The fire lance was a early gunpowder weapon that appeared in 10th-century China during the Jin-Song Wars. It began as a small pyrotechnic device attached to a spear-like weapon, used to gain a critical shock advantage right at the start of a melee; as gunpowder improved, the explosive discharge was increased, debris or pellets added, giving it some of the effects of a combination modern flamethrower and shotgun, but with a short range, only one shot. In larger and more powerful fire lances, the lance-point was discarded, as these versions were too unwieldy to be used in melee; these are considered to be a proto-gun, the predecessor of the hand cannon, the ancestor of all firearms. Some fire lances were too large for a single man to wield; these were placed upon the ground in a supporting framework, can be considered proto-cannons. The first fire lances consisted of a tube bamboo, containing gunpowder and a slow match, strapped to a spear or other polearm weapon. Once ignited, the gunpowder tube would ideally eject a stream of flames in the direction of the spearhead.
Co-viative projectiles such as iron pellets or pottery shards were added to the gunpowder. Upon firing, the gunpowder charge ejected the projectiles along with the flame. Metal fire lance barrels appeared around the mid-13th century and these began to be used independently of the lance itself; the independent metal barrel became the forerunner of the hand cannon. The first evidence of fire lances appeared in China in the year 950 and fire lances were mentioned in the military text Wujing Zongyao of 1044; however usage of fire lances in warfare was not mentioned until 1132 when Song garrisons used them during the Siege of De'an, in modern-day Anlu, when fire lance troops led the vanguard in a sortie against the Jin dynasty. In 1163 fire lances were attached to war carts known as "at-your-desire-carts" used to defend mobile firebomb trebuchets. In the late 1100s pieces of shrapnel such as porcelain shards and small iron pellets were added to the gunpowder tube. At some point fire lances discarded the spearhead altogether and relied on their firepower.
By 1232 the Jin were using fire lances, but with improved reusable barrels consisting of durable paper material. According to the History of Jin, these fire lances had a range of three meters: To make the lance, use chi-huang paper, sixteen layers of it for the tube, make it a bit longer than two feet. Stuff it with willow charcoal, iron fragments, magnet ends, white arsenic, other ingredients, put a fuse to the end; each troop has hanging on him a little iron pot to keep fire, when it's time to do battle, the flames shoot out the front of the lance more than ten feet, when the gunpowder is depleted, the tube isn't destroyed. The Mongol soldiers which they were used against were disdainful of other Jin weapons, but feared the fire lance. Jin soldiers used them in open combat and in one instance, a contingent of 450 fire lancers routed an entire Mongol encampment. In 1259 a pellet wad that occluded the barrel was recorded to have been used as a fire lance projectile, making it the first recorded bullet in history.
By 1276 fire lances had transitioned to metal barrels. The metal-barreled fire lance began to be used independently of the lance around the mid to late 13th century; these proto-cannons which fired co-viative projectiles, known as'eruptors,' were the forerunners of the hand cannon. By 1280 the Middle East had acquired fire lances. In 1396 European knights took up fire lances as mounted weapons; the last recorded usage of fire lances in Europe occurred during the Storming of Bristol in 1643. Early modern warfare Science and technology of the Song dynasty Jiao Yu Huolongjing Xun Lei Chong Adle, History of Civilizations of Central Asia: Development in Contrast: from the Sixteenth to the Mid-Nineteenth Century Ágoston, Gábor, Guns for the Sultan: Military Power and the Weapons Industry in the Ottoman Empire, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-60391-9 Agrawal, Jai Prakash, High Energy Materials: Propellants and Pyrotechnics, Wiley-VCH Andrade, The Gunpowder Age: China, Military Innovation, the Rise of the West in World History, Princeton University Press, ISBN 978-0-691-13597-7.
