Before the Gun, There Was the Gonne

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What we all have in common here on the Collector's Forum is a passion for firearms. We share in the history, development, implementation and geopolitical consequences.

But before the first gun was shouldered some time in the 15th century, gunpowder had been throwing fire and projectiles for at least 200 years. And an infantry soldier could use a gonne. I won't get into the debate of whether gunpowder was first formulated in China or Europe. Instead, I'd like to show you what I found at a yardsale today.

It appears to be an eight-shot hand gonne (handgonne, hand cannon), which could be utilized by an individual or in tandem. It's well aged piece of cast iron, and missing its handle. The pole could be braced against the ground or another solid object, or held underarm to absorb recoil. This one could be equipped with eight loads of powder, rocks, ceramic, lead or iron shot. It has eight fuse holes, and could be ignited with flame, coals or slow burning match.

Not very accurate, and not meant for long range. But it had to be quite an attention getter when it was first used in battle.

My best google-fu identifies mine as Chinese, and from the late 15th to early 17th century. I may be way off! And anyone with any better information, please be free to add to this early hand cannon topic.

Pics, and thanks for looking.


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My uncle had one of those!, as a kid he told us it was a chinese incense burner................long gone now both uncle and the burner. Cool little thing.
 
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Next is the Bedouin Shabria found in a tool box drawer. It took a little dickering to get out of buying the entire beat up box full of junk. But $20 later, it was mine.

The shabria is in poor condition. The wooden grip handle is cracked on both sides, and likely once had a metal covering. The blade, which has an illegible roundel and signature, has dark splotchy patina. It has many scratches, dull edges and rounded point.

The scabbard appears to be two pieces of thinly sliced horn, and covered with decorative stamped copper on the front and tin with a soldered belt loop on the back. The two halves are crimped together and wrapped with wire and a silver band.

I wouldn't dare to guess the age. Some pics and thanks for looking.

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55_grain

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How did you possibly find that at a yard sale?? "I see you have old plates, a broken mower, and some romance novels, But do you have any medieval black powder weapons or plasma pistols?"

I mean, really? ?

55_grain

PS: I do enjoy your c&r posts!
 
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This weekend's yardsale circuit netted a Japanese Civil Defense helmet shell. No liner or insignia emblem, but a genuine WWII relic in original finish condition, nonetheless.

Enjoy.

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