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    Invention of Gunpowder  new window
Gunpowder, reportedly produced from saltpetre, sulphur and charcoal, is a Chinese invention. Earliest records of the formula date to the 800s. The Chinese used gunpowder to propel rockets, and to produce incendiary and explosive projectiles thrown by catapult. By the 1200s, a Chinese Bureau of Munitions was operating seven factories that produced 7,000 rockets and 21,000 bombs a day. The weaponry included a so-called "thunder-crash bomb", which the Chinese unleashed in 1232 on Mongol troops besieging Kaifeng, capital of the north Chinese Jin Empire. During the later years of the 13th century, the Chinese invented cannons, using gunpowder to fire projectiles from metal barrels.

One of the first recorded applications of gunpowder in European military history occurred at the 1346 Battle of Crecy, where the English arsenal included little gunpowder "firepots." These had little impact on the outcome of the battle, acting merely as curious adjuncts to the English longbows that won the day. By 1350, however, Petrarch was able to make the observation that guns had become "... as common and familiar as any other kind of arms." The Ottoman Turks embraced gunpowder with enthusiasm, using it with spectacular effect during their assault on Constantinople in 1453. In preparation for the attack, Mehmet II hired a European craftsman to manufacture seven huge cannons, including one 25-ton monster that could fire stone balls almost a mile.
 
 
Gunpowder, reportedly produced from saltpetre, sulphur and charcoal, is a Chinese invention. Earliest records of the formula date to the 800s. The Chinese used gunpowder to propel rockets, and to produce incendiary and explosive projectiles thrown by catapult. By the 1200s, a Chinese Bureau of Munitions was operating seven factories that produced 7,000 rockets and 21,000 bombs a day. The weaponry included a so-called "thunder-crash bomb", which the Chinese unleashed in 1232 on Mongol troops besieging Kaifeng, capital of the north Chinese Jin Empire. During the later years of the 13th century, the Chinese invented cannons, using gunpowder to fire projectiles from metal barrels.

One of the first recorded applications of gunpowder in European military history occurred at the 1346 Battle of Crecy, where the English arsenal included little gunpowder "firepots." These had little impact on the outcome of the battle, acting merely as curious adjuncts to the English longbows that won the day. By 1350, however, Petrarch was able to make the observation that guns had become "... as common and familiar as any other kind of arms." The Ottoman Turks embraced gunpowder with enthusiasm, using it with spectacular effect during their assault on Constantinople in 1453. In preparation for the attack, Mehmet II hired a European craftsman to manufacture seven huge cannons, including one 25-ton monster that could fire stone balls almost a mile. More new window

 
    Wujing Zongyao, 1st Record Gunpowder
  Wujing Zongyao, 1st Record Gunpowder
The "Wujing Zongyao" (literally "Collection of the Most Important Military Techniques") was the first book in history to record the written formulas for gunpowder solutions containing saltpetre, sulphur, and charcoal, along with many added ingredient...
 
    Emperor Gaozong of Song
  Emperor Gaozong of Song
Emperor Gaozong, born Zhao Gou, was the tenth emperor of the Song Dynasty of China, and the first emperor of the Southern Song. He reigned from 1127 to 1162. He fled south after the Jurchens overran Kaifeng hence the beginning of the Southern Song dy...
 
    Roger Bacon
  Roger Bacon
Roger Bacon was a friar living in 13th century England, who, hundreds of years after his death became popularly known as a powerful sorcerer. He is most widely known among scholars as being one of the first people to use experimental methods in alche...
 
    Kublai Khan, Mongolian Leader
  Kublai Khan, Mongolian Leader
Kublai Khan was a Mongolian leader who made an impact on China, not only through conquest, but also by ruling successfully. Many of the rulers before him were brutally land-hungry and apathetic to the conquered people; however, Kublai challenged the...
 
    Mehmed II, The Conqueror
  Mehmed II, The Conqueror
Mehmed II (1432-1481), nicknamed the conqueror, was the sultan of the Ottoman Empire a short time in 1444 to 1446, and from 1451 to 1481. Mehmed II brought an end to the Byzantine Empire by capturing Constantinople in 1453 (during the well-known Sieg...
 
    The Fall of Constantinople
  The Fall of Constantinople
The Fall of Constantinople was the capture of the capital of the Byzantine Empire which occurred after a siege laid by the Ottoman Empire, under the command of Sultan Mehmed II. The siege lasted from Thursday, 5 April 1453 until Tuesday, 29 May 1453...
 
    Du Pont, Founder DuPont Company - 1802
  Du Pont, Founder DuPont Company - 1802
Among the young men whom Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier deeply influenced was Eleuthère Irénée du Pont (1771–1834), the founder of the DuPont Company. His father, Pierre Samuel du Pont—an economist, government official, and publicist—was among those attem...
 
       
         



 
 
         
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