Throwing stick

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Aboriginal craft: throwing sticks Aboriginal craft.jpg
Aboriginal craft: throwing sticks
Hunting birds with throwing sticks in ancient Egypt Maler der Grabkammer des Nacht 006.jpg
Hunting birds with throwing sticks in ancient Egypt

The throwing stick or throwing club is a wooden rod with either a pointed tip or a spearhead attached to one end, intended for use as a weapon. A throwing stick can be either straight or roughly boomerang-shaped, and is much shorter than the javelin. It became obsolete as slings and bows became more prevalent, except on the Australian continent, where the native people continued refining the basic design. Throwing sticks shaped like returning boomerangs are designed to fly straight to a target at long ranges, their surfaces acting as airfoils. When tuned correctly they do not exhibit curved flight, but rather they fly on an extended straight flight path. Straight flight ranges greater than 100 meters have been reported by historical sources as well as in recent research.

Boomerang thrown weapon

A boomerang is a thrown tool, typically constructed as a flat airfoil, that is designed to spin about an axis perpendicular to the direction of its flight. A returning boomerang is designed to return to the thrower. It is well known as a weapon used by Indigenous Australians for hunting.

Javelin light spear, designed to be thrown

A javelin is a light spear designed primarily to be thrown, historically as a ranged weapon, but today predominantly for sport. The javelin is almost always thrown by hand, unlike the bow and arrow and slingshot, which shoot projectiles from a mechanism. However, devices do exist to assist the javelin thrower in achieving greater distance, generally called spear-throwers.

Sling (weapon) ranged weapon

A sling is a projectile weapon typically used to throw a blunt projectile such as a stone, clay, or lead "sling-bullet". It is also known as the shepherd's sling. Someone who specialises in using slings is called a slinger.



Throwing baton of a Guanche mencey (king) MNH - Mencey-Stab.jpg
Throwing baton of a Guanche mencey (king)

The ancient Egyptians used throwing sticks to hunt small game and waterfowl, as seen in several wall paintings. The 18th-dynasty pharaoh Tutankhamun was a known lover of duck hunting and used the throwing stick in his hunts, and a number of throwing sticks were found in the tombs of pharaohs. Menceys, the kings of the ancient Guanches of the Canary Islands, also used throwing batons. Gimel, the third letter of many Semitic alphabets, may have been named after a weapon that was either a staff sling or a throwing stick, ultimately deriving from a Proto-Sinaitic glyph based on an Egyptian hieroglyph.

Ancient Egypt ancient civilization of Northeastern Africa

Ancient Egypt was a civilization of ancient North Africa, concentrated along the lower reaches of the Nile River in the place that is now the country Egypt. Ancient Egyptian civilization followed prehistoric Egypt and coalesced around 3100 BC with the political unification of Upper and Lower Egypt under Menes. The history of ancient Egypt occurred as a series of stable kingdoms, separated by periods of relative instability known as Intermediate Periods: the Old Kingdom of the Early Bronze Age, the Middle Kingdom of the Middle Bronze Age and the New Kingdom of the Late Bronze Age.

The Eighteenth Dynasty of Egypt is classified as the first dynasty of the New Kingdom of Egypt, the era in which ancient Egypt achieved the peak of its power. The Eighteenth Dynasty spanned the period from 1549/1550 to 1292 BC. This dynasty is also known as the Thutmosid Dynasty for the four pharaohs named Thutmose.

Pharaoh Title of Ancient Egyptian rulers

Pharaoh is the common title of the monarchs of ancient Egypt from the First Dynasty until the annexation of Egypt by the Roman Empire in 30 BCE, although the actual term "Pharaoh" was not used contemporaneously for a ruler until Merneptah, c. 1200 BCE. In the early dynasty, ancient Egyptian kings used to have up to three titles, the Horus, the Sedge and Bee (nswt-bjtj) name, and the Two Ladies (nbtj) name. The Golden Horus and nomen and prenomen titles were later added.

The Aborigines of Australia are well-known for their use of the boomerang. Although returning boomerangs are found in many Aboriginal cultures and will return to the user if thrown properly, the choice weapon of the Aborigines and most cultures was the heavy throwing stick, known internationally as the kylie.[ citation needed ] It was primarily used to kill kangaroos, wallabies, and emus from afar, though it could also be swung like a club.

