Category Archives: Ancient Weapon

The Trabuco Helped To Conquer The New World

Published / by TheHI

Shortly after Christopher Columbus landed in the America’s the Spanish Conquistador, Hernan Cortes went on to conquer the indigenous people that lived in Central America. They were known as the Aztecs and they lived in modern day Central America. Cortes had the most sophisticated types of weapons of his day, to accomplish this mission.

Gunpowder was in widespread use by the 15th century according to The Spanish military used these weapons on the battlefield. The conquistadors of that era also used gunpowder-based weapons to subject the native populations they encountered. When Cortes attacked the Aztecs, he had limited ammunition for his guns and cannons. So, he had to erect a trabuco to help him in the assault against the Aztec empire.


The conquistadors used this weapon as a back up armament when sacking cities or laying siege to an empire. Gunpowder was available, but there was not a consistent supply of this substance. The Spanish conquerors had to make due with what they had. Often times, they relied a lot more on traditional weapons such as swords, arrows and trabucos than they did harquebus (long rifles) and cannons.

Portuguese artillerists used the trabuco to help conquer Brazil during the 1500s according to Once again, while gunpowder was quickly being assimilated into the armies of many empires and nations; there was not always a steady supply of this munition. So, many of the armies had to rely on the more traditional weapons when gunpowder ran low. Keep in mind that the early artillery and gun units were attachments within the regular army. They did not start to become standard members until the latter part of the 16th century.

Many kingdoms during the late middle ages did rely on the trabuco. They needed it to conquer the indigenous peoples that existed in the lands they wanted to take. The trabuco might not have been the primary artillery weapon used in the process; but it certainly did help many medieval armies to overcome the people that resisted their rule.

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