Asian Traditional Archery Research Network (ATARN)

A1, Cloudridge,
30, Plunkett’s Road,
The Peak, Hong Kong.

Tel: (852) 2895-4488
Fax: (852) 2808-2887
April 29, 2001

Letter from Peking (September 1998) Letter of November 1998 Letter of December 1998
Letter #2 of December 1998
Letter of Jan 1999
Letter of February 1999 Letter of March 1999 Letter of April 1999 Letter of May 1999
Letter of June 1999 Letter of August 1999 Letter of October 1999 Letter of November 1999
Letter of December 1999

Letter of January 2000

Letter of February 2000 Letter of March 2000
Letter of April 2000 Letter of May 2000    

Dear All,

This letter is a mixture of good and bad news. The bad news is that I have a whole lot more work to do (not connected with Asian archery – in which case it would have been good news).

In a previous letter I announced that ATARN would present a Symposium on ‘The Archery Culture of China’ in October 2000. After careful consideration with our co-organizers, we have decided that this important event should be postponed until April/May 2001. This will give me more time for the organization and fund-raising.

On the positive side, our co-organizer, the Yan Huang Chinese Culture Research Society, has obtained a preliminary agreement from some very distinguished speakers to address the Symposium. These speakers have expressed a genuine interest in our work. For example, China’s most eminent expert on ancient weapons, Professor Yang Hong, has agreed to speak. Other experts from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and the Institute of Military Science of the People’s Liberation Army are also prepared to take part.

I also hope to get the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences to arrange to display some important archaeological discoveries relating to Chinese and national minority archery.

One thing that this change of date allows me to do is to attend the International Horse Archery Festival to be held from September 7 – 10, 2000 at the Webster County Fairgrounds, Fort Dodge, Iowa 50501. This is an event that I cannot possibly miss. The revival of horseback archery as a sporting event, lead by Yumi (Kaye and Jaap Koppedreyer) and Meg Beshey, fits perfectly with the aims of ATARN, and we have been privileged to act as a go-between in arranging for archers from Mongolia to attend the event. Please obtain more information from Meg and Dave Beshey at or by fax to (oops... well no fax, but I guess you’ll all be using email...)

Please try to attend the event so that I can meet more ATARN faces and we can all support this wonderful initiative!

Just today I was playing host to a group of patent attorneys from Pyongyang, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (‘North Korea’). They confirmed to me that archery is still common and that traditional archery is still practiced there for national sporting events. This is important information. I don’t know whether there is already contact or not between the North and South on traditional archery (Tom Duvernay, any comment for the Discussion Forum?) but once the forthcoming summit meeting is past, perhaps ATARN should try to play a part in strengthening friendly, non political contacts.)

I need more articles from you, folks. I can go on writing about Chinese archery, but the website is getting very top-heavy in that area. Meanwhile, I have nothing about Tibet or Bhutan. I hope to go and do a survey of Manchurian traditional archery of the Sibe tribe (from Chapchal in Xinjiang); but for the moment I have had to put off my travel arrangements.

I have recently changed my INTERNET service provider. Please check your records and make sure you have my up-to-date email address: .

Yours faithfully,


(Stephen Selby)