Arnold, The Renaissance at War, Cassell & Co, ISBN 0-304-35270-5 Benton, Captain James G.. A Course of Instruction in Ordnance and Gunnery. West Point, New York: Thomas Publications. ISBN 1-57747-079-6. Brown, G. I; the Big Bang: A History of Explosives, Sutton Publishing, ISBN 0-7509-1878-0. Buchanan, Brenda J. ed. Gunpowder and the State: A Technological History, Aldershot: Ashgate, ISBN 0-7546-5259-9 Chase, Firearms: A Global History to 1700, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-82274-2. Cocroft, Dangerous Energy: The archaeology of gunpowder and military explosives manufacture, Swindon: English Heritage, ISBN 1-85074-718-0 Cowley, Experience of War, Laurel. Cressy, Saltpeter: The Mother of Gunpowder, Oxford University Press Crosby, Alfred W. Throwing Fire: Projectile Technology Through History, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-79158-8. Curtis, W. S. Long Range Shooting: A Historical Perspective, WeldenOwen. Earl, Cornish Explosives, Cornwall: The Trevithick Society, ISBN 0-904040-13-5.
Easton, S. C. Roger Bacon and His Search for a Universal Science: A Reconsideration of the Life and Work of Roger Bacon in the Light of His
Holy Roman Empire
The Holy Roman Empire was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Western and Central Europe that developed during the Early Middle Ages and continued until its dissolution in 1806 during the Napoleonic Wars. The largest territory of the empire after 962 was the Kingdom of Germany, though it came to include the neighboring Kingdom of Bohemia, the Kingdom of Burgundy, the Kingdom of Italy, numerous other territories. On 25 December 800, Pope Leo III crowned the Frankish king Charlemagne as Emperor, reviving the title in Western Europe, more than three centuries after the fall of the earlier ancient Western Roman Empire in 476; the title continued in the Carolingian family until 888 and from 896 to 899, after which it was contested by the rulers of Italy in a series of civil wars until the death of the last Italian claimant, Berengar I, in 924. The title was revived again in 962 when Otto I was crowned emperor, fashioning himself as the successor of Charlemagne and beginning a continuous existence of the empire for over eight centuries.
Some historians refer to the coronation of Charlemagne as the origin of the empire, while others prefer the coronation of Otto I as its beginning. Scholars concur, however, in relating an evolution of the institutions and principles constituting the empire, describing a gradual assumption of the imperial title and role; the exact term "Holy Roman Empire" was not used until the 13th century, but the concept of translatio imperii, the notion that he—the sovereign ruler—held supreme power inherited from the ancient emperors of Rome, was fundamental to the prestige of the emperor. The office of Holy Roman Emperor was traditionally elective, although controlled by dynasties; the German prince-electors, the highest-ranking noblemen of the empire elected one of their peers as "King of the Romans", he would be crowned emperor by the Pope. The empire never achieved the extent of political unification as was formed to the west in France, evolving instead into a decentralized, limited elective monarchy composed of hundreds of sub-units: kingdoms, duchies, prince-bishoprics, Free Imperial Cities, other domains.
The power of the emperor was limited, while the various princes, lords and cities of the empire were vassals who owed the emperor their allegiance, they possessed an extent of privileges that gave them de facto independence within their territories. Emperor Francis II dissolved the empire on 6 August 1806 following the creation of the Confederation of the Rhine by emperor Napoleon I the month before. In various languages the Holy Roman Empire was known as: Latin: Sacrum Imperium Romanum, German: Heiliges Römisches Reich, Italian: Sacro Romano Impero, Czech: Svatá říše římská, Polish: Święte imperium rzymskie, Slovene: Sveto rimsko cesarstvo, Dutch: Heilige Roomse Rijk, French: Saint-Empire romain. Before 1157, the realm was referred to as the Roman Empire; the term sacrum in connection with the medieval Roman Empire was used beginning in 1157 under Frederick I Barbarossa: the term was added to reflect Frederick's ambition to dominate Italy and the Papacy. The form "Holy Roman Empire" is attested from 1254 onward.
