Bian Jian (邊箭)

Ming Chinese Majra Solenarion
Drawing of a Bian Jian, from 'Bing Lu (《兵錄》)'.
Bian Jian (邊箭, lit. 'Border arrow' or 'Side arrow') is a short arrow designed to be shot from an arrow-guide. The arrow-and-guide combination allows the archer to shoot small but high velocity arrows, which are hard to spot and harder still to dodge. Furthermore, Bian Jian has longer range than normal arrows and cannot be reused by the enemy without similar devices.

Chinese archers had been using arrow-guide, then known as Tong Jian (筒箭, lit. 'Tube arrow'), as early as Tang Dynasty.


Tong-ah 통아
A Pyeonjeon (left) and Tong-ah (middle) alongside a normal arrow (right), from 'Yungwon pilbi (《융원필비》 or 《戎垣必備》)'.
Korean equivalent of Bian Jian is known as Tong-ah (통아 or 筒兒) for the tube and Pyeonjeon (편전 or 片箭) for the short arrow. Other similar devices include Byzantine Solenarion (σωληνάριον) and Turkish Majra or Navek.

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