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93

Yes, a trained archer can probably put more effective shots on an unarmored target than a trained musketman of the 18th century. The problem is that word trained. Consider that most nations in the 18th century did not have a standing army. Men were called up, served their time, and left. That means you either need to use skills they already have (in WWII ...


35

Rum was easily obtained in the sugarcane rich Caribbean and olden day South Seas Pirates, who would drink anything they could get their hands on if it had a kick, were associated with the drinking of rum. So, while they would drink other forms of liquor if they could obtain it, the average Pirate crew member drank what he could afford, and that's what made ...


21

Historical evidence suggests, and I am writing from the wiki article of origin of Rum, that during the late 16th and early 17th century, sugarcane plantation slaves in the Caribbean islands discovered a byproduct of sugar-making i.e. Molasses can be converted to alcoholic beverage. After fine tuning the distillation process they produced the refined Rum. And ...


18

They got their weapons from the Hôtel national des Invalides, which were stormed by a Parisian mob earlier the same day. Much of the armaments previously stored there had been removed just two days earlier, but the revolutionaries still managed to acquire ~28,000-32,000 (sources vary) muskets hidden in the cellars and the church. They also found several ...


12

Origins and availability or the drink aside (this was covered by Rico and the Major already)... life on a sailing ship was hard. Especially ships prepared for combat -- like a navy's warships -- had large crews, which made for very cramped living and no privacy. The work aboard was hard and dangerous, and that's before the guns were ran out to engage an ...


12

I don't have details for 1792, but the following are from James' Naval History for January 1793 (so probably good enough to get an idea of the relative strengths of the fleets). These cover the principal fleets. At Brest Ready or fitting for Sea; 1 120-gun ship of the line 2 110-gun ships of the line 4 80-gun ships of the line 12 74-gun ships of the line ...


10

UPDATE: Aaron Fogleman estimates that 585,000 people "immigrated" (many involuntarily) to the 13 colonies between 1700-1775. If they all survived until the time of the Revolution, then 24% of the population at the time of the Revolution would be foreign born (585,000/2,400,000 = .244). Of course this is an absurd assumption, so treat this estimate as an ...


10

An important aspect that seems to be neglected in many of the answers here is that while technical aspects cannot be completely dismissed, they are secondary to other concerns. To be specific, the primary weapon of heavy cavalry is its momentum, while heavy infantry (among which musketeers from 18th century onward are counted) relies on its discipline in ...


10

One often missed factor is that arrows are delicate and require skilled fletchers to make them. The English invasion of France under Edward IV in 1475 required two years lead time producing enough arrows to supply his troops on campaign. Also the logistics of transporting arrows is problematic. A sheaf of 24 arrows takes up considerably more space than a ...


8

There have already been some good explanations, regarding relative ease of use for muskets, as well as less training required to use, but I have not seen two constants of campaigning considered: Rain and Disease. Gunpowder and bowstrings both need to be kept dry. On a bow this was possible by unstringing it, and tucking the string somewhere relatively dry. ...


7

In addition to Drux's fine answer, Napoleon's ability to evade the British was down to a number of factors but miscommunication by the British played a very large part. When Sir Sidney Smith was assigned to the Levant Squadron, he was also given a diplomatic mission by the British Cabinet. However, this additional role was not communicated to his superiors ...


7

There's a lot of very good answers already; but I'd like to add on to what @Schwern has said from a Japanese perspective. When the musket was introduced in Japan in the 16th century, it quickly overtook archery in terms of importance. This is despite the fact that archery remained (and remains) a culturally important and valued skill among the samurai. ...


7

The French navy suffered considerably due to the French revolution. Having finished the American War of Independence on something approaching a high (comparatively speaking), the French navy suffered a reverse that it never fully recovered from until well after the finish of the Napoleonic Wars. Like most other European navies of the time, the officers ...


7

Note that for the time period of interest there was no single German state, as we are talking not only long before the German unification of the mid Nineteenth Century but also well before the simplification of German states that occurred during the Napoleonic period. Consequently: Up to that time [1871] several dozen independent German States and ...


6

Schwern had a lot of very good points, but there are other factors as well. siege warfare. Most of the battles in 17th and 18th century were sieges, where at least one side was fortified. Bows and crossbows have to be aimed relatively high to shoot at longer ranges. This means both that it's easier to protect against them with a simple wooden roof, and ...


