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Mongolian Archery

Ample information about archery can be found in literary and historical documents of the 13th century and even before. It is an ancient sport of the Mongols which can be traced back to as early as 300-200 BC. According to historians, archery contests began in the 11th century. The Mongols use a compound bow, built up of layers of horn, sinew, bark and wood. When unstrung it is not straight, but curved. Archery is more archaic and ritualistic than other sports and posture.
The target consists of a row several meters across, of small woven leather rings, some painted red, which are laid out laterally on the ground. The openings face upwards, providing challenging exercise in trajectory for the archer. In olden times, women did not participate in the contest, but in the last few decades they have started to do so. The distance is about 75m for men and 60m for women. Men shoot about 40 arrows and must Score not less than 15 points and women shoot 20 arrows and must score at least 13 Point using the same bow as the men.
When the arrow hits the target, a group of people standing near the target, acting as judges, raise the cry “Uukhai!” and make signs with their hands to indicate the result. The one who score the most points is the winner and the title of Mergen (Super-marksman) is bestowed on him or her.

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1 Response for “Mongolian Archery”

  1. peter rhodes says:

    hello. is there any western style shooting (olypmic style shooting) archery clubs in Ulaanbataar as I will be coming over and would like to join. Regards Pete

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