What a great list: Top 10 Badass Ancient Weapons. (HT: Matt Bertrand) Culverins, caltrops, burning oil, arbalests, hunga mungas, morning stars, human corpses, catapults, flame-throwers, and — most badass of them all — scythed chariots. There are nice illustrations to go with these.
I think it’s interesting that #s 2, 3, 4, and 5 were all used on the Pelennor Fields in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings. By the armies of Mordor, of course. Aside from a few catapults, the Gondorians had to contend mostly with swords, bows & arrows, and a lone wizard’s ninja-staff. That would have been nice to work into my politically-correct satire of the film.