Assyrians - Battering Ram

Week 6: We studied the Assyrians and built a battering ram, chariot and a siege tower.

The Assyrians were masters of war. Sargon II paid his army and supplied them with armor, food and horses. Horses were so valuable that killing them was highly discouraged. Instead they were captured. Sennacherib lead the Assyrians to destroy the city of Babylon and enslave the Jews using his highly trained horsemen, siege towers, chariots and battering rams.

Chariots, battering rams and siege towers all make use of simple machines.

There are three different types of simple machines.
  • Lever
  • Inclined Plane, Screw, Wedge
  • Wheel and Axle, Pulley

Chariots contain wheels and axles. During the time of the Assyrians the wheels of the chariot were moved from the rear of the vehicle to the center. This great advancement allowed the Assyrians to place an additional man in their chariots which gave them a significant battle advantage.

Battering rams also contain wheels and the ram mechanism is a lever. A lever helps people do work through the use of a pivot point. In this case the load is hung from two ropes to enable the operator to move it more easily.

Siege towers sometimes contained battering rams and wheels. This one does not. They were used to breech city walls.

There are many different versions of siege towers, battering rams and chariots which were used in the numerous battles between the Assyrians, Hittites and Babylonians. It was fun to combine history and science as we explored these weapons of ancient warfare.

This post is linked to: 
It's Playtime
Kitchen Fun
Sun Scholars

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