In a decree following the 1512 Diet of Cologne, the name was changed to the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation, a form first used in a document in 1474. The new title was adopted because the Empire had lost most of its Italian and Burgundian territories to the south and west by the late 15th century, but to emphasize the new importance of the German Imperial Estates in ruling the Empire due to the Imperial Reform. By the end of the 18th century, the term "Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation" had fallen out of official use. Besides, contradicting the traditional view concerning that designation, Hermann Weisert has stated in a study on imperial titulature that, despite the claim of many textbooks, the name "Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation" never had an official status and points out that documents were thirty times as to omit the national suffix as include it. This, or the shortened "Roman Empire of the German Nation", is used in Germany to refer to the Holy Roman Empire. In a famous assessment of the name, the political philosopher Voltaire remarked sardonically: "This body, called and which still calls itself the Holy Roman Empire was in no way holy, nor Roman, nor an empire."
As Roman power in Gaul declined during the 5th century, local Germanic tribes assumed control. In the late 5th and early 6th centuries, the Merovingians, under Clovis I and his successors, consolidated Frankish tribes and extended hegemony over others to gain control of northern Gaul and the middle Rhine river valley region. By the middle of the 8th century, the Merovingians had been reduced to figureheads, the Carolingians, led by Charles Martel, had become the de facto rulers. In 751, Martel's son Pepin became King of the Franks, gained the sanction of the Pope; the Carolingians would maintain a close alliance with the Papacy. In 768, Pepin's son Charlemagne became King of the Franks and began an extensive expansion of the realm, he incorporated the territories of present-day France, northern Italy, beyond, linking the Frankish kingdom with Papal lands. In 797, the Eastern Roman Emperor Constantine VI was removed from the throne by his mother Irene who declared herself Empress; as the Church regarded a male Roman Emperor as the head of Christendom, Pope
The howdah pistol was a large-calibre handgun with two or four barrels, used in India and Africa from the beginning of the nineteenth century, into the early twentieth century, during the British Empire era. It was intended for defence against tigers and other dangerous animals that might be encountered in remote areas. Multi-barreled breech-loading designs were favoured over contemporary revolvers, due to their higher velocity and faster reloading potential; the term "howdah pistol" comes from a large platform mounted on the back of an elephant. Hunters in British Raj India, used howdahs as a platform for hunting, needed large-calibre side-arms for protection against close quarters animal attacks; the practice of hunting from the howdah basket on top of an Asian elephant was first made popular by the joint Anglo-Indian East India Company during the 1790s. The early howdah pistols were flintlock designs, it was not until about 60 years percussion models in single or double barrel configuration were seen.
By the 1890s and early 1900s cartridge-firing and rifled howdah pistols were standard. The first breech-loading howdah pistols were little more than sawn-off rifles in.577 Snider or.577/450 Martini–Henry calibre. This was practical in that the huntsman could use the same ammunition in rifle and pistol, as well as being a powerful round. English firearms makers manufactured specially-designed howdah pistols in both rifle calibres and standard pistol calibres such as.455 Webley and.476 Enfield. As a result, the term "howdah pistol" is applied to a number of English multi-barrelled handguns including the Lancaster pistol, various.577 calibre revolvers produced in England and Europe for a brief time in the mid-late 19th century. A howdah pistol with its closed breach shot at a higher velocity than a revolver of the same calibre, in that there was not the revolver's gas leakage at the cylinder. Although howdah pistols were for emergency defence against dangerous animals in Africa and India, British officers carried them for personal protection and battlefield use.
