How to besiege a castle in a storm

The siege of a castle

The Blide - also known as Trebuchet or Tribock - was a catapult that could cause the worst devastation (photo 2). It was the largest throwing weapon in the Middle Ages and with it the projectiles landed very accurately on the walls and roofs of a castle.

A Blide was mostly made of wood and had a loop on a long lever arm that was loaded with the bullets. A fixed counterweight (weight box) was filled with stones, earth or lead.

The Blide worked on the principle of lever throwing and could throw projectiles of up to 270 kg. Sometimes the cadavers of dead animals and faeces were thrown onto the castles with the Blide - with the intention of transmitting diseases to the castle or contaminating the food.

Another important offensive weapon was the wooden one Siege tower. It could be driven up to the curtain wall and had a drawbridge at the top that was lowered to the battlements.

Before using such a siege tower, however, the moats and any existing pitfalls had to be overcome.

With the Giant crossbow (Ballista), a throwing machine that was already known to the ancient Romans, wooden arrows could be shot with an iron point (photo 3). In this weapon, a strand of twisted ropes was used to let the limb snap up against a wooden beam and thereby catapult the projectile away. The force of the arrows shot in this way was very violent.

After that Gunpowder was invented, the first came when a castle was attacked Cannons for use. Heavy iron balls or stone balls were fired with them.

First was gunpowder, which was always in one for safety Powder horn was kept, filled into the cannon muzzle. After placing the bullet on it, the gunpowder was set on fire. The cannonball was fired at the castle as a result of the subsequent explosion.

Not all of these first cannons were particularly accurate, but when the cannonball reached its target, it wreaked havoc on a castle complex.