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31 Mart 2015 Salı

WHAT IS THE BALLISTA ?

BALLISTA: An ancient heavy missile launcher designed to hurl javelins or heavy balls on the principle of a crossbow. The smaller ballista was just that – a basic, large crossbow fastened to a mount. It was also used to hurl iron shafts, Greek fire, heavy darts, etc. during sieges. The huge, complicated Roman ballista, however, was powered by torsion derived from two thick skeins of twisted cords through which were thrust two separate arms joined at their ends by the cord that propelled the missile. The largest ballistas were quite accurate in hurling 27 kg (60-pound) weights up to about 450 m (500 yards). The catapult was yet another machine used for firing bolts and other arrowlike missiles. The two terms are often used interchangeably. [balista]

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