our new museum

Six Geese a-Laying

Arrow Fletching

Arrow Fletching

Although none of the actually fletching (the feathers) has survived on the thousands of examples recovered from the Mary Rose, but Toxophilus: The Art of Shooting, written in 1545, states that that goose feathers were the best ones for fletching, so it’s likely that ours used them too. The glue that was used in their binding has survived on a lot of them, though, and you can see where the silk thread was wrapped, holding the fletching in place.

 

Incidentally, the term “Cock Up” , sometimes claimed to be based on the incorrect positioning of the cock feather, a grey or black feather used to make positioning the arrow easier, didn’t mean a blunder until 1948, so probably has nothing to do with archery.

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