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No Gunpowder?

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    Posted: 31 Mar 2010 at 20:15
what if gunpoweder was never invented?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Mar 2010 at 22:24
What if pigs flew? Not said in derision, but technology is not necessarily a determinant that shapes the outcome of things to be...the "invention" hardly determined the course of Chinese history, did it?

Edited by drgonzaga - 31 Mar 2010 at 22:31
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Seko- Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Mar 2010 at 22:28
If there were no gunpowder we wouldn't have topics like this... well, till pigs fly at least. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Mar 2010 at 22:33
Alright, Seko direct the "newbie" here: Alternative History
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote King John Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Mar 2010 at 22:34
The topic is moved to the Alternative History subforum.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Mar 2010 at 23:30
Gunpowder didn't change much.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SPQR Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2010 at 00:47
umm it changed quite a few things like destroying the effectiveness of cavalry and the effectiveness of fortifications making them next to irrelevant. Gunpowder is probably one of the greatest weapons innovations since I dunno Iron or bronze each for their respective eras in history.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2010 at 01:17
But would the lack of Gunpowder change history in any substantial manner?
Gunpowder didn't save the Chinese from the Mongols, nor did it give the Spanish any major advantage over their enemies in Iberia or America (in America Iron was far more important)
For that matter, a woomera out ranges and out "guns" a 18th century musket. Gunpowder I argue did not change the course of civilisation. It may have given an edge in the first encounter, but ultimately no civilisations were destroyed or invented solely because of possession of lack of it.


Edited by Omar al Hashim - 01 Apr 2010 at 01:18
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote theManwhocouldntcry Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2010 at 02:53
If I'm not mistaken, didn't the mongols capture chinese engineers, and used gunpowder weapons to repctable effect on many a chinese city wall?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2010 at 03:16
Are we going to have a restaging of The East is Red? It most certainly was a bit dramatic to receive an e-mail notification with the sender being History Soap Opera! Methinks the clackers in this audience are the hackers! Did anyone else receive such a Notification?

Edited by drgonzaga - 01 Apr 2010 at 03:17
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote theManwhocouldntcry Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2010 at 03:37
I did too!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2010 at 03:53
Hmm...a change in avatars! Quick Watson...don't dawdle the game's afoot!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 10:55
Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

But would the lack of Gunpowder change history in any substantial manner?
Gunpowder didn't save the Chinese from the Mongols, nor did it give the Spanish any major advantage over their enemies in Iberia or America (in America Iron was far more important)
For that matter, a woomera out ranges and out "guns" a 18th century musket. Gunpowder I argue did not change the course of civilisation. It may have given an edge in the first encounter, but ultimately no civilisations were destroyed or invented solely because of possession of lack of it.

Yes it would. Much of the European colonisations of other parts of the world would not have happened without the advantage fire arms, guns and gunpowder got them. Perhaps the transatlantic slave trade would not have occured, and the scramble for Africa would not have occured either. And in the long run much of the colonisations of America would not have taken place either.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 12:34

Europeans did not posess a technological superiority over the majority of people they conquored, and those that they did, technology did not give them the killer edge.

