The Chinese & Gunpowder

Chinese alchemists discovered gunpowder in the 8th century while they were carrying out experiments to find the elixir of life. By the 10th century, gunpowder was being used to make fireworks and weapons. The Chinese invented the gun, the rocket, the bomb, and the mine. The Song army used guns against the invading Mongols in… Read More

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When was the Rocket Born?

“The first rockets were Chinese. In the 1230s the armies of the Song dynasty, who were fighting Mongol invaders, started launching “fire arrows” propelled by gunpowder some 300 metres into enemy lines. When the Song’s artillerymen realised that these arrows continued to fly straight even after their fiery exhaust had burned away their feathers, they removed the fletching and the… Read More