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About this product
- DescriptionGunpowder studies are still in their infancy despite the long-standing civil and military importance of this explosive since its discovery in China in the mid-ninth century AD. In this second volume by contributors who meet regularly at symposia of the International Committee for the History of Techlogy (ICOHTEC), the research is again rooted in the investigation of the techlogy of explosives manufacture, but the fact that the chapters range in scope from the Old World to the New, from sources of raw materials in south-east Asia to the complications of manufacture in the West, shows that the story is more than the simple one of how an intriguing product was made. This volume is the first to develop the implications of the subject, t just in the sense of relating it to changing military techlogies, but in that of seeing the securing of gunpowder supplies as fundamental to the power of the state and imperial pretensions.The search for saltpetre, for example, an essential ingredient of gunpowder, became a powerful engine of sea-going European trade from the early seventeenth century. Smaller states like Venice were unable to form these distant connections, and so to sustain a gunpowder army. Stronger states like France and Britain were able to do so, and became even more powerful as the demand for improved explosives fostered national strengths - leading to a development of the sciences, especially chemistry, in the former case, and of manufacturing techniques in the latter.
- Author BiographyBrenda J. Buchanan is a Research Fellow in the Department of Social and Policy Sciences, University of Bath, UK.
- PublisherTaylor & Francis Ltd
- Date of Publication28/05/2006
- SubjectMilitary History
- Country of PublicationUnited Kingdom
- ImprintAshgate Publishing Limited
- Content NoteIncludes 81 b&w illustrations and 8 tables
- Weight809 g
- Width156 mm
- Height234 mm
- Spine25 mm
- Edited byBrenda J. Buchanan
- Running Time430
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