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Early Modern Warfare

Origins of Cannon
• 10th century—gunpowder
and flame projector tubes
were first used in China
• Developed hand
cannon—first man
portable firearm
• By the 13th century, the
Chinese had developed
• By the 14th century, they
had created primitive

Earliest formula for Gunpowder .

Chinese Hand Cannon .

Islam • Muslims adopted gunpowder technology from Mongols – Used exploding shells when invading Japan • Developed a version of the hand cannon • Dabbled in use of rockets • Developed some cannon • Abus Gun—bazooka? .

Dardanelles Gun—Ottoman Bombard .

Firearms in Europe • First significant firearms in Europe—cannon and bombards • Cannon became a major component of siege technology in the 14th and 15th centuries – Quickly supplanted other siege weapons • The Europeans introduced the ‘bored’ cannon—as opposed to the ‘cast cannon’ – More accurate and durable .

Matchlock Firearms • First man-portable firearms • Utilized a fuse (slow match)—would ignite primer in order to fire the payload • Difficult to use—long reload time • Difficult to stay hidden • Moisture limited use • Developed Snaplock variant – Quicker. but motion would often extinguish the match .

Firing a Matchlock Weapon .

The Arquebus • First firearms in Europe emerged in early 15th century • The arquebus required a stand to balance – Very inaccurate • Full plate armor is introduced in order to deflect the bullets and turn edged weapons—from 1400-1650 .

Wheelock Firearms • Developed early 16th century • Solved some problems of matchlock system • Did not radically change the use of firearms— does make them more dependable – Easier to use in inclement weather .

Flintlock Firearms • ca. 1690—flintlock rifle introduced – Quickly replaced all earlier firearms technology • More weather-resistant • Reduced misfires • Improved rate of fire – Could have multiple barrels • First rifled barrels— increased accuracy .

Changing Nature of Warfare • Radically increased the size and scale of warfare – France fielded average of 20.000 men by 1700 • Warfare becomes increasingly deadly – Volley fire increases casualties • Becomes less decisive – Huge. slow-moving armies take months to maneuver • War also becomes more devastating – Armies increase in size. but logistical support does not improve – Armies resort to massive scale of pillaging and looting • Wars also become longer – 30 Years War.000 men in 1550 – France fielded 500. 80 Years War • New forms of fortification are introduced – Polygonal fortifications .

Model of Polygonal Fort .

New Technology of Fortification .

sloping walls replace the high. thick walls of the Middle Ages – Designed to deflect cannon balls • Star shaped—ensured that each bastion could be supported by other bastions – No “dead ground” for attackers to take cover in .Polygonal Forts • Low.

Bourtange Fort. Netherlands .

or threerank deep line formation – Allowed most muskets to be brought to bear – Most commonly used battle formation.Used against cavalry. albeit with heavy casualties.Light infantry would advance—first to fire to draw the enemy to attack. or artillery fire in the case of plain squares • Skirmishers .Typically used while marching – Effective at breaking through line formations. first line would kneel with their muskets angled upward (much like a pike) – The second and third lines fire at approaching cavalry – Ineffective against combined cavalry and infantry. • Line .A simple two. – Sharpshooters target officers .New Infantry Formations • Column . – First rank would kneel after firing • Allow the second rank to fire • Square . – Bayonets fixed.

Column and Line .

Square .

Deployment of Forces .

Cavalry • Firearms reduce the dominant role of cavalry – Remain in use until 19th century • Light cavalry replace medieval heavy cavalry – Dragoons—trained in horse riding and infantry-style combat – Employed firearms .

Spanish War of Succession .

Naval Warfare • Naval warfare is permanently transformed by the introduction of firearms – Naval warfare had been essentially unchanged since antiquity – Basically infantry combat • Now focused on missile combat and firepower .

The Battle of Lepanto .