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War in England 1642-1649$
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Barbara Donagan

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199285181

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199285181.001.0001

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The Means of Violence

The Means of Violence

(p.74) 5 The Means of Violence
War in England 1642-1649

Barbara Donagan

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses weapons used in the English civil war. Civil war armies used a transitional mixture of firearms and ‘muscle-powered weapons’ ranging from heavy artillery to clubs. Even the bow and arrow marginally survived this time, although these seem to have been most useful as a means of sending propaganda messages in and out of besieged strongholds. Officers carried pistols and swords, as did the cavalry, and royalist cavalry sometimes added a small pole-axe; dragoons — mounted foot soldiers on inferior horses — usually carried firelock muskets or carbines as well as swords; and foot regiments were composed of musketeers (normally with less advanced matchlock muskets) and pikemen, both of whom also carried swords. Homely weapons played a larger part early in the war than they did after it had settled down and supplies and logistics had improved.

Keywords:   English civil war, weapons, firearms, artillery, bow and arrow, pole-axe, dragoons, musketeers, pikemen

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