Ancient Warfare Answers (252): Why javelins?

Robert asks, 'Why javelins? It seems that a bow would be a much better weapon for a skirmish in the ancient world, but it seems that javelin-armed light troops may have been the most common type in Europe.

Additionally, if using javelins, why not an atlatl to throw them with? This would make a difference in hitting a target, but one has to believe that range would be an important factor while skirmishing.'

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