Sunday, November 24, 2019

Gun Powder essays

Gun Powder essays Gunpowder had its origin in China way back in the 7th century. Though most historians confirm that the Chinese were the first to discover it we are not able to ascribe the discovery to any single person. While some say that the Chinese alchemists discovered gunpowder (also known as black powder) there is another story that states that a Chinese cook accidentally stumbled upon it when he mixed up certain chemicals in this cooking vessel. Initially the Chinese used gunpowder only in fireworks though gradually gunpowder began to be used for military purposes. The Chinese used to stuff it inside bamboo sticks called as pao chuk' and used it in their warfare. [5thofNovember]. By the turn of the fourteenth century gun powder technology had spread to every country in the world and since that time it has been used as the main propellant for fireworks until the nineteenth century when nitro cellulose began to replace it. The general composition of gunpowder is 75% of sodium nitrate (saltpeter), 15% charcoal and 10% of sulphur. [Dept of Ordinance and Gunnery]. That the Chinese knew the gun powder as early as the 9th century is attested by the following text from one of the earliest Chinese books Classified Essentials of the Mysterious Tao of the True Origins of Things' by Chen Yuan Miao Tao Yao (850 A.D), "Some have heated together sulphur, realgar, and saltpetre with honey; smoke (and flames) result, so that their hands and faces have been burnt, and even the whole house (where they were working) burned down" [Joseph Needham]. The first ever evidence of Gunpowder in the western world is from the text Liber Ignum' (The book of fire 1280 A.D) by Marcus Graecus where he explains the composition of gunpowder, "The second kind of flying fire is made in this way. Take 1 lb. of native sulfur, 2 lb. of linden or willow charcoal, 6 lb. of saltpeter, which three thing are very finely p...

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