6

The Cabinet Historique et topographique militaire was created by a decree the 28th August 1794. The decree goes in detail about the work and the organization to the point of naming who does what. A second decree (16/06/1795) has also elements of organization. The decrees don't mention office hours. The work done by the bureau in support of the armies was ...


6

There is two questions here, since "political elite" did not (and does not) equate to membership in congress. In terms of the physical overlap of the two Congresses, let's examine the composition of the First United States Congress. In the Senate, only four senators out of 25 (+3 replacements), or 16% (14.3% counting replacements) had not previously served ...


6

According to Major Adye's "Bombardier and Pocket Gunner" (2nd ed., London, 1802, page7) The cartouche boxes of the [British] infantry are made of so many shapes and sizes, that it is impossible to say exactly what ammunition they may contain, but most of them can carry 60 rounds. Also a table on page 79, notes that musket cartridges were carried in ...


6

The short answer to your question is that for much of his early life Napoleon was a Corsican patriot but only a French opportunist. He inherited from his father a fierce love of both Corsica and Pasquale Paoli, and did not consider himself French nor was he particularly loyal to France outside of the fact that it gave him an opportunity to move up in life. ...


5

It is perhaps not strictly accurate to say warrant officers were appointed by the Board of Admiralty. In general, they actually received their warrants from the Navy Board, which was the Royal Navy's administrative body until it was merged into the Admiralty in 1832. The Navy Board kept records of candidates for a warrant. When a vacancy opens up on a ship, ...


5

From HERE Sir, Agreeable to Major General Mathew’s Order I send a Return of the Deficiencies in the Seventeenth Company. We have at present one Cartridge Box for each man, but as they hold eighteen Rounds only I shall be extremely thankfull for an Order to compleat us to two per man. I am Sir with great Respect Your most Obedt. Humble Servant George ...


5

One of the answers is the effect of Muskets and bayonets on Cavalry. An crossbowman needs someone else with a pole arm to protect him from cavalry. Formed infantry with muskets and bayonets can defend themselves from cavalry charges. Together with the Musket's higher rate of fire and greater stopping power at shortish ranges that tips the balance well in ...


5

We have the following statements in Burke's writings: They [leaders of previous revolutions] were not like Jew brokers contending with each other who could best remedy with fraudulent circulation and depreciated paper the wretchedness and ruin brought on by their degenerate councils. (Reflections on the Revolution in France) We have in London very ...


5

The Congress of the Confederation could "ascertain" and "appropriate" money from states or make "requisitions" on the States, as is stated in the Articles of Confederation: The United States in Congress assembled shall have authority . . . to ascertain the necessary sums of money to be raised for the service of the United States, and to appropriate ...


5

There can be little doubt that indentured servitude decreased as reliance on slave labor increased. However, the dwindling supply of indentured European labor must be considered as at least one of the reasons American planters increasingly turned to an enslaved African labor force. Nonetheless, without the increased availability of enslaved Africans, ...


4

Probably not. It's impossible to prove a negative like this, so this answer is necessarily inferential. Let's start by looking at Franklin's letter: Benjamin Franklin to John Bartram London, Jan. 11, 1770. My ever dear Friend: I received your kind letter of Nov. 29, with the parcel of seeds, for which I am greatly obliged to you. I cannot ...


4

Before making statements about the US Constitution, I suggest reading it. The original Constitution said nothing about who does or who does not have the right to vote. Voting standards during the colonial and immediate post-colonial period were the same as those in Britain, which operated on a simple principle: whoever paid taxes was entitled to a single ...


4

Fairly simply, the Federalists had a majority in both houses of Congress at the time, and held the Presidency. So they had the power to do it. They were suffering withering attacks from Jefferson and Madison's newly organized Democratic-Republican Party, which had just run its first presidential campaign in the previous cycle, and had developed its own ...


4

I can address your confusion in latter part at least. According to Maddison, The UK's GDP passed France's sometime between 1700 and 1820 and Spain's by 1700. According to Bairoch, England's GDP passed France's between 1830 and 1840 and was far past Spain's by 1800 (when his numbers start). So at the absolute least, it appears the UK's economy was doing ...


3

Logically, if armor made archery obsolete, then why would you bring back archery knowing that it can just be countered again with armor? Moreover, that arrows could be stopped by armor while bullets couldn't pretty strongly argues archery was essentially uncompetitive with guns. What others said about archers training makes sense too, I'm just saying the ...



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