By the late 19th century, top-break revolvers in more practical calibres had become widespread, removing much of the traditional market for howdah pistols. Modern reproductions are available from Italian gun maker Pedersoli in.577 and.50 calibers, as well as in 20 bore. Lancaster pistol TP-82 Cosmonaut survival pistol Ithaca Auto & Burglar List of multiple barrel firearms Animal attacks Maze, Robert J.. Howdah to High Power. Tucson, Arizona: Excalibur Publications. ISBN 1-880677-17-2
A gun barrel is a crucial part of gun-type ranged weapons such as small firearms, artillery pieces and air guns. It is the straight shooting tube made of rigid high-strength metal, through which a contained rapid expansion of high-pressure gas is introduced behind a projectile in order to propel it out of the front end at a high velocity; the hollow interior of the barrel is called the bore. The measurement of the diameter of the bore is called the caliber. Caliber is measured in inches or millimetres; the first firearms were made at a time when metallurgy was not advanced enough to cast tubes capable of withstanding the explosive forces of early cannons, so the pipe needed to be braced periodically along its length for reinforcement, producing an appearance somewhat reminiscent of storage barrels being stacked together, hence the English name. Gun barrels are metal. However, the early Chinese, the inventors of gunpowder, used bamboo, which has a strong tubular stalk and is cheaper to obtain and process, as the first barrels in gunpowder projectile weapons such as the fire lances.
The Chinese were the first to master cast-iron cannon barrels, used the technology to make the earliest infantry firearms — the hand cannons. Early European guns were made of wrought iron with several strengthening bands of the metal wrapped around circular wrought iron rings and welded into a hollow cylinder. Bronze and brass were favoured by gunsmiths because of their ease of casting and their resistance to the corrosive effects of the combustion of gunpowder or salt water when used on naval vessels. Early firearms were muzzle-loading, with the gunpowder and the shot loaded from the front end of the barrel, were capable of only a low rate of fire due to the cumbersome loading process; the later-invented breech-loading designs provided a higher rate of fire, but early breechloaders lacked an effective way of sealing the escaping gases that leaked from the back end of the barrel, reducing the available muzzle velocity. During the 19th century, effective breechblocks were invented that sealed a breechloader against the escape of propellant gases.
Early cannon barrels were thick for their caliber. This was because manufacturing defects such as air bubbles trapped in the metal were common back in the days, played key factors in many gun explosions. A gun barrel must be able to hold in the expanding gas produced by the propellants to ensure that optimum muzzle velocity is attained by the projectile as it is being pushed out. If the barrel material cannot cope with the pressure within the bore, the barrel itself might suffer catastrophic failure and explode, which will not only destroy the gun but present a life-threatening danger to people nearby. Modern small arms barrels are made of carbon steel or stainless steel materials known and tested to withstand the pressures involved. Artillery pieces are made by various techniques providing reliably sufficient strength. In firearms terminology, fluting refers to the removal of material from a cylindrical surface creating rounded grooves, for the purpose of reducing weight; this is most done to the exterior surface of a rifle barrel, though it may be applied to the cylinder of a revolver or the bolt of a bolt-action rifle.
Most flutings on rifle barrels and revolver cylinders are straight, though helical flutings can be seen on rifle bolts and also rifle barrels. While the main purpose of fluting is just to reduce weight and improve portability, when adequately done it can retain the structural strength and rigidity and increase the overall specific strength. Fluting will increase the surface-to-volume ratio and make the barrel more efficient to cool after firing, though the reduced material mass means the barrel will heat up during firing; the chamber is the cavity at the back end of a breech-loading gun's barrel where the cartridge is inserted in position ready to be fired. In most firearms, the chamber is an integral part of the barrel made by reaming the rear bore of a barrel blank, with a single chamber within a single barrel. In revolvers, the chamber is a component of the gun's cylinder and separate from the barrel, with a single cylinder having multiple chambers that are rotated in turns into alignment with the barrel in anticipation of being fired.
