The Role Of The Trabuco In The History Of War

The Trabuco is an ancient missile launcher that was developed as a medieval war machine. The war machine was designed around the concept of the sling, which was prevalent back then. It was used to fling large stones and other missiles over high walls to bring them down or cause the maximum damage possible. It was the primary weapon of choice during siege situations and could be relied upon to crash down masonry enemy walls.

The initial design allowed the addition of wheels to enable warriors to move it as close to enemy positions as possible. According to the Chinese have claimed credit for the original edition of the middle age invention. The war machine is easy to manufacture and service. This accelerated its prominence and use. It also became wildly popular due to the massive weight of the projectiles that it could launch.


It’s the only machine, which could send heavier projectiles for longer distances than anything else available at the time. The general operational concept is simple. It takes gravitational energy and transforms it into a dynamic form, which enables it to propel a load as heavy as lead. The counterbalance mechanism also influences the amount of weight that can be launched from the machine.

Although the machines were initially made with an allowance for wheels, they were not mechanized in any way and required to be pushed by dozens of warriors to their usage point. Trabuco also required men to move the missiles, load them and launch. A single machine demanded more than two hundred men to operate.

Traders helped introduce trabuco to new areas where diverse groups of people created their specific versions using the same concept. Modified editions of the war machine are believed to have been used in the Middle East as well as Europe. The regional improvements enhanced its accuracy and increased the missile weight as well as the distance it could launch.

In addition, the range of missiles evolved from stones to include sand barrels, dead animals and later sick people and dead bodies of infected people. The war machine was the weapon of choice for the smart and highly tactical Mongol army. The Trabuco was only felled by the invention of gunpowder and canons.

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