The History and Times of the Trabuco

Trabuco is the Portuguese word for trebuchet which is an ancient war machine. The trabuco was a weapon that was used during the middle ages in Europe and Asia. It was also used in Africa and the Americas. When the Spanish arrived in South America during the 1500s the trabuco was no longer a relevant weapon of war. European have traded the trabuco for the use of the cannon. However, it was still utilized by some armies during that era. Armies still relied on the trebuchet and kept them in their weapon caches. However, they were not the primary weapon of choice during that era.

The original trabuco (or trebuchet) was invented by the Chinese according to They created this artillery weapon sometime around 400 B.C. The trabuco was not a popular weapon of war during the ancient era. Sometime around 500 A.D. The trebuchet arrived in Europe. The French people used them extensively in warfare. They were usually successful on the battlefield with the help of this weapon. Soon, other kingdoms and empires began to adopt its use.


The Trabuco used large crews of soldiers to operate the machine. At least 40 men would be needed to pull the rope of the large sling and to release it. The units were extremely tall and difficult to manage. No single could effectively operate a trebuchet. Keep in mind that the unit has a large sling arm that is able to hurl heavy objects at least 800 yards at enemy lines. Trabucos were commonly situated behind armies and they would reign down large rocks, pitch and even dead bodies at enemy forces based on

When the Portuguese and Spanish went into South America they were already using gunpowder and cannons. So, the trabucos were used in limited conflicts. The indigenous tribes never adopted the trabuco for their armies. They favored guns and cannon instead. Trabucos are no longer a weapon of importance in modern warfare. However, they are used for pumpkin chucking competitions which is big deal in America and in other parts of the world.

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