1) Indian military technology was equal or superior to European. One example is the use of massed Rockets, which the English copied from Mysore after the war. The star spangled banner was written under bombardment from Indian rockets.
2) African military technology was equal to Europes up until the invention of the Gatling Gun, which was industralisation rather than gunpowders fault. From 1815 - 1870 the biggest purchesor of arms from Europe was sub-saharan africa. The Gatling gun, while it certainly did assist the scramble, didn't start it. The scramble started maybe 20 years before Europeans got involved with massive Egyptian and Zanzibari expansion. The Belgians didn't conquer the Eastern Congo from the Congolese, they took it from a Zanizibari vassal (Tipu Tip). In west africa the Europeans started the scramble without the Gatling Gun, and the conquest of the Boers is just as much a part of the scramble as the conquest of black African tribes.
3) In Australia there was an obvious technological superiority but this did not help them in war until repeating pistols in the middle-late 19th century. Woomera spear throwers had a larger range, better accuracy, and higher rate of fire than muskets. Every aboriginal man was trained to fight, unlike the Europeans. Sheep and Cattle were actually the strongest weapon in the English arsenal. Native Police the second.
4) The middle east was only captured in WW1, and it should be obvious the Euros had no gunpowder superiority over the Ottoman Turks.
5) When the Spanish and Portugese landed in America they hardly possessed guns themselves. If there was any major technological contribution to this conquest then it was Iron, not gunpowder. The portugese in the east had serious problems holding on to land conquests. The African/Persian/Indian/Malay states were all far too strong for the sea-bound Portugese. Their advantage came from doing something no-one else had thought of - mounting cannons on ships - and extreme brutality that no-one was prepared for.
6) Most of East Asia was never colonised by the Europeans.


The European advantage came from organisation, determination, self-confidence, and brutality - both to themselves and their enemies.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 13:44
Mumbledypegs, Watson! The purported logic here can only buttress the theory that the tail does wag the horse!
 
It has been written:
Yes it would. Much of the European colonisations of other parts of the world would not have happened without the advantage fire arms, guns and gunpowder got them. Perhaps the transatlantic slave trade would not have occured, and the scramble for Africa would not have occured either. And in the long run much of the colonisations of America would not have taken place either.
 
One would really have to "scramble" the factual history eggs to make the above verbal omelet edible!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 13:58
Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

Europeans did not posess a technological superiority over the majority of people they conquored, and those that they did, technology did not give them the killer edge.

1) Indian military technology was equal or superior to European. One example is the use of massed Rockets, which the English copied from Mysore after the war. The star spangled banner was written under bombardment from Indian rockets.

Still Europeans was superior in the modernity of the firearms. They also had more and modern artillery.

Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

African military technology was equal to Europes up until the invention of the Gatling Gun, which was industralisation rather than gunpowders fault. From 1815 - 1870 the biggest purchesor of arms from Europe was sub-saharan africa. The Gatling gun, while it certainly did assist the scramble, didn't start it. The scramble started maybe 20 years before Europeans got involved with massive Egyptian and Zanzibari expansion. The Belgians didn't conquer the Eastern Congo from the Congolese, they took it from a Zanizibari vassal (Tipu Tip). In west africa the Europeans started the scramble without the Gatling Gun, and the conquest of the Boers is just as much a part of the scramble as the conquest of black African tribes.
 
Even before that, Europeans had an edge in the modernity of the guns. And above all they had artillery which their opponents seldom had, at least not not as modern.
 
Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

In Australia there was an obvious technological superiority but this did not help them in war until repeating pistols in the middle-late 19th century. Woomera spear throwers had a larger range, better accuracy, and higher rate of fire than muskets. Every aboriginal man was trained to fight, unlike the Europeans. Sheep and Cattle were actually the strongest weapon in the English arsenal. Native Police the second.
 
Already in the first half of 19 th century settlers with the help of firearms were able to severly decimate the aboriginal people of Tazmania. And gradually they were able to subjugate also the aboriginals on the mainland. This had taken much longer time without firearms.

Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

When the Spanish and Portugese landed in America they hardly possessed guns themselves. If there was any major technological contribution to this conquest then it was Iron, not gunpowder. The portugese in the east had serious problems holding on to land conquests. The African/Persian/Indian/Malay states were all far too strong for the sea-bound Portugese. Their advantage came from doing something no-one else had thought of - mounting cannons on ships - and extreme brutality that no-one was prepared for.
 
Iron and horses were ofcourse also of significant importance in the Americas but the thing that gave the Europeans the edge were firearms. If they had only had iron and horses they would perhaps been able to conquer some of the big civilizations as the Aztecs or the Incas. But in lesser populated areas against more decentralized peoples and also in more difficult terrain (as in jungles and forests) they would have much more difficulties to expand without firearms. Also when some native groups (like Mapuches in South America or Plain Indians in North America) got hold of horses the Europeans would probably never conquered them without firearms.

Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

The European advantage came from organisation, determination, self-confidence, and brutality - both to themselves and their enemies.
 
But still without firearms they would not have succeeded. It would have become another sort of warfare where the Europeans would not have had the same (or in many case no) edge.
Europeans would probably never had made any greater conquests outside Europe without fire arms technology.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 14:01
Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

Mumbledypegs, Watson! The purported logic here can only buttress the theory that the tail does wag the horse!
 
It has been written:
Yes it would. Much of the European colonisations of other parts of the world would not have happened without the advantage fire arms, guns and gunpowder got them. Perhaps the transatlantic slave trade would not have occured, and the scramble for Africa would not have occured either. And in the long run much of the colonisations of America would not have taken place either.
 
One would really have to "scramble" the factual history eggs to make the above verbal omelet edible!
 
You can believe what you want, without gun powder or firearms technology Europeans would not have been able to conquer the rest of the world. Maybe Europe would have been qonquered instead.


Edited by Carcharodon - 09 Jul 2010 at 14:02
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 14:26
Balderdash! These ridiculous assertions have no factual basis in history! In the Americas, the Spanish and the Portuguese of the 16th century were not dragging artillery in to the interior and the supposition that it was gunpowder that proved the mainstay of the bandeirantes in the Amazonian rainforest during the 17th century can only be posited by someone entirely ignorant of the Portuguese experience in Brazil.
 
Just to underscore the fallacy: Firearms technology was developed and refined in the German principalities hence under your premise it would follow that they would have run roughshod over all of their neighbors. They didn't in fact the results were otherwise, it was their neighbors that made mince meat from their development. And if you know your history of Sao Jorge da Mina and its parapets bristling with guns, such did not mean the Portuguese ran untrammeled over the people of the interior of the "Gold Coast". It is not an instance of my believing "what I want" [that department, after all, is Carcharadon Central] but entirely rests with the relevant historical facts.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 14:49
Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

The European advantage came from organisation, determination, self-confidence, and brutality - both to themselves and their enemies.

The Europeans had a technological advantage agoinst most of its enemies, and gunpowder and guns was an important ingrediant in that advantage, but they were not the only ingrediants. They were not always better organized though (even if they were in some cases). For example a handful of Spniards was hardly more organized than the Inca or Aztec empires.

About the talk of determination, it is just mythology, many of Europes enemies were more determined but did not always have the technological or industrial edge to win. Just look at the Zulu war where the Zulus many time were more determined but did not have the resources. Or many of the battles in North Eastern Americas where technology and material resources won the victory over an Amerindians that many times were more determined (just take a look at such events as Monongahela 1755 or Wabash 1791).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 14:58
Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

 Balderdash! These ridiculous assertions have no factual basis in history! In the Americas, the Spanish and the Portuguese of the 16th century were not dragging artillery in to the interior and the supposition that it was gunpowder that proved the mainstay of the bandeirantes in the Amazonian rainforest during the 17th century can only be posited by someone entirely ignorant of the Portuguese experience in Brazil.  

Actually without guns and other technological superiority both Spanish and Portuguese had not reached much further. 



And the Mapuches in Chile or the plain indians in North America would probably still going on fighting today if it had not been for firearms.
 
 
Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

 Just to underscore the fallacy: Firearms technology was developed and refined in the German principalities hence under your premise it would follow that they would have run roughshod over all of their neighbors. They didn't in fact the results were otherwise, it was their neighbors that made mince meat from their development. And if you know your history of Sao Jorge da Mina and its parapets bristling with guns, such did not mean the Portuguese ran untrammeled over the people of the interior of the "Gold Coast". It is not an instance of my believing "what I want" [that department, after all, is Carcharadon Central] but entirely rests with the relevant historical facts.

