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Digital Subscriptions > History Revealed > Christmas 2016 > How Did They Do That?

How Did They Do That?

The ultimate Ancient Greek war machine - a moveable siege tower

Q&A

HOW DID THEY DO THAT?: THE MACEDONIAN HELEPOLIS AND CATAPULT

Known for their famed king, Alexander the Great, the Macedonians were militaristic people. They built the helepolis, a mobile weapon that broke down a city’s defences and walls, while protecting its own soldiers. Armed with catapults, it fired stones or incendiary bombs at beleagured targets, as in the Siege of Rhodes.

THE CATAPULT

There were various types and sizes of catapult. They were fitted with a bow, which used tension to work.

HEAVY ARTILLERY The Ancient Greeks were the inventors of the catapult

LAUNCH

Levers applied tension to a bow, which, once released, drove a spoon-shaped arm forwards. A horizontal bar stopped the arm, leaving the object to shoot forwards and destroy its target.

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The Christmas 2016 issue of History Revealed.
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