Crossbow bolts (‘quarrels’)

Introduction

Crossbow bolts (sometimes called ‘quarrels’) are a specific form of arrowhead, with a socketed shaft and relatively narrow, piercing blade.  They can have a variety of cross-sections, generally square, but also triangular and other shapes.  Few examples are recorded by the PAS as they are made of iron; many are known archaeologically from castle sites, such as Baile Hill, York (Addyman and Priestley 1977, 138; fig. 10).  Indeed, there is currently only one spanning hook on the database; there is one crossbow nut in bone or antler.

PAS object type to be used

Use CROSSBOW BOLT

Date

These are predominantly medieval  finds.

Examples

Medieval crossbow bolt (LON-94A1F4). Copyright: Museum of London; CC-BY-SA licence)
Medieval crossbow bolt (LON-94A1F4). Copyright: Museum of London; CC-BY-SA licence)

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Key references

Addyman and Priestley 1977