Structurally, the chamber consists of the body and neck, the contour of which correspond to the casing shape of the cartridge it is designed to hold. The rear opening of the chamber is the breech of the whole barrel, sealed tight from behind by the bolt, making the front direction the path of least resistance during firing; when the cartridge's primer is struck by the firing pin, the propellant is ignited and deflagrates, generating high-pressure gas expansion within the cartridge case. However, the chamber restrains the cartridge case from moving, allowing the bullet to separate cleanly from the casing and be propelled forward along the barrel to exit out of the front end as a projectile; the act of chambering a gun refers to the process of loading a cartridge into the gun's chamber, either manually as in single loading, or via operating the weapon's own action as in pump action, lever action, bolt action or self-loading actions. In the case of an air gun, a pellet itself has no casing to be retained and will be inserted into the chamber (often called "seating
Austria the Republic of Austria, is a country in Central Europe comprising 9 federated states. Its capital, largest city and one of nine states is Vienna. Austria has an area of 83,879 km2, a population of nearly 9 million people and a nominal GDP of $477 billion, it is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north and Slovakia to the east and Italy to the south, Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the west. The terrain is mountainous, lying within the Alps; the majority of the population speaks local Bavarian dialects as their native language, German in its standard form is the country's official language. Other regional languages are Hungarian, Burgenland Croatian, Slovene. Austria played a central role in European History from the late 18th to the early 20th century, it emerged as a margraviate around 976 and developed into a duchy and archduchy. In the 16th century, Austria started serving as the heart of the Habsburg Monarchy and the junior branch of the House of Habsburg – one of the most influential royal houses in history.
As archduchy, it was a major component and administrative centre of the Holy Roman Empire. Following the Holy Roman Empire's dissolution, Austria founded its own empire in the 19th century, which became a great power and the leading force of the German Confederation. Subsequent to the Austro-Prussian War and the establishment of a union with Hungary, the Austro-Hungarian Empire was created. Austria was involved in both world wars. Austria is a parliamentary representative democracy with a President as head of state and a Chancellor as head of government. Major urban areas of Austria include Graz, Linz and Innsbruck. Austria is ranked as one of the richest countries in the world by per capita GDP terms; the country has developed a high standard of living and in 2018 was ranked 20th in the world for its Human Development Index. The republic declared its perpetual neutrality in foreign political affairs in 1955. Austria has been a member of the United Nations since 1955 and joined the European Union in 1995.
It is a founding member of the OECD and Interpol. Austria signed the Schengen Agreement in 1995, adopted the euro currency in 1999; the German name for Austria, Österreich, derives from the Old High German Ostarrîchi, which meant "eastern realm" and which first appeared in the "Ostarrîchi document" of 996. This word is a translation of Medieval Latin Marchia orientalis into a local dialect. Another theory says that this name comes from the local name of the mountain whose original Slovenian name is "Ostravica" - because it is steep on both sides. Austria was a prefecture of Bavaria created in 976; the word "Austria" was first recorded in the 12th century. At the time, the Danube basin of Austria was the easternmost extent of Bavaria; the Central European land, now Austria was settled in pre-Roman times by various Celtic tribes. The Celtic kingdom of Noricum was claimed by the Roman Empire and made a province. Present-day Petronell-Carnuntum in eastern Austria was an important army camp turned capital city in what became known as the Upper Pannonia province.
Carnuntum was home for 50,000 people for nearly 400 years. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the area was invaded by Bavarians and Avars. Charlemagne, King of the Franks, conquered the area in AD 788, encouraged colonization, introduced Christianity; as part of Eastern Francia, the core areas that now encompass Austria were bequeathed to the house of Babenberg. The area was known as the marchia Orientalis and was given to Leopold of Babenberg in 976; the first record showing the name Austria is from 996, where it is written as Ostarrîchi, referring to the territory of the Babenberg March. In 1156, the Privilegium Minus elevated Austria to the status of a duchy. In 1192, the Babenbergs acquired the Duchy of Styria. With the death of Frederick II in 1246, the line of the Babenbergs was extinguished; as a result, Ottokar II of Bohemia assumed control of the duchies of Austria and Carinthia. His reign came to an end with his defeat at Dürnkrut at the hands of Rudolph I of Germany in 1278. Thereafter, until World War I, Austria's history was that of its ruling dynasty, the Habsburgs.
