Native American Weapons
by Colin F. Taylor
Featuring 155 color photographs and illustrations, Native American Weapons surveys weapons made and used by American Indians north of present-day Mexico from prehistoric times to the late nineteenth century, when European weapons were in common use. 

Colin F. Taylor skillfully describes the weapons and their roles in tribal culture, economy, and political systems. He categorizes the weapons according to their function--from striking, cutting, and piercing weapons to those with defensive and even symbolic properties, and he documents the ingenuity of the people who crafted them. 

Taylor explains the history and use of weapons such as the atlatl, a lethal throwing stick whose basic design was enhanced by carving, painting, or other ornamentation. The atlatl surprised De Soto's expedition and contributed to the Spaniards' defeat. Another highlight is Taylor's description of the evolution of body armor, first fashioned to defend against arrows, then against bullets from early firearms. 

Over thousands of years the weapons were developed and creatively matched to their environment--highly functional and often decorative, carried proudly in tribal gatherings and in war.


Native American Weapons
by Colin F. Taylor 
University of Oklahoma Press, 2005
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