IN the note, page 90, it is faid, that in order to fhoot their Bows, the Archers placed them on the ground.—The fame is afferted of the Indians, in the quotation from Arrian, at page 87, of this Effay.
The parts here referred to, are extremely obfcure as they ftand at prefent ; but a paffage from Quintus Curtius, which I by an overfight have omitted in its proper place, in a great meafure explains them. The hiftorian fays, " The Indians fhoot their Bows with more labour than effect, becaufe their Arrows, the force of which is principally on account of their lightnefs, are on the other hand of an unweildy load."—" Quippe telum, cujus in levitate vis omnis eft, inhabili pondere oneratur." Lib. 8. Ch. 9. Having mentioned thefe large Arrows, he in another place tells us,
"that on account of their weight, the Archer is obliged to reft his Bow upon the ground, while he adapts the Arrow to the String, and before he lifts it up to fhoot.—nec fagitttarum quidem ullus erat barbaris ufus: quippe longas & praeraves, nifi prius in terra ftatuant arcum baud fatis apte & commode imponunt.—Lib. 8. Ch. 14." This is very different from fhooting the Bow by placing it on the ground, as the before-mentioned authors intimate.
Of the Royal Company of Archers, in Edinburgh, See pg. 229.
THE practice of Archery being greatly decayed in Scotland, divers gentlemen, in the year 1676, affociated themfelves to reftore the fame, and to obtain Letters Patent to erect a Company for that purpofe: preparatory to which they drew up certain articles of the following tenor for their better regulation:?
- That a council, confifting of feven members of the fociety, be annually chofen, whereof to be prefident, who fhall make rules and conftitutions for the government of the company.
- The faid council fhall appoint three of the moft expert Archers to hear and determine all difputes and differences which may happen to arife amongft the feveral members concerning Archery.
- That the council conftitute a treafurer, fifcal, clerk and officer,—one beadle; and to provide books for recording the tranfactions of the fociety.
- That none be fuffered to practife the art of Archery within the city or fuburbs of Edinburgh, but freemen of the company; and. each perfon, before his admiffion, to undergo a trial, in refpect to his knowledge in Archery; and if approved, by the judges appointed for fuch trial, fhall be admitted into the freedom of the company, by a proper inftrument under the feal of the fociety.
- That certain perfons be appointed by the company to inftruct the inexperienced who defire to become members of the fociety, till they be qualified to undergo a trial, preparatory to their admiffion.
- That each perfon, at his being admitted a member of the fociety, to give a difcretionary fum of money, according to his quality, for the ufe of the company; and that all pecuniary mulcts and amerciaments be paid to the treafurer, for the ufe of the fociety.
- That public Butts be erected, either at the company's expence, or by donation from the town council, for the ufe of the fociety, which ftrangers fhall likewife have the ufe of without fee or reward.
- That a prize be provided at the expence of the company, (if one be not given by way of a prefent) to be yearly fhot for, to be prepared at the will and pleafure of the town council, whether a filvern Arrow, cup, or other piece of plate, and the folemnity to be obferved at after the winning the faid prize, to be in the faid council's option.
- That the company, or as many of them as fhall be fummoned by the council to fhoot, either at Butts or Rovers, for an extraordinary, or any public occafion, fhall be fure to attend, no excufe to be admitted for abfence, but ficknefs, or other lawful impediment.
- That the company have proper officers, with colours and drums, under proper regulations, with all neceffary accoutrements, and to be muftered once a-year, with the fociety's arms, or a fymbol in their hats or bonnets, and to perform fuch exercifes as the council fhall pleafe to order.
The above conftitutions were not only confirmed by the Privy Council on the 6th of March, anno 1677; but the commiffioner of the king's treafury, at the recommendation of the faid Privy Council, gave the company the fum of twenty pounds Sterling to purchafe the firft prize to be fhot for.
The company being by letters patent from Queen Anne, of the 31ft December, in the year 1713, erected into a corporation by the ftile and title of The Royal Company of Archers; applied to the Common Council of Edinburgh, for a piece of wafte ground on the weftern fide of the parliament clofe near Beth's Wynd, to erect: Butts on. The faid council, willing to encourage this laudable undertaking, not only granted their requeft, but, as a further encouragement in the year 1719, gave them the filver Arrow belonging to the city, to be annually fhot for; and on the 20th of May, anno 1726, confirmed the fame with additions of the following tenor.
- That the faid filver Arrow be fhot for at Rovers, in the Links of Leith, on the fecond Monday of the month of July yearly, at ten of the clock in the forenoon, if good weather; if not, to be fhot for on the firft fair Monday following.
- That notice be given on the laft Monday of June, and firft Monday of July, of the yearly fhooting for the city's Arrow, by beat of drum throughout Edinburgh.
- That none be admitted to fhoot for the faid Arrow, but the members of the company, who are ready and willing to admit all qualified perfons into the freedom of their company.
- That a fpot of ground of at leaft thirty ells fquare, round each mark be fet up for fecurity of the fpectators, and the Archers Arrows; and that none but the members of the company prefume to enter the fame during the time of fhooting, under the penalty of four pounds Scotifh money.
- He that wins the Arrow fhall keep it in his poffeffion till the firft Monday of the following month of April, on his giving fecurity to return it to the treafurer of the company, with his badge affixed thereto.
- That on returning the faid Arrow to the treafurer by the Winter, the dean of Gild to pay him the fum of five pounds Sterling as the prize, in lieu thereof.
- That a regifter be kept of the times the Arrow was fhot for, by whom won, the names and numbers of the Archers, who fhot for it, with thofe of the badges or fymbols appended thereto.
This Royal Company of Archers, confifting of the prime nobility, gentry, and other perfons of diftinction, on the yearly day of fhooting, are richly apparelled in the Highland drefs; and in their march through the city, form a very pompous proceffion, which not only attracts perfons of note from the diftant parts of Scotland to behold the fame, but many perfons of diftinction from the Northern parts of England refort hither on that occafion.
Maitland's Hift. of Edinburgh. Pg.323, Fol.
Page 241. The following account of Barlow being created Duke of Shoreditch, is given in the "Bowman's Glory".
"This noble king (Henry VIII.) at another time keeping a Princely Court at Windfor, caufed fundry matches to be made concerning fhooting in the Long-bow; and to which came many principal Archers, who being in game, and the up fhot given, as all men thought, there was one Barlo yet remaining to fhoot, being one of the king's guard ; to whom the king very gracioufly faid,—"Win them all and thou fhalt be Duke over all Archers." This Barlo drew his Bow, and fhooting won the beft. Whereat the king greatly rejoiced, commending him for his good Archery ; and for that this Barlo did dwell in Shoreditch, the king named him Duke of Shoreditch"
Bowman's Glory. Pg. 41.