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A bow () is a flexible arc with the two ends linked by some sort of string. By pulling on the string, the archer or bowman bends the bow and creates tension. An aerodynamic projectile, known as an arrow (), is usually fitted into the string and when the string is released by the archer, the energy (tension) stored in the bent bow is transferred to the arrow and shot forward at a considerable distance. The bow and arrow are usually used as weapons and dominated warfare for thousands of years. Bows are common to most cultures, and during the Sengoku jidai was one of the primary weapons used by samurai. Mikos were known to use a special type of ceremonial bow, known as a Saigū-Yumi. Usually, this kind of bow would fire unique sacred arrows which were capable of slaying yōkai.

Kagome Higurashi, a notable miko, used a normal bow for most of her campaign against the demon Naraku, although she was a priestess. She did use sacred arrows, however. Initially she was not a very good shot and though she gradually improved, she was prone to miss quite frequently. She was also of the habit of misplacing, losing, or breaking her bow, much to the annoyance of her friends. When this happened at a critical moment, the fox demon Shippō would transform himself into a bow for Kagome to use temporarily.

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