[pro-player type=”mp4″]http://camcrew.co.uk/uploads/Trebuchet Demonstration.m4v[/pro-player]
A trebuchet is a siege engine that was employed in the Middle Ages. It is sometimes called a “counterweight trebuchet” or “counterpoise trebuchet” in order to distinguish it from an earlier weapon that has come to be called the “traction trebuchet”, the original version with pulling men instead of a counterweight.
The counterweight trebuchet appeared in both Christian and Muslim lands around the Mediterranean in the twelfth century. It could fling projectiles of up to three hundred and fifty pounds (140 kg) at high speeds into enemy fortifications. Occasionally, disease-infected corpses were flung into cities in an attempt to infect and terrorize the people under siege, a medieval form of biological warfare.
The trebuchet did not become obsolete until the 13th century, well after the introduction of gunpowder. Trebuchets were far more accurate than other medieval catapults.
The Medieval Siege Society’s Trebuchet is a one third version of the full sized siege engine, here you can see it being demonstrated at Ryslip