How long were sling and javelin used?

Oct 2011
548
Croatia
I know that ancient and Byzantine armies fielded troops of slingers and javeliners as part of their military, but for how long / until when did sling and javelin remain important weapons, for skirmishers at least if not for line infantry?
 
Oct 2011
548
Croatia
Which country?
Generally in Europe. I know e.g. that Romans used sling as a weapon well into the Middle Byzantine period - possibly had something to do with them facing not-very-well-armoured Saracen raiders. IIRC, sling was also used quite long in Spain, though I do not know details.
 

Tulius

Ad Honorem
May 2016
6,510
Portugal
I know that ancient and Byzantine armies fielded troops of slingers and javeliners as part of their military, but for how long / until when did sling and javelin remain important weapons, for skirmishers at least if not for line infantry?
Both were fairly used during the Reconquista in the Iberian Peninsula, by both sides. At least until the High Middle Ages. The Javelin until the late Middle Ages. At least.

For instance, I recall a passage, about the conquest of Lisbon, in 1147, about the usage of slings, in the De expugnatione Lyxbonensi.
 
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Mar 2016
77
Germany
Slings and javelins were more backcountry weapons. At the battle of Najera 1367 the Spanish/English side allegedly faced Spanish troops on the Spanish/French side with slings and javelins. There is even a picture of the battle (in Froissart, I think) where a slinger is depicted (in full armor which is surely nonsense).

The Irish used javelins for long in their fight against English occupation and suppression. There is an English source from the 16th c. AD describing the javelin as an Irish weapon, with the remark that it is more an annoyance than an effective means, at least against armored people. Deduct from this.

Generally, who would use a crossbow, bow or sling if he could also use a firearm? So at least from the 16th c. AD onwards, with effective firearms and firearms drills, alternative weapons were no longer used. But slings seemingly remain common among civilians, there are sources from 17th c. AD Germany, complaining about youths who annoyed people with slings. :)
 
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