In The Age Of The Trabuco

The Trabuco is one of the middle ages’ most used siege engines, and was designed to collapse the walls of fortress’ and castles’ during invasion. There were two types of Trabuco’s developed throughout history. The traction Trabuco made use of man power to quickly pull the sling on one end of the weapon’s beam to launch the contents of the packing device on the other end.

The traction Trabuco was later replaced on the battlefield by the counterweight Trabuco which functioned essentially the same as the traction version of the weapon with it’s main difference consisting of the counterweight mechanism on the end which once held the man powered sling. This mechanism allowed the Trabuco to by fired from a lever, increasing the weapon’s range and functionality, and sending it soaring in popularity among armies of the age.


It is commonly believed that the traction Trabuco originally saw development in China during the time of the Mongol invasions according to Qiang Shen a Chinese commander is thought to have developed a traction based Trabuco independently, though this is protested by the fact that two Persian developers were contacted to help with the further development of Trabuco’s for the Chinese military, indicating a previous knowledge of the weapon and it’s functions according to The Traction Trabuco moved west with the Avars, a nomadic Russian people, and was introduced to the Mediterranean, Europe, France, and Spain through trading.

When the Trabuco made it’s way to the Middle East, the design was improved upon to create the counterweight version of the weapon. In Europe the Trabuco took the name of the Trebuchet and saw extensive use as a means of warfare during rival kingdom scrimmages. The Trabuco would also see deployment during the Crusades, and be used as one of the world’s first germ warfare weapons, as both sides lobbed the corpses of those inflicted with the plague at one another. In Spain, and Brazil, the weapon gained it’s most popular moniker, the Trabuco, and was commonly used in a primitive shotgun like manner and loaded with various projectiles that were fired at once. In Brazil today, shotguns and big bored guns still hold the street slang name of Trabuco thanks to this ancient and devastating weapon.

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