Yunnan beats Shanghai to win archery gold at Chinese National Games

October 22nd, 2009 Comments off

At the 11th Chinese National Games in Qingdao, east China’ s Shandong Province, Oct. 22, 2009. Yunnan beat Shanghai to win the gold in this event.
Photos: Xinhua/Yang Shiyao

Yunnan team members celebrate after the women’s team final of archery

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Chinese Ancient Archery

October 18th, 2009 3 comments

Archaeological discoveries proved that archery in China dates back 20,000 years. Practical archery takes three conditions: a bow strong enough to propel arrows, arrows that are sharp enough to kill, and a technique to ensure the stability of arrows in fight. The bow and arrow in ancient China fully met the three conditions. Archaeologists have unearthed finely made arrowheads in a site of the Paleolithic Age in Shanxi Province, and could be mounted on a shaft. No bow was found at the site, since bows were usually made of wood, bamboo and perhaps tendon of animals and could not remain intact for so many years. But the arrowheads were enough to prove the existence of bows.

Chinese ancient archery

As for how to keep the arrow stable in flight, Kao Gang Ji, the earliest work on science and technology in China, writes under the item of The Archer: “Decide the proportions of the shaft to install the feathers.  The feathers at the end of the shaft are installed in three directions, and then the arrowhead is mounted. An arrow thus made will not lose its balance even in strong winds.” It also says, ”When the feathers are too many, the arrow will become unstable.” Later on, ancient Chinese develop bronze arrowheads and the crossbow, upgrading archery to a new height.

Magic Shot Outside the Military Camp

October 8th, 2009 Comments off

yuanmenshejiYuan Men She Ji (Magic Shot Outside the Military Camp)

Yuan Shu sent 100 thousand troops, led by General Ji Ling, to attack Liu Bei. For fear of Lü Bu in Xuzhou who might lend Liu a hand, Yuan wrote Lü a letter, together with many food supplies as gifts, asking him not to help Liu. Liu, on the other hand, wrote lüa letter asking for assistance. “If I remain an onlooker with folded arms,”thought Lü, “I will be in danger after Yuan defeats Liu. But if I help Liu, Yuan will be be resentful to me.” So Lü invited both Liu Bei and Ji Ling to a banquet.

Lü sat between Liu and Ji at the banquet. After a few rounds of toasts Lü began, “Please grant me a favor by stopping the fight.” When Ji Ling refused, Lu shouted for his long lance to be brought over. Both Liu and Ji got a fright. “I’ll stand my lance 150steps away outside the gate. If my arrow h its its edge you two will stop your fight. And if I miss the target you have your own way.” Ji secretly hoped that he would miss the target, while Liu crossed his fingers wished Lu succees. Lü and wine brought up to him. After each one had a cup Lu arched his bow, aimed and shot with a big shout. The arrow flew like lightening toward the target, and hit right on the edge of the lance. A big applause rose from everybody around. Lu dropped his bow and laughed, saying, “You see, even the heavens wish that you stop fighting.” With his excellent archery, Lü averted a fight between the two sides.