History and types of catapults

by pamelamc
Last updated 6 years ago

Algebra I

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History and types of catapults

History & types of catapults

Different Types:

A catapult is a machine that stores energy then quickly releases the energy to fire a projectile.

Krysta Kramer, Ivanna SenkowsiAna Pau Gomez and Pamela Mencos

The Ballista

The Mangonel

The Trebouchet


The Onager

Catapults have been essential to siegewarfare since antiquity. They started to developwith the greeks and romans time in 399 B.C. and they were first used in a war between Dionysius the elder was in a war with Cartage. Catapults as we think of them were introduced to Europe during the Middle Ages withThe Viking Siege of Paris (885- 6 A.C.) where they were used for protection against attcks in castlesor fortified walled cities. Catapults are an offshoot of the Crossbow. Over time crossbows got larger and largerand they were also developed by the chinese.They went from being ahand-held weapon to something called the Belly-Bow which were so large they had to be braced against a knight's belly.This made Catapults an essential. Catapults were used to launch missiles (many different objects were utilized) that were either launched directly at the wall to cause maximum damage to the fortifications or were launched over the wall to lay siege on the population within the protective walls they were also used to throw missiles at soldiers. Although ancient catapults don't exist today for practical purposes, many workable units still exist for museums or demonstrations.

The Onager

Is a catapult that was used as a siege engine in the Middle Ages. It could fling projectiles weighing up to 350 pounds (160 kg) at or into enemy fortifications. In 1984, the French engineer Renaud Beffeyte made the first modern reconstruction of a trebuchet, based on documents from 1324.

Was anancient missile weapon that launched a large projectile at a distant target. Developed from earlier Greek weapons, it relied upon different mechanics, using two levers with torsion springs instead of a prod, the springs consisting of several loops of twisted skeins.

Was a type of catapult or siege engine used in the medieval period to throw projectiles at a castle's walls. The mangonel threw projectiles on a lower trajectory and at a higher velocity than the trebuchet, with the intention of destroying walls, rather than hurling projectiles over them. It was more suited to field battles.

The Onager was a Roman siege engine that is a type of Ballista that uses a torsional force, generally from twisted rope, to store energy for the shot. The onager consisted of a large frame placed on the ground to whose front end a vertical frame of solid timber was rigidly fixed. A vertical spoke that passed through a rope bundle fastened to the frame had a sling attached which contained a projectile.



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