In episode S07E04 of Game of Thrones Bronn shoots a Dothraki with the scorpion, before opening the carriage carrying the scorpion itself. We see in the following scene that Bronn needs to open the folded arms of the scorpion to load it and use it.

Is that first shot explainable? Or is it a plot hole?

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    Answer: it made for a cool shot Aug 7 '17 at 22:06
  • @problemofficer in the title or the body? if the body please note that it has been edited. if the title, I apologise, I thought that I avoided revealing anything crucial.
    – Federico
    Aug 8 '17 at 15:15
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    How did Bronn shoot? Very well, thanks for asking. Aug 8 '17 at 21:01

The scorpion has 4 limbs, with the upper pair being shorter than the low one.

Unfolded Unfolded

As a result, only the long ones need to be folded for transport.


Not much use for killing a dragon, but probably enough for shooting a man at point blank.

  • 2
    You may want to include in your answer the historical precedence for ballista designs with more than one bow. Chinese ballistas, for example, would add more bows to increase the range. Aug 7 '17 at 22:07
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    Also, may want to add this close-up picture, as it's a much more clear image of the two pairs of limbs crossing at the latch. Aug 7 '17 at 22:12
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    Another photo which makes it much clearer Aug 8 '17 at 12:50
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    @GhotiandChips Not gonna lie; I know next to nothing about such devices, and would probably be quite inept at writing a decent explanation of their historical appearances. Feel free to edit my post if you feel like it, but I think it would actually be worth its own question/answer.
    – Reyssor
    Aug 8 '17 at 20:57

To add to Reyssor's answer:

enter image description here enter image description here A ballista isn't exactly a big crossbow. Rather than the bolt being nocked onto the string, it is placed into a shuttle which runs along a track. The track prevents the shuttle from moving vertically, so even the vertically offset upper lath would be sufficient to fire the bolt horizontally. (You wouldn't want to do it too often, as it would wear out the shuttle and the track.)


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