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aryangoku92
Nov 23, 2004

by Lowtax


This one time a Roman army attacked the Greek colony of Syracuse, which at the time housed the famous inventor Archimedes. Instead of following the great Greek philosopher tradition of sitting there and taking it up the rear end from an invading force, Archimedes invented a series of insane defense devices that scared the poo poo out of the invading Roman force, to the point that the defenders would only have to wave a plank and a rope from the city walls to send the nearest Roman invaders scurrying for safety.

It's probable that the majority of the defensive engineering machines in Syracuse were run of the mill things like catapults and trebuchets, but there were definitely some more interesting things in there as well. Such as the Archimedes' Claw, which may or may have not worked something like this:



It was basically a huge pulley, designed to raise a Roman trireme up from the sea and drop it down again, with all of its crew of some 200 men inside. This in effect made it impossible for the Roman navy to carry out an amphibious assault on the city during the two-year-long siege. This chart gets bonus points for having the Roman innovation of a trireme-mounted siege tower depicted there as well.

There's also a widespread myth about Archimedes using a series of mirrors to light Roman ships on fire, using a configuration something like this:



They tested it on the hit TV-series Mythbusters some 2220 years later and concluded it can not have actually worked, though. They did manage to light a ship on fire from a distance of about 100 feet, but it required the ship to actually stay stationary for 10 minutes, and using things like flaming arrows would have ultimately been more feasible to do that.

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edward said is gay
Jun 21, 2008

by Fistgrrl


what about those giant hook ladders the romans put on their boats to ease boarding enemy ships but so threw their own ships off balance that they lost their entire fleet on the way to cartage?

did those rock?

Hysterical Woman
Nov 26, 2007


Greek fire. The recipe has been lost to history, though.



http://www.greece.org/Romiosini/greek_fire.html

edward said is gay
Jun 21, 2008

by Fistgrrl


this thread is morally disgusting just go to an airshow already and jack off to the different war machines there

Nehru the Damaja
May 20, 2005



http://www.amazon.com/Greek-Poison-...s/dp/158567608X - Cool book on all sorts of unconventional/chemical/biological/incendiary weapons of the classical era. It's organized loving terribly but there's cool stuff in it like a flamethrower artillery piece the Boeoetians used.

Basically just a big donkey cart with a hollowed log plated in metal and a lantern hanging on the end as a pilot light. On the other end the log was crammed full with naptha, super gooey petroleum in a natural state that comes out at ground level, and a giant blacksmiths bellows. The bellows would blast the naphtha through the log, across the pilot light and make a giant blast of flame for torching walls and their defenders.

Grum
May 7, 2007

by mons al-madeen


as cool as archimedes' poo poo was, the romans just invaded by land instead

panascope
Mar 26, 2005
I found this picture on the forums and I think it's cool.


the chronosphere is pretty badass

t3h z0r
May 7, 2008



panascope posted:

the chronosphere is pretty badass
i dunno you could only teleport one unit

oprahjesserafael
Nov 30, 2005

by The Finn


Warwolf
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warwolf

Wikipedia posted:

Even before construction could be completed, the sight of the giant engine so intimidated the Scots that they tried to surrender. Edward, declaring, "You don't deserve any grace, but must surrender to my will," decided to carry on with the siege and witness for himself the power of the masterful weapon. The Warwolf accurately hurled missiles weighing as much as three hundred pounds and levelled a large section of the curtain wall.

RZApublican
Nov 6, 2007

So many horrible memories for Past Karkat...

Hysterical Woman posted:

Greek fire. The recipe has been lost to history, though.



http://www.greece.org/Romiosini/greek_fire.html

if I remember correctly Greek fire was also used during sieges as a defensive weapon, which is even more awesome

Aristotle Animes
Feb 11, 2006

...

Grum posted:

as cool as archimedes' poo poo was, the romans just invaded by land instead

they pwnd that nerd doing math in the sandbox

Ambrose Burnside
Aug 29, 2007

pensive


good OP

I love the Great Turkish Bombard. A handful- no more than 5- were commissioned by Mehmed II in 1450 to be used upon Constantinople.

Each gun fired a 1500-lb projectile a range of several miles- after firing the barrel was cooled with oil and could be fired again 3 or 4 hours later. After 90 days the guns breached the walls and Constantinople, the last stronghold of Old Rome, fell to the Moslem invader.

Mehmed thought they were the coolest loving things he had ever seen.

He ordered 40 more.

They were positioned in the Dardanelles Strait to guard against possible invaders. And there they sat for 300 years, growing into the landscape, their carriages rotted away and their barrels full of dirt.

In 1803, the British showed up for some old-school Imperialism.
The local garrison unearthed the ancient guns, cleaned them up, loaded them with powder and granite shot, lit the fuse, and ran like hell.

