Cookies Policy
X

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

Cathayan Arrows and Meteors: The Origins of Chinese Rocketry

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
The full text of this article is not currently available.

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this article

+ Tax (if applicable)
Add to Favorites
You must be logged in to use this functionality

image of Journal of Chinese Military History

Abstract Although it is now generally accepted that the rocket was invented in China, there is little agreement about exactly when this occurred. Various conflicting claims have been made, usually on the basis of dubious evidence. This article examines these claims and rejects all of them. It also discounts the hypothesis that the rocket developed from a kind of firework called a “fire-rat.” Instead, it suggests that the rocket very probably developed from Chinese fire-arrows, which carried charges of incendiary gunpowder. These became rocket-assisted arrows, fired from bows or, very often, arbalests. They achieved great ranges, of the order of two miles. They were used by the Mongols during their conquests in the mid-thirteenth century and may have formed part of the weaponry of the Chinese Song dynasty at an earlier period. The earliest reference to what were very probably true rockets, launched by their own propulsion, dates from 1272. It occurs in an account of events that took place during the siege of Xiangyang by Mongol forces. These rockets were used for signaling. There is no evidence that self-launching rockets were utilized as weapons in the mid-thirteenth century. Rockets as weapons are unlikely to have been developed any earlier than the late 1200s.

Affiliations: 1: s.g.haw@wadh.oxon.org

10.1163/22127453-12341243
/content/journals/10.1163/22127453-12341243
dcterms_title,pub_keyword,dcterms_description,pub_author
6
3
Loading
Loading

Full text loading...

/content/journals/10.1163/22127453-12341243
Loading

Data & Media loading...

http://brill.metastore.ingenta.com/content/journals/10.1163/22127453-12341243
Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1163/22127453-12341243
2013-01-01
2016-12-09

Sign-in

Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Subscribe to ToC alert
  • Get permissions
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
     
    Journal of Chinese Military History — Recommend this title to your library
  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation