How did the Chinese invent gunpowder? (2023)

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How did the Chinese invent gunpowder?

Gunpowder was invented by Chinese Taoist alchemists about 1000 A.D. when they tried to find a potion to gain human immortality by mixing elemental sulfur, charcoal, and saltpeter.

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How did Chinese make gunpowder?

Gunpowder was invented by Chinese alchemists in the 9th century. Originally, it was made by mixing elemental sulfur, charcoal, and saltpeter (potassium nitrate). The charcoal traditionally came from the willow tree, but grapevine, hazel, elder, laurel, and pine cones have all been used.

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How did the Chinese first use their invention of gunpowder?

Gunpowder was first use in warfare as an incendiary, or fire-producing, compound. Small packages of gunpowder wrapped in paper or bamboo were attached to arrows and lit with a fuse. Bombs of gunpowder mixed with scrap iron would be launched with catapults.

How was gunpowder first made?

Originally, gunpowder was made by mixing elemental sulfur, charcoal, and saltpeter (potassium nitrate). There was no definitive opinion as to what the ratios should be, and this changed dramatically from country to country and over time.

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Did China invent gunpowder first?

Gunpowder is the first explosive to have been developed. Popularly listed as one of the "Four Great Inventions" of China, it was invented during the late Tang dynasty (9th century) while the earliest recorded chemical formula for gunpowder dates to the Song dynasty (11th century).

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How did they make saltpeter?

The mining process involved extracting the calcium nitrate using water and large square vats to filter the cave dirt. A solution of water and calcium nitrate would then be pumped to the surface where it was combined with materials such as wood ash, and sometimes even ox blood, to create the saltpetre.

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Why didn't the Chinese use gunpowder?

According to Europeans, the Confucian bureaucracy of China (which, to them, was always a single peaceful empire) found gunpowder to be dirty and loud, and thus frowned upon any innovation. They supposedly did not recognise the military potential of gunpowder, thinking of it as only useful for fireworks.

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What is gunpowder made of now?

The current standard composition for the gunpowder manufactured by pyrotechnicians was adopted as long ago as 1780. Proportions by weight are 75% potassium nitrate (known as saltpeter or saltpetre), 15% softwood charcoal, and 10% sulfur.

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What is black powder made of?

Black powder is a low explosive material comprised of potassium nitrate (saltpeter), sulfur and charcoal. While used as a propellant in fireworks and pyrotechnics, it is also used in some ammunition and muzzleloaders.

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Who first used gunpowder as a weapon?

The Chinese first used gunpowder in warfare in 904, as incendiary projectiles called "flying fires." Its use was soon expanded to explosive grenades hurled from catapults.

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Where does saltpeter come from naturally?

Potassium nitrate, or saltpeter, is a naturally occurring mineral that is vital to the production of gunpowder. Found in limestone caves in the Arkansas Ozarks, it became one of the state's most important chemical industries during the Civil War due to the Confederacy's demand for arms.

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How long does gunpowder last?

Under proper storage, modern smokeless powder can last for decades. However, this does not mean the reloader can ignore how the powder is stored, particularly if in an uncontrolled environment such as a garage or storage building.

How did the Chinese invent gunpowder? (2023)
What are the 4 great inventions of ancient China?

Papermaking, printing, gunpowder and the compass - the four great inventions of ancient China-are significant contributions of the Chinese nation to world civilization.

Which country invented the gun?

The origin of firearms began with gunpowder and its invention, mostly likely in China, more than 1,000 years ago.

Did the Chinese invent guns?

Another example is firearms. The Chinese invented early prototypes of firearms and cannons during the Song period (960–1279). The technology, which had become sophisticated by the end of that period, was acquired by China's neighbours through various means, principally through contact on the battlefield.

What does saltpeter do to a human being?

Saltpeter and other nitrates have a long history of medical use, but it is toxic in high doses and can produce symptoms ranging from a mild headache and upset stomach to kidney damage and dangerously altered pressure.

Is saltpeter in urine?

Urine can in fact be used in the manufacture of gunpowder, and it has historically been a very important source of one of the crucial ingredients in gunpowder — saltpeter, also known as niter.

What does saltpeter taste like?

Potassium nitrate is white in colour and soluble in water; it has a vitreous lustre and a cool and salty taste.

Why did Native Americans not have gunpowder?

They hadn't invented it, and nobody had brought it. Gunpowder was first invented in China for use in fireworks. The Chinese did not originally use it in firearms themselves. How did the Europeans' treatment of Native Americans change after they began settling in North America?

What weapons did China invent?

Gunpowder was a Chinese invention that revolutionized warfare. The Chinese used explosives on a wide scale beginning in the tenth and eleventh centuries. The cannons, flamethrowers, and grenades that they used in battle were quickly adopted by European forces for battles on land and at sea.

Is gunpowder illegal in China?

In China, owning guns, gunpowder, and ammunition is illegal for most of the population, therefore making it on the list of countries with the most strict gun laws.

Is any gunpowder made in the USA?

There are perhaps from fifty to one hundred gunpowder mills in the United States. The principal companies are Du PONT's, in Delaware; HAZZARD's, at Enfield, Conn.; LAFLIN, SMITH & BOIES, at Saugerties; the Oriental Gunpowder Company, of Boston, and the Schaghticoke Gunpowder Company, at Schaghticoke.

Do bullets still have gunpowder in them?

Though it has largely been supplanted by smokeless powder as a propellant for ammunition in guns, black powder is still widely used for ignition charges, primers, fuses, and blank-fire charges in military ammunition.

Where can I find saltpeter?

Saltpeter can be tough to find early in the game, as it may not always be for sale from merchants. It can sometimes be found in random containers, but for a surefire way to obtain some, complete the Side Quest: Contract: Devil by the Well.

Is black powder illegal in the US?

To answer the original question, yes it's LEGAL for a prohibited person to purchase, transfer, possess, use, or have under the person's custody or control black powder firearms. That's because black powder firearms are defined as an "antique firearm" under Federal and State laws.

Why do people eat black powder?

Activated charcoal is a fine, odorless, black powder often used in emergency rooms to treat overdoses. Some people claim it can also reduce flatulence, promote kidney health, and lower cholesterol levels.

Is black powder Edible?

Description. Onyx Black is a fine edible glitter powder that shines like a chalcedony in liquid.

What is the oldest gun in the world?

The Heilongjiang hand cannon or hand-gun is a bronze hand cannon manufactured no later than 1288 and is the world's oldest confirmed surviving firearm. It weighs 3.55 kg (7.83 pounds) and is 34 centimeters (13.4 inches) long.

Did guns exist before gunpowder?

The ancestor of the first guns appeared in the first half of the 12th century, with a weapon known as the “fire lance”. This was a spear with a gunpowder charge in a bamboo tube attached near the end of the shaft.

Who made the first gun in America?

Samuel Colt developed the first mass-produced, multi-shot, revolving firearms. Various revolving designs had been around for centuries, but precision parts couldn't be made with available technologies. Colt was the first to apply Industrial Age machining tools to the idea.

Can I buy potassium nitrate?

You used to be able to buy potassium nitrate as saltpeter in many garden supply stores. While it is difficult to find saltpeter, you can still purchase potassium nitrate, which is used to make smoke bombs and certain other fireworks.

Is saltpeter the same as Epsom salt?

Epsom salt is a source of magnesium that is often used in sandy soils that are naturally deficient in magnesium. Saltpeter is a fertilizer that was originally made from bat guano. Modern saltpeter is made from artificial sources and is used to provide a source of nitrogen and potassium.

Why is it called saltpeter?

It is found in impure form, often called saltpetre (also called nitre), its name derived from the Latin words sal patrae, meaning “salt of the rock,” as it is often found as a white material deposited on the surface of rocks.

Does ammo go bad with age?

Ammunition doesn't “expire” per se, but the gunpowder looses potency over time. The largest risk to shooting old ammunition isn't a failure to fire, it's the risk that you will actually fire the shot and it doesn't have enough momentum to make it out the barrel.

Does ammo go bad?

Ammunition isn't a perishable good - if stored correctly, it can last almost indefinitely. Whether it was stored correctly or not is another matter. Ammunition isn't like the still-edible 5000-year-old honey found in Egyptian tombs; ready to eat and spread on toast.

What ruins gun powder?

Worse, black powder can be permanently ruined by water. This is because it's a mixture of saltpeter (potassium nitrate, KNO3), sulfur, and charcoal, and saltpeter is water-soluble. If you get it wet enough, the saltpeter can be completely washed out of the mixture.

What did the Chinese accidentally invent?

While trying to discover a potion of immortality, Chinese alchemists of the Tang Dynasty accidentally discovered saltpeter, the main ingredient of gunpowder.

What will replace gunpowder?

What you call “modern gunpowder” - the propellant in gun cartridges - isn't remotely related to gunpowder. Cordite is a completely different chemical to gunpowder, and it replaced gunpowder because it is better suited to task. If some better chemical came along, then it would replace cordite.

What is gunpowder still used for today?

Although largely obsolete in modern weaponry, gunpowder, also known as black powder, is still used in historical weapons, fireworks and pyrotechnics.

What has China invented recently?

