting is now conducted; distances for ladies and gentlemen, modes of counting the game.

Ascham's "five points of archery"

Ascham's "Five Points," viz. standing, nocking, drawing, holding, and loosing, considered, with practical observations on each movement.

General observations.

To attain skill in archery, theory met be backed by practice: young archers should not begin with bows beyond their strength . the first bow should be selected with judgment, and gradually be supplied by one of stronger power; the ordinary powers of bows used by healthy adults; of those used by ladies and boys; the length of arrows for ladies and boys; a learner should be perfect in the "points" before he commence shooting at marks; his distances should then be limited, and increased by degrees; the importance of observing a due elevation in shooting; taking aim; of the wind and the weather

The different kinds of shooting.

1. Roving
2. Hoyle-Shooting
3. Flight-shooting
4. Butt-shooting
5. Prick-shooting
6. Clout-shooting
Terms and phrases used in archery