Saturday, October 12, 2019

War from the 16th Century to the Invention of Gunpowder Essay -- Artil

War from the 16th Century to the Invention of Gunpowder The invention of the powerful artillery guns would change man’s role in warring engagements. The artillery guns at first were very limited by their own design. The guns were very heavy and had to be transported by water, which meant that only towns and fortresses that were close to a body of water could be attacked with artillery also known as the cannon. There were also some fortresses that were impervious to the early cannon attacks based on strong designs or natural defenses. The French were able to penetrate the round shaped castles and large walls during the late 1400s by using concentrated fire of several small guns instead of a few large ones. A new design of smaller walls that were built in uneven lines, like a star shape, was implemented to strengthen the area called crownworks or hornworks. Other modifications of new designs included lower and thicker walls, gun towers that projected at an angle, intervals of guns for fields of fire, wide and deep ditches, and pillboxes. Of course with the new design of castles came new ways to attack. Some effective ways to attack these castles, but also rare ways to attack, were by surprise, by storm, or by treachery. The most common way to attack the castles were long term engagements that consisted of either surrounding the castle or getting in close enough that the castles guns would be ranged over the position. The long-term methods consisted of starving out the population, forcing surrender, or by mining and bombardment from close range. The use of firepower also began to put an end to the use of headlong charges and hand-to-hand combat during the Renaissance years. The differences between firearms and the bow were obscene at the beginning of the rifle’s evolution. An archer could accurately hit a target at lengths of 200 meters and discharge ten arrows a minute, whereas the arquebus, or rifleman, only had accuracy at 100 meters and took several minutes to reload. Although the new weapons at primacy did not have the accuracy or the range of the bow, the Italians immediately implemented them into their arsenals. The greatest advantage of the early rifles was that the weapon could be mastered in a matter of months, but it could take up to ten years to master the bow. Eventually the muskets overtook the battlefield, replacing t... ...rength of China laid in the overwhelming amounts of personnel serving in the armed forces. Japan made quick use of the new weapons, but concentration was not focused on rapid reloading. The Japanese put more training into accuracy and developed the volley in order to maintain a succession of well-aimed shots. The castles of Japan were also modified to sustain against any type of horizontal attack. The walls were built in front of the hills and backed strongly by the earth. Once stability was restored the Japanese empire began a phase of demilitarization by outlawing guns, tearing down fortifications of defeated enemies, and forbidding books concerning military matters. In both empires of the Far East, sieges were made by mass assaults, mining, or blockades rather than by bombardment. WORKS CITED Parker, Geoffrey. The Military Revolution: Military Innovation and the Rise of the West 1500-1800. (Cambridge, United Kingdom:Cambridge University Press, 1996). Chap 1-4 Preston, Richard A., Alex Roland, and Sydney F. Wise. Men In Arms: A History of Warfare and its interrelationships With Western Society. (Belmont, California:Wadsworth/ Thomson Learning, 2001). Chap 8

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