The respondents' top answers were high-speed rail, mobile payment, bike sharing, and e-commerce. Since then, Chinese media and officials have drawn on this to promote these technologies as China's "four new great inventions" in modern times.

Why was ancient China so successful?

The Ancient Chinese were famous for their inventions and technology. Many of their inventions had lasting impact on the entire world. Other inventions led to great feats of engineering like the Grand Canal and the Great Wall of China.

Which country has invented the most things in all human history?

The United States

The U.S. is the hub of all innovative inventions.

What was the first weapon ever made?

Stone tips are one of the earliest forms of weapons assumed by archaeologists, with the earliest surviving examples of stone tips with animal blood dating to around 64,000 years ago from the Natal, in what is now South Africa.

What civilization had guns first?

The first devices identified as guns or proto-guns appeared in China from around AD 1000. By the end of the 13th century, they had become "true guns," metal barrel firearms that fired single projectiles which occluded the barrel. Gunpowder and gun technology spread throughout Eurasia during the 14th century.

When were guns banned in the US?

The 10-year ban was passed by the U.S. Congress on August 25, 1994 and was signed into law by President Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. The ban applied only to weapons manufactured after the date of the ban's enactment.

What is China's main gun?

The Type 95 automatic rifle (Chinese: 95式自动步枪; pinyin: 95 Shì Zìdòng Bùqiāng) or QBZ-95 is a bullpup assault rifle designed and manufactured by Norinco, and issued since 1995 as the service rifle for the People's Liberation Army, People's Armed Police and various paramilitary law enforcement agencies in the People's ...

What powerful weapon was a Chinese invention?

Gunpowder is the first explosive to have been developed. Popularly listed as one of the "Four Great Inventions" of China, it was invented during the late Tang dynasty (9th century) while the earliest recorded chemical formula for gunpowder dates to the Song dynasty (11th century).

What is the oldest Chinese weapon?

Dagger Axe (ge) – 399–300 BC

The thick tang would have been slotted through a wooden haft and the whole weapon lashed into place. This dagger axe is one of our oldest Chinese weapons and resides in stores because it is too fragile to be put on permanent display.

How did gunpowder get from China to Europe?

Gunpowder had been known in Western Europe from the High Middle Ages, likely having been spread along the Silk Road and by Chinese engineers employed by the Mongols; they had penetrated into Eastern Europe in the 1270s CE — but serious development of the first guns did not begin until a short while after the emergence ...

How did the Chinese make potassium nitrate?

One important ingredient in many of the failed elixirs was saltpeter, also known as potassium nitrate. During the Tang Dynasty, around 850 A.D., an enterprising alchemist (whose name has been lost to history) mixed 75 parts saltpeter with 15 parts charcoal and 10 parts sulfur.

How is gunpowder made?

Gunpowder, also called black powder, is a simple mixture of saltpeter, sulfur, and charcoal. The trickiest part of making black powder is sourcing these three supplies. Once you find them, you mix them together and create an explosive black meal.

Did the Chinese use gunpowder as a weapon?

Gunpowder was a Chinese invention that revolutionized warfare. The Chinese used explosives on a wide scale beginning in the tenth and eleventh centuries. The cannons, flamethrowers, and grenades that they used in battle were quickly adopted by European forces for battles on land and at sea.

What was the first gun in history?

The first firearm was the fire lance, which appeared in China between the 10–12th centuries. It was depicted in a silk painting dated to the mid-10th but textual evidence of its use does not appear until 1132, describing the siege of De'an. It consisted of a bamboo tube of gunpowder tied to a spear or other polearm.

Did ancient Egyptians have gunpowder?

There was no ancient Egyptian, Greek, Indian, or Roman gunpowder. It was developed and refined in China and then spread west from there.

Is it illegal to make gunpowder in the US?

Individuals do not need a manufacturer's license if they manufacture black powder for their own personal, non-business use and the black powder produced is not a “commercial” product within the contemplation of the exemption and must be stored in compliance with the appropriate regulations.

What race made gunpowder?

Gunpowder: Origins in the East. “Gunpowder,” as it came to be known, is a mixture of saltpeter (potassium nitrate), sulfur, and charcoal. Together, these materials will burn rapidly and explode as a propellant. Chinese monks discovered the technology in the 9th century CE, during their quest for a life-extending elixir ...

Does gunpowder go bad?

When properly stored, an unopened container of smokeless powder has an indefinite shelf life, but once it is opened, the stabilizers it contains begin to slowly but surely weaken.

Who invented the first gun?

The first firearms can be traced back to 10th century China. The Chinese were the first to invent gunpowder, and historians typically credit the first guns as being weapons the Chinese called fire lances. The fire lance was a metal or bamboo tube attached to the end of a spear.


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