Indian Artillery

2009/07/24 at 2:46 pm | Posted in Indian Artillery | 1 Comment

Indian Artillery

Gunpowder artillery was introduced into India by the Mughals and was used in sieges as well as pitched battles.

There was an artillery train of about 53 large guns at Plassey (mainly 18, 24 and 32 pounders). Some on wheeled platforms  drawn by oxen and pushed by elephants.

Examples of Indian artillery pieces:

 An early 18th century 6 pounder on display at the Royal Armouries museum, Fareham.  It bears inscriptions that say it was cast for Sava’i Jai Singh, ruler of Jaipur, India 1693-1743. Captured at Bhurtpore in 1826.


Indian bronze gun, 24-pounder. The tiger (Panthera tigris) respected for its power and magnificance is the national animal of India. There are four tigers’ heads and two tigers’ stripes on this gun. It was probably cast during the late eighteenth century but never fired because the vent is undrilled. On display at the Royal Armouries, Fareham.



Bronze 2-pounder gun, Indian, 18th century. The elaborate decoration includes a monster’s head at the muzzle; guns were often compared to fierce real or imaginary beasts. At the breech is a simple sight for aiming the gun. Royal Armouries museum Fareham.  


Bronze mortar, Indian, Madras, c1800. Probably not a type used at Plassey but interesting anyway! Cast in the form of a sleeping tiger. Also at the Royal Armouries museum Fareham. 


This is one of an identical pair of guns at Powis Castle, Powys, Wales. Clive’s eldest son married into the family in 1874. There are no details about it but it is Indian. No idea of its size. May well have been brought to England by the Clives. There is a Clive museum in the castle but it’s rubbish!!! You can’t take photos and there are no postcards or  books about the collection whatsoever (which is not particularly extensive anyway). 


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