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I've tried to look for a collective noun for arrows that are in motion and most internet results suggest a quiver of arrows and a sheaf of arrows. However, a quiver is a container that holds arrows and a sheaf is a bundle of arrows tied together. In both these cases, the arrows are stationary.

The closest collective nouns I can think of are rain of arrows or bunch of arrows. These don't sound specific to arrows though.

Does anyone know the specific collective noun for arrows in motion?

Thanks in advance.

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4 Answers 4

5

A volley of arrows.

As defined in Collins:

1. 
a.  the simultaneous discharge of a number of firearms or other weapons
b.  the bullets, arrows, etc. discharged in this way

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You may also use a flight of arrows. There are many examples to be found in google ngram. Here is only one of them:

History of |Conquest of New Spain

On hearing the Cacique's shouts, the warriors attacked us in great haste and fury, and began to shoot with such skill that the first flight of arrows wounded fifteen soldiers.

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  • Apologies for posting the same answer. It wasn't there when I started composing mine. Took a while to check references and photograph my copy of the OED as the print is too small for me to read.
    – David
    Feb 21 at 11:22
  • @David Thanks, but priority doesn't matter does it? It is interesting that the discussion seems to be tending towards flight rather than volley, which may have been too precipitately accepted.
    – Anton
    Feb 21 at 16:44
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A flight of arrows.

I cannot find a dictionary example of this in an online search, perhaps because there is a book of the same name. I therefore quote from a print copy of the OED:

8
c. A volley of missiles, esp. arrows.

Although examples in modern English are quoted, the first, in Scots, seems rather fine to me because of the alliteration:

Fra bowmen bald and wicht, Of fedderit flanis flew ane felloun flicht Amang the Danis.
1538 Stewart Cron. Scot. II 605

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Flight:

OED

8

c. A volley of missiles, esp. arrows. 1535 W. Stewart tr. H. Boethius Bk. Cron. Scotl. (1858) II. 605 Fra bowmen bald and wicht, Of fedderit flanis flew ane felloun flicht Amang the Danis.

1869 C. Boutell tr. J. P. Lacombe Arms & Armour viii. 131 The English archers..poured upon them their deadly arrows in flights thick as hail.

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