Aboriginal Australians Term used to refer to some groups of Indigenous Australians

Aboriginal Australians are the various indigenous peoples of the Australian mainland, Tasmania, and often the Tiwi Islands. This group contains many distinct peoples that have developed across Australia for over 50,000 years. These peoples have a broadly shared, though complex, genetic history, but it is only in the last two hundred years that they have been defined and started to self identify as a single group. The definition of the term "Aboriginal" has changed over time and place, with the importance of family lineage, self identification and community acceptance all being of varying importance. In the past, Aboriginal Australians lived over large sections of the continental shelf and were isolated on many of the smaller offshore islands when the land was inundated at the start of the inter-glacial. However, they are considered distinct from the Torres Strait Islander people, despite extensive cultural exchange.

Australia Country in Oceania

Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands. It is the largest country in Oceania and the world's sixth-largest country by total area. The neighbouring countries are Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, and East Timor to the north; the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu to the north-east; and New Zealand to the south-east. The population of 26 million is highly urbanised and heavily concentrated on the eastern seaboard. Australia's capital is Canberra, and its largest city is Sydney. The country's other major metropolitan areas are Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, and Adelaide.

Some Native American tribes such as the Hopi, as well as all southern California tribes, [1] utilized the throwing stick to hunt rabbits and occasionally deer.

Hopi ethnic group

The Hopi are a Native American tribe, who primarily live on the Hopi Reservation in northeastern Arizona. As of the 2010 census, there were 19,338 Hopi in the United States. The Hopi language is one of 30 in the Uto-Aztecan language family. The majority of Hopi people are enrolled in the Hopi Tribe of Arizona but some are enrolled in the Colorado River Indian Tribes. The Hopi Reservation covers a land area of 2,531.773 sq mi (6,557.26 km2).

Rabbit Mammals of the family Leporidae

Rabbits are small mammals in the family Leporidae of the order Lagomorpha. Oryctolagus cuniculus includes the European rabbit species and its descendants, the world's 305 breeds of domestic rabbit. Sylvilagus includes 13 wild rabbit species, among them the 7 types of cottontail. The European rabbit, which has been introduced on every continent except Antarctica, is familiar throughout the world as a wild prey animal and as a domesticated form of livestock and pet. With its widespread effect on ecologies and cultures, the rabbit is, in many areas of the world, a part of daily life—as food, clothing, a companion, and as a source of artistic inspiration.

Deer A family of mammals belonging to even-toed ungulates

Deer are the hoofed ruminant mammals forming the family Cervidae. The two main groups of deer are the Cervinae, including the muntjac, the elk (wapiti), the fallow deer, and the chital; and the Capreolinae, including the reindeer (caribou), the roe deer, and the moose. Female reindeer, and male deer of all species except the Chinese water deer, grow and shed new antlers each year. In this they differ from permanently horned antelope, which are part of a different family (Bovidae) within the same order of even-toed ungulates (Artiodactyla).

The trowing stick was also one of the first weapons used by European stone age people to hunt. Stone carvings in Brittany (France) have been found depicting trowing sticks.

Though originally designed for hunting and survival, the throwing stick can be used as a weapon in human conflicts, though the heavy non-returning boomerang was the only variant ever to become truly effective against a human opponent.[ citation needed ]

Survival tool

As a survival tool, the throwing stick is one of the most effective and easiest tools to obtain. It can be used as a digging tool for making fire-pits and underground shelters in addition to its function as a weapon. A curved branch will suffice as a basic throwing stick. Ancient throwing sticks were made of hardwood with a weighted or curved end to one side to impart momentum so the stick stays straight and does not wobble in mid-flight.


Some variations of the throwing stick are two to three foot long pieces of thick hardwood, usually about the circumference of the user's wrist. When thrown, they spin, creating the image of a blurry disc.

Pommel Point Throwing Sticks are noted for their slightly blunt points that can crush skulls if thrown at sufficient speed. Thus, it is also dubbed the skull crusher throwing stick.

Return boomerangs have a flat convex surface that must be thrown upright with a sharp flick of the wrist, but throwing sticks are thrown horizontally.

See also

Spear-thrower tool to give more leverage when throwing a dart-like projectile

A spear-thrower, spear-throwing lever or atlatl is a tool that uses leverage to achieve greater velocity in dart-throwing, and includes a bearing surface which allows the user to store energy during the throw.

Related Research Articles

<i>Shuriken</i> class of Japanese handheld throwing weapons

A shuriken is a Japanese concealed weapon that was used as a hidden dagger or metsubushi to distract or misdirect.

Ballistics Science of the motion of projectiles

Ballistics is the field of mechanics that concerns with the launching, flight behavior and impact effects of projectiles, especially ranged weapon munitions such as bullets, unguided bombs, rockets or the like; the science or art of designing and accelerating projectiles so as to achieve a desired performance.

