This page is positively dripping with trebuchet images, but you'll need to turn your graphics on..
The Grey Company
Trebuchet Page

Welcome to The Grey Company Trebuchet page.
Here you'll find a lot of pictures and a few words about these amazing pieces of "leverage artillery" - strange machines referred to variously as trebuchets, traction trebuchets, perriers, petrarias, war wolves, coulliards, bricoles or even "the witch from whose head the ropes hang like hair".
Some of the page is devoted to providing background information into how trebuchets were used "in anger" in times past - while other parts of the page celebrate the joy of using them today as a wonderful sporting toy.     I hope you enjoy it all...


 
The Trebuchet Page Index
 
Counter-weight Trebuchets Traction Trebuchets Grey Co's Siege Engines Simulators Historical Reconstructions
Tiny Siege Engines Historical Asides Cartoons Links "Odds and Ends"
 

 

Counterweight Trebuchets
 
Historical Counterweight Trebuchet Pictures This is a page of illustrations of trebuchets from 14th to 16th century sources.
These are not modern reconstructions but drawings made when the machines were in use. Brief notes and opinions accompany each picture.
How Do Trebuchet's Work? Something to get you started ... a little simplified information to give you an idea of how a trebuchet works and what the various parts are for.
This page will be expanded soon to provide the more advanced trebuchet fan with a little "real world" refinement to the original "Getting Started" approximations.
Trebuchet Triggers A look at a bit of a mystery - how were trebuchets triggered?.
We look at some of the pictures from the Grey Co Trebuchet collection of trebuchet images - hunting for clues as to how the medieval siege engineers made machines weighing tens of tonnes loose their missiles on command.

Traction Trebuchets
 
Traction Trebuchet Spotting Visit the "Traction Trebuchet Spotters Page" - an introduction and guide to the various parts, workings and types of historical traction trebuchets.
Historical Traction Trebuchet Pictures This is a page of illustrations of traction trebuchets - the human-powered siege engines that appeared before the weight-powered ones. The traction trebuchet is also known as perrier, petraria and petrobole (all meaning "rock thrower").
As above, these pictures are not modern reconstructions but drawings made when the machines were in use. Brief notes and opinions accompany each picture.

Grey Company's Siege Engines
 
Grey Company's Artillery Welcome to "The Treb Files", the nearly-complete record of Grey Company's own little Artillery Section.
This collection of pages shows photos of our experiments, successes and, yes, our many embarrassing failures.
The Artillery pages cover our traction trebuchets, counter-weight trebuchets, slings plus the little models and prototypes. As other machines get finished, or at least photographed, they will join the existing rogues in the gallery.

Simulators
 
Trebuchet Simulators Mathematical models for Virtual Hurling.
There are some very good computer simulations out there that allow the would-be trebuchet builder to avoid many of the worst trial-and-error pitfalls. Here are a few links to some of the world's best virtual trebuchets.

Historical Reconstructions
 
Denmark's Medieval Centre Photographs supplied by the Danish Medieval Centre showcase their inspiringly big and beautifully reconstructed siege engines... plus a link to their own home page.

Tiny Siege Engines
 
Tabletop Trebuchets Now part of the "Grey Company's Artillery" section, this page contains photos of half-a-dozen of the little machines.. Cheesechucker, Son of Cheesechucker, Tiny, Magog base, Wonager and Tea-trolley.

Historical Asides
 
Cortez's Trebuchet? Have you heard about the attempt by Cortez's conquistadores to use a catapult against the Aztecs? Was it a trebuchet? How much do we know and how effective was it?
Read a soldier's account written by someone who was there - Bernal Díaz - plus get a reference to read his whole story on paper.
Robert the Bruce's Trebuchet Not all trebuchets were "all conquering"... and not all sieges were of epic proportions.
Read about the siege of Carlisle in 1315 - a tale of unrewarded effort.
Cheesechucking Crusaders A very brief comment in a 13th century history of a king and saint reveals that French knights were not above amusing themselves with a little tabletop artillery. Odd humour in a medieval military camp from Joinville's "History of Saint Louis".
Trebuchets in the 6th Century Byzantine accounts of stolen state secrets and of traction trebuchets used by Avar and Avaro-Slavic forces at the sieges of Appiareia in the year 587 and Thessaloniki in 597.
Artillery at the Siege of Acre (1191) Snippets from Crusader and "Saracen" descriptions of the besieging Crusaders' artillery - and the effective counter-bombardment by the city's defenders - at the siege of Acre in 1191.

Cartoons...
 
Siege Engine Cartoons??? What you get when you combine an interest in siegecraft with an inclination towards odd visual humour

Links & Further Reading
 
The Links Page A comprehensive and sorted links list with short reviews of most of the trebuchet and catapult activity on the web.
This site is frequently up-dated - often from readers' suggestions.
Britannica Search Search the on-line Encyclopaedia Britannica reference.

"Odds and Ends"...
 
Leonardo da Vinci's Hurling Machines Leonardo turned his hand to investigating, sketching, designing, inventing or improving just about everything. Among his military studies are, as you might expect, a number of machines for throwing things.
Here are a few...
   
Please read the Safety Reminder
To return to the top of the page...


A Brief Safety Reminder:
This might be stating the obvious, but trebuchets were weapons of war designed to knock down buildings, seriously kill people and absolutely ruin someone's day.   ...   In short, they were very, very dangerous.
Without proper care and planning even toy machines can hurt you - whether you are the operator or a bystander. Dropping weights, rising beams, swinging slings and creaking frames make for wonderful theatre - but don't let yourself get in the way.

- Please Be Careful -


On no, not them again...  
If you have a question - or just want to talk trebuchets - here is where to contact the
Trebuchet Crew. (Generally friendly, occasionally helpful, usually talkative...)
 
The mighty Black Budgie,    emblem of The Grey Company  
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To see the many other things that members of this unusual and active club do please visit   The Grey Company   web page.
 

 
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Russell