The bombards worked flawlessly. The British fleet got its' poo poo torn up by 300-year old cannons- one shot was confirmed to have killed over 60 soldiers on a British ship and put a hole a foot wide through the bottom of the hull.



At the foot of Mehmed the II's tomb is a single granite cannon-ball.

Ambrose Burnside fucked around with this message at Jul 6, 2008 around 17:36

rope kid
Feb 3, 2001

Warte nur! Balde
Ruhest du auch.


simon de montfort loved trebuchets. he called the biggest one malvoisine, bad neighbor.

Frankosity
May 1, 2008

I've got the abattoir blues

It's not really a "superweapon" per se, but I liked that in the Middle Ages they used catapaults to launch Plague-ridden corpses and rotten meat into the cities they were sieging to kill off the population with disease. Now THAT is efficient use of available resources.

z0g
Jul 15, 2003

by Fragmaster


that cannon is loving boss

Grum
May 7, 2007

by mons al-madeen


Aristotle Animes posted:

they pwnd that nerd doing math in the sandbox

Don't disturb my circles

rope kid
Feb 3, 2001

Warte nur! Balde
Ruhest du auch.


Frankosity posted:

It's not really a "superweapon" per se, but I liked that in the Middle Ages they used catapaults to launch Plague-ridden corpses and rotten meat into the cities they were sieging to kill off the population with disease. Now THAT is efficient use of available resources.
the best was when they launched diseased pigs into antioch.

Reaganball Z
Jun 21, 2007

Hybrid children watch the sea
Pray for Father, roaming free


now do china

People Have Died
Aug 30, 2003



Grum posted:

as cool as archimedes' poo poo was, the romans just invaded by land instead

And then Archimedes was stabbed by some random Roman rear end in a top hat who didn't know who he was because Archimedes was supposedly autistic and couldn't stop working

Good job Rome

Ambrose Burnside
Aug 29, 2007

pensive


Aix-la-Chapelle posted:

now do china


lever-action top-loading magazine-fed repeating crossbow and it's almost 2000 years old

e: trained soldiers could pull off 10 bolts in 15 seconds easy from the hip
that rate of fire wasn't seen in the western world until napoleon fielded pneumatic pop-gun snipers (also cool but not an ancient superweapon)

Ambrose Burnside fucked around with this message at Jul 6, 2008 around 17:49

Nehru the Damaja
May 20, 2005



The Phoenicians repelled invading greeks by launching cauldrons of red-hot sand that got in people's eyes and under their armor. poo poo was so torturous dudes were jumping off ships.

edit: also who was the guy that told invading soldiers to gently caress off while he was in the bathtub. I thought it was Archimedes but I guess not. Diogenes maybe?

Nehru the Damaja fucked around with this message at Jul 6, 2008 around 17:51

Aristotle Animes
Feb 11, 2006

...

King Berel posted:

And then Archimedes was stabbed by some random Roman rear end in a top hat who didn't know who he was because Archimedes was supposedly autistic and couldn't stop working

Good job Rome

Aristotle Animes posted:

they pwnd that nerd doing math in the sandbox

and diagnosing mental conditions of ancient dudes is loving dumb

edward said is gay
Jun 21, 2008

by Fistgrrl


you guys know what else is cool? napalm and white phosphorus! look at those hajis burn!

z0g
Jul 15, 2003

by Fragmaster


Aristotle Animes posted:

and diagnosing mental conditions of ancient dudes is loving dumb

yeah okay whatever famed forum poster Autistic Animes

edward said is gay posted:

you guys know what else is cool? napalm and white phosphorus! look at those hajis burn!

you are a tremendous enjoyable human being and you make LF less interesting to read

Esteban
Jun 22, 2008

You don't have to know where you are, to be happy there.

Wikipedia posted:

A large tapered tower, each side about 130 feet (41.1 meters) high, and 65 feet (20.6 m) wide, it rested on eight wheels, each 12 feet (3.7 m) high. The three exposed sides were rendered fireproof with iron plates, and stories divided the interior, connected by two broad flights of stairs. The machine weighed 160 tons, and required 3,400 men working in relays to move it, 200 turning a large capstan driving the wheels via a belt, and the rest pushing from behind. Casters permitted lateral movement, so the entire apparatus could be steered towards the desired attack point, while always keeping the siege engines inside aimed at the walls, and the protective body of the machine directly between the city walls and the men pushing behind it.

Ultimately it wasn't very successful. (from wiki: By cover of night he had the Rhodians knock a hole through the wall and channel large amounts of water, mud and sewage onto the area where the Helepolis was expected to attack the following day. Diognetus was successful; the tower was brought forth to the anticipated attack position and became irretrievably stuck in the mire)

But imagine this rolls up to your city and starts firing flaming arrows over the walls. Would the poo poo hit your pants before it hits the fan?