A club is among the simplest of all weapons: a short staff or stick, usually made of wood, wielded as a weapon since prehistoric times. There are several examples of blunt-force trauma caused by clubs in the past, including at the site of Nataruk in Turkana, Kenya, described as the scene of a prehistoric conflict between bands of hunter-gatherers 10,000 years ago. In popular culture, clubs are associated with primitive cultures, especially cavemen.

Ranged weapon weapon that can harm targets at distances greater than hand-to-hand distance

A ranged weapon is any weapon that can engage targets beyond hand-to-hand distance, i.e. at distances greater than the physical reach of the weapon itself. It is sometimes also called projectile weapon or missile weapon because it typically works by launching projectiles, though technically a directed-energy weapon is also a ranged weapon. In contrast, a weapon intended to be used in hand-to-hand combat is called a melee weapon.

Dart (missile) missile weapon

Darts are missile weapons, designed to fly such that a sharp, often weighted point will strike first. They can be distinguished from javelins by fletching and a shaft that is shorter and/or more flexible, and from arrows by the fact that they are not of the right length to use with a normal bow.

Australian Aboriginal artifacts

Australian Aboriginal artifacts consist the boomerangs, spears, shields, dillybags and other things Aboriginals had to carry around. Broadly aboriginal artifacts can be categorised as weapons, every day items and ritual or secret sacred objects. Many artifacts were devised to address the harsh living conditions in the Australian environment.

The aklys was a Roman javelin measuring approximately 2 m in length, thrown with the aid of a leather strap or amentum, similar to a Swiss arrow. Every soldier was issued at least two. The term also applies to a small mace or club equipped with spikes, attached to one arm of the wielder by a strap of adjustable length to enable the weapon to be retrieved after it had been hurled at an enemy. Its use probably goes back to the Osci tribe of southern Italy.


A valari is a weapon made up of iron, and this specific variant is used primarily by the Tamil people of the Indian subcontinent. The valari is used for protecting cattle from predators, war and hunting. It was the favourite weapon of choice in deer hunting. It is the predecessor of the wooden boomerang,which was discovered much before than the discovery of the boomerangs, which was used widely in India since the Upper Paleolithic, most notably in the Deccan plains by kingdoms for war and most probably by the kings of present day Tirunelveli in Tamil Nadu.

Woomera (spear-thrower) Australian Aboriginal spear-throwing device

A woomera is a wooden Australian Aboriginal spear-throwing device. Similar to an atlatl, it serves as an extension of the human arm, enabling a spear to travel at a greater speed and force than possible with only the arm.

Coolamon (vessel) carrying vessel from Indigenous Australia

A coolamon is an Australian Aboriginal carrying vessel.

Military of ancient Egypt

Ancient Egypt was an ancient civilization of eastern North Africa, concentrated along the northern reaches of the Nile River in Egypt. The civilization coalesced around 3150 BC with the political unification of Upper and Lower Egypt under the first pharaoh, and it developed over the next three millennia. Its history occurred in a series of stable kingdoms, separated by periods of relative instability known as intermediate periods. Ancient Egypt reached its pinnacle during the New Kingdom, after which it entered a period of slow decline. Egypt was conquered by a succession of foreign powers in the late period, and the rule of the pharaohs officially ended in 31 BC when the early Roman Empire conquered Egypt and made it a province. Although the Egyptian military forces in the Old and Middle kingdoms were well maintained, the new form that emerged in the New Kingdom showed the state becoming more organized to serve its needs.

Hunting weapon weapon designed or used primarily for hunting game animals

Hunting weapons are weapons designed or used primarily for hunting game animals for food or sport, as distinct from defensive weapons or weapons used primarily in warfare.

The Throw stick hieroglyph of Ancient Egypt is an old hieroglyph that dates from the Predynastic Period; it is from the assemblage of hieroglyphs used on the ornamental, or ceremonial cosmetic palettes. It is used on the palettes both as a throwing-stick weapon in the animal hunt being portrayed-(the Hunters Palette), as well as on certain palettes, as a determinative referring to a "foreigner", or "foreign territory".

Weapons of silat Wikimedia list article

Listed here are the weapons of silat. The most common are the machete, staff, kris, sickle, spear, and kerambit. Because Southeast Asian society was traditionally based around agriculture, many of these weapons were originally farming tools.

The University of Queensland estimates that Australia has around 300,000 active hunters investing $556,650,000 annually into the Australian economy.

Throwing launching of a ballistic projectile by hand

Throwing is the launching of a ballistic projectile by hand. This action is only possible for animals with the ability to grasp objects with their hands.


  1. "GERARDO ALDAMA JR KUMEYAAY California Indian Rabbit Sticks".