Modern Marvels

Siege Machines

Season 9, Ep 9, Aired 2/26/02
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  • Episode Description
  • A look at siege machines that convert energy into mechanical force to go over, under, or through fortified or fixed defenses too strong for conventional force. These engines range from man's first long-range missile weapon, the slingshot, to the laser cannons and satellite-destroying robots of the 21st century. All of these machines are designed to breach barriers--castle walls, entrenched troops, even outer space. When the going gets tough, the tough get siege machinesmoreless

  • Fan Reviews (1)
  • Siege machines, this was a great episode of modern marvels. Need to break into a fort, this is the one for you. From catapults to trebachets, from battering rams to guided smart weapons, this episode that it all.

    By mgreen789, Jan 04, 2006

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (1)

    • Narrator: From time immemorial humans have been developing weapons that can blast through, break down and breach the world’s strongest fortifications. From the ancient battering ram to medieval catapults and the crossbows, from cannons and tanks to computer guided cruise missiles. Now: Siege Machines, on Modern Marvels

    Notes (1)

    • Hew Kennedy Military Historian Paul Denney Historian, Ron Toms Founder & CEO, Dr. John France Medieval Historian, University of Wales-Swansea Dr. Kelly DeVries Prof. of History, Loyola College, Maryland Julie Douglass Archeologist, Norman Friedman Military Historian Ed Heasley Curator, US Army Ordnance Museum Dr. Bart Kosko Department of Electrical Engineering, USC Dawn Thompson Pumpkin Chunker Eric Ludlam Team Tormentum William "Big Bill" Thompson Pumpkin Chunker Charles Burton Pumpkin Chunkin' Historian Roger Nichols Team Tormentum Andrew Reed Pumpkin Chunker Sean Reid Pumpkin Chunker John Huber Pumpkin Chunker Harry "Capt. Speed" Lackhove Retired Chunker Nathan Parker Pumpkin Chunker Jake Burton Future Engineer Executive Producer: Don Cambou Writer: Mary Wallace Producer: Mary Wallace Associate Producer: Kristina Djokic Associate Producer: Holly A. Murdoch Line Producer: Paul Dzilvelis Consulting Producer: Henry Schipper Narrator: Max Raphael Editor: Andre Vaillancourt Producer: Bruce Nash Creator: Bruce Nash Music: Alan Ett Production Manager: Kathlene Exner Post Producer: Scott Berkson Clearance Supervisor: Katie Del Core Director of Research: Hildie Katibah Archivist: Nilda Pergola-Jensen Researcher: Mark Savage Researcher: Diane Wai Clearance Assistant: Gabe Martinez Historical Consultant: Ron Toms Footage Consultant: Ted Troll Camera: Michael Ford Camera: John Hunter Camera: Peter Krajewski Camera: Mark Morris Camera: Holly A. Murdoch Field Audio: Amy Flannery Field Audio: Phil Middleham Post Production Supervisor: Jason Steinberg Post Production Coordinator: Gary Reid Voice over Coordinator: Dawn Irwin Post Production Assistant: Montgomery Jesselton Kingsley Online Editor: David Rex Sound Mixer: Paul Ray Animation: Glenn Takakjian Graphics: Barry Hill Production Auditor: Dani Eslin Assistant Production Accountant: Linda Scribner Production Coordinator: Michael Z Davis Production Assistant: Maryalice R. Aragon Production Assistant: Rasi Delgado Special Thanks: Artefacts Boomers Books CADW: Welsh Historic Monuments Eisner Communications Sam Gaffney Frank Payton Jim Payton Waddy Thompson Ron Toms Executive Producer: Beth Dietrich-Segarra

    Trivia (4)

    • During the siege of Constantinople in 1453, a giant cannon called Basilica fired 1,600 pound balls that traveled more than a mile.

    • The last recorded use of a trebuchet was be Hernando Cortes in 1521, during the siege of Tenochtitlan, now Mexico City.

    • Parts of the dismantled Helepolis were used to build the Colossus of Rhodes.

    • A battering ram used during the siege of Rhodes in 309 BC was 180 feet long. One thousand men were required to wield it.

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