In the 14th and 15th centuries, the Habsburgs began to accumulate other provinces in the vicinity of the Duchy of Austria. In 1438, Duke Albert V of Austria was chosen as the successor to his father-in-law, Emperor Sigismund. Although Albert himself only reigned for a year, henceforth every emperor of the Holy Roman Empire was a Habsburg, with only one exception; the Habsburgs began to accumulate territory far from the hereditary lands. In 1477, Archduke Maximilian, only son of Emperor Frederick III, married the heiress Maria of Burgundy, thus acquiring most of the Netherlands for the family. In 1496, his son Philip the Fair married Joanna the Mad, the heiress of Castile and Aragon, thus acquiring Spain and its Italian and New World appendages for the Habsburgs. In 1526, following the Battle of Mohács, Bohemia and the part of Hungary not occupied by the Ottomans came under Austrian rule. Ottoman expansion into Hungary led to frequent conflicts between the two empires evident in the Long War of 1593 to 1606.
The Turks made incursions into Styria nearly 20 times, of which some are c
The hand mortar is a firearm and early predecessor of modern grenade launchers, used in the late 17th century and 18th century to throw fused grenades. The action was similar to a flintlock, matchlock, or wheellock firearm, but the barrel was short 2 inches to 4 inches long, had a large bore to accommodate the grenade. After priming the firearm and adding the gunpowder, the shooter would light a grenade fuse, place the grenade in the muzzle of the mortar fire it at the enemy. However, accidents could occur if the lit grenade remained in the barrel. Additional modifications attempted to light the grenade using the burning gunpowder, but accounts say that the fuse would be forced into the grenade which would explode immediately; the low number of surviving specimens of this firearm indicate that it was not a popular weapon due to the safety issues. In his essay on the weapon, Hewitt opines that the mortar is among a variety of "projects for destruction which have never destroyed anything but the fortunes of their inventors."
In fact, under military exhibitions in The Official Report of the Calcutta International Exhibition, 1883-84 a hand mortar is described as "only a toy... never intended for service."Hand Mortars were to be found in the New World. References to a hand mortar being transferred in Maryland are found in the record of The Proceedings of the Council of Maryland in 1698. In 1872, a work entitled Life-boats and Other Means for Saving Life gave an account of a sailor using a hand mortar; the hand mortar was described as being able to throw a leaden projectile and a line a distance of 80 yards. At least one version of the hand mortar was invented by John Tinker in 1681. However, his mortar may have been an improvement on an earlier piece. A reference to this mortar may have appeared in a work entitled Ancient Armour which refers to a tinker's mortar. Another account refers to a hand mortar as a cohorn, attributes its invention to a Dutch engineer, Menno Van Coehoorn, who lived from 1641 to 1704. Between 1672 and 1740, the Royal Foundry of Berlin produced 302 hand mortars.
Additionally, a mortar at the Museum of Artillery in Woolwich, Great Britain bears the inscription Fondeur á Strasbourg and several other surviving pieces bear the coat of arms of Württemberg indicating that they might have been made there. The first references to the type of grenade used in a hand mortar occur in a 1472 work entitled Valturius, where an incendiary prototype may have been produced. However, widespread use of the explosive grenade does not occur until the early-to-mid-16th century under Francis I of France. An early casualty of this type of grenade was Count de Randan who died of shrapnel wounds to the legs from a grenade during the Siege of Rouen in 1562. Explosive grenades were made from brass and clay, incendiary projectiles were made from canvas, Nathanael Nye, Master Gunner of the City of Worcester in a work entitled Art of Gunnery published in 1647, remarks that the soldiers of his day were not fond of handling the grenades because they were too dangerous. While there are substantial records of infantry units called grenadiers throughout the 18th century in Europe, these units threw the grenades by hand.
Grenade launcher Type 89 grenade discharger Hand cannon Cohorn Fire lance