Esteban fucked around with this message at Jul 6, 2008 around 18:03

Ambrose Burnside
Aug 29, 2007

pensive


http://www.chinahistoryforum.com/in...topic=3777&st=0
this guy made a chinese repeating crossbow, documented it and posted plans L@@K

E^^^^^^^^^^^: God-drat, whose was that? Looks European but it embodies the Musselman's sense of grandeur.

Ambrose Burnside fucked around with this message at Jul 6, 2008 around 18:04

People Have Died
Aug 30, 2003



Aristotle Animes posted:

and diagnosing mental conditions of ancient dudes is loving dumb

I wasn't diagnosing him, I saw a dude on the History channel PORTRAYING him as autistic while the narrator was like "Get a load of that retard. Lights out, waterhead."

Aristotle Animes
Feb 11, 2006

...

Pistachio Hell posted:

yeah okay whatever famed forum poster Autistic Animes

i just owned your thesis lol

People Have Died
Aug 30, 2003



Esteban posted:

Ultimately it wasn't very successful.

But imagine this rolls up to your city and starts firing flaming arrows over the walls. Would the poo poo hit your pants before it hits the fan?

So that's what the Rook chess piece is supposed to be

z0g
Jul 15, 2003

by Fragmaster


Esteban posted:

Ultimately it wasn't very successful. (from wiki: By cover of night he had the Rhodians knock a hole through the wall and channel large amounts of water, mud and sewage onto the area where the Helepolis was expected to attack the following day. Diognetus was successful; the tower was brought forth to the anticipated attack position and became irretrievably stuck in the mire)

But imagine this rolls up to your city and starts firing flaming arrows over the walls. Would the poo poo hit your pants before it hits the fan?

that's loving ridiculous. why not just use horses?

Aristotle Animes posted:

i just owned your thesis lol

What thesis I haven't done poo poo, you're the guy named after an autistic dude have fun trying to let this go and sleep at night.

Sputty
Mar 20, 2005



edward said is gay posted:

you guys know what else is cool? napalm and white phosphorus! look at those hajis burn!

you mean slopes

Xephero
Jul 23, 2007



Esteban posted:



this is the coolest thing yet itt but don't leech tia

Aristotle Animes
Feb 11, 2006

...

Pistachio Hell posted:

What thesis I haven't done poo poo, you're the guy named after an autistic dude have fun trying to let this go and sleep at night.

Archimedes and Aristotle were two completely different people I assure you

Dot Communism
Aug 16, 2005

by Peatpot


Frankosity posted:

It's not really a "superweapon" per se, but I liked that in the Middle Ages they used catapaults to launch Plague-ridden corpses and rotten meat into the cities they were sieging to kill off the population with disease. Now THAT is efficient use of available resources.

The mongols did this to genoese colonies in the crimea and the colonists who escaped back to italy inadvertently ended up spreading the plague!

Nehru the Damaja
May 20, 2005



Esteban posted:

awesome poo poo about the Helepolis siege-tower

I don't know if it's apocryphal or not (a lot of poo poo surrounding it seems to be) but supposedly the people of Rhodes scrapped it and used the metal to build the Colossus

Esteban
Jun 22, 2008

You don't have to know where you are, to be happy there.

Xephero posted:

this is the coolest thing yet itt but don't leech tia

Fixed now

King Berel posted:

So that's what the Rook chess piece is supposed to be
Some do believe that the rook was modeled after siege towers, in European chess.

z0g
Jul 15, 2003

by Fragmaster


Aristotle Animes posted:

Archimedes and Aristotle were two completely different people I assure you

dude you aren't familiar with the Hellenistic Conspiracy?!


get the gently caress out noob

Esteban
Jun 22, 2008

You don't have to know where you are, to be happy there.

Jazz enjoyable human being posted:

I don't know if it's apocryphal or not (a lot of poo poo surrounding it seems to be) but supposedly the people of Rhodes scrapped it and used the metal to build the Colossus

I've heard they sold the remaining ones and used that to fund the Colossus.

Reprisal
Jul 20, 2001


Ambrose Burnside posted:

In 1803, the British showed up for some old-school Imperialism.
The local garrison unearthed the ancient guns, cleaned them up, loaded them with powder and granite shot, lit the fuse, and ran like hell.

The bombards worked flawlessly.

Awesome

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Stegosaurus
Sep 30, 2005

yeah it was like, we came in one day and there was a five-seven just chillin on airbus two. we were like, 'the hell?'

edward said is gay posted:

this thread is morally disgusting just go to an airshow already and jack off to the different war machines there
what the gently caress are you talking about

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