If you underestimate the power of guns and other technological improvements in the European expansion you have actually not really understood history, even if you call yourself a doctor.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 19:13
And what do you call yourself, Carch, an idiot savant! That's tit-for-tat with respect to your parting shot above! Cortez did not "conquer" the Azetcs because he had guns, but because he had the support of other Amerind groups, and much the same may be said of the Pizarros in Peru. Far more complicated factors were at work but , instead, you choose to redress the old cultural superiority argument in new apparel [Eureka, guns and gunpowder]. Hernando de Soto did not "conquer" squat as he traversed the American Southeast in the 1540s and he had even been a companion to Pizarro in Peru!
 
A bit of advice with regard to your habit of combing the "Internet" so as to raid romanticized images--the typical bandeirante "conquered" nothing. In essence, for most of their history they were simply "slave raiders" operating outside the bounds of colonial laws in many instances. Heck the dominant language of the Paulista bandeirante was lingua geral, and their contact with things European highly limited. Should I utter the word mestico?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 19:25
Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

 And what do you call yourself, Carch, an idiot savant! That's tit-for-tat with respect to your parting shot above! Cortez did not "conquer" the Azetcs because he had guns, but because he had the support of other Amerind groups, and much the same may be said of the Pizarros in Peru. Far more complicated factors were at work but , instead, you choose to redress the old cultural superiority argument in new apparel [Eureka, guns and gunpowder]. Hernando de Soto did not "conquer" squat as he traversed the American Southeast in the 1540s and he had even been a companion to Pizarro in Peru!

Still technological advantage (including guns) put the Spaniards in such position that other groups at all came upon the idea to support them.
 
Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

 
A bit of advice with regard to your habit of combing the "Internet" so as to raid romanticized images--the typical bandeirante "conquered" nothing. In essence, for most of their history they were simply "slave raiders" operating outside the bounds of colonial laws in many instances. Heck the dominant language of the Paulista bandeirante was lingua geral, and their contact with things European highly limited. Should I utter the word mestico?

Yes I know they were no conquerors but bandits and slave raiders. Still they were some kind of spearheads in the opening up of the interior of Brazil. And also they brought about immense suffering among the peoples they raided. Their impact was actually gruesome. Hopefully Brazilians do not anymore see them as some kind of heroes.


Edited by Carcharodon - 09 Jul 2010 at 19:32
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 19:27
Still we have the interesting question how war, conquest and development of history had been without gunpowder or firearms.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 19:38
Originally posted by Carcharodon Carcharodon wrote:

Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

 And what do you call yourself, Carch, an idiot savant! That's tit-for-tat with respect to your parting shot above! Cortez did not "conquer" the Azetcs because he had guns, but because he had the support of other Amerind groups, and much the same may be said of the Pizarros in Peru. Far more complicated factors were at work but , instead, you choose to redress the old cultural superiority argument in new apparel [Eureka, guns and gunpowder]. Hernando de Soto did not "conquer" squat as he traversed the American Southeast in the 1540s and he had even been a companion to Pizarro in Peru!

Still technological advantage (including guns) put the Spaniards in such position that other groups at all came upon the idea to support them.
 
 
It doesn't matter, the Mahdists killed Gordon with spears and the Zulus did about the same thing and the Brits back then were alone and won the war.
 
Aztecs were hated by everybody and it was natural that everybody will join the white guy with wool in their faces who won every skirmish with them.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 20:22
As concerning the brits they won their wars with guns. At Omdurman hardly any of the Madhists came closer to the brits than 300 meters.
When concerning the Aztecs and the Spaniards, technology was also an important part of the Spanish vicory and the surviving Aztec accounts also take up that aspect several times.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jul 2010 at 23:06
Miguel Leon-Portilla is that you!?! Placing aside the pastiche that is his tome, The Broken Spears, there is no Aztec narrative of the conquest as a narrative should be properly understood. And even Leon-Portilla is honest enough to write:

The texts have been arranged to give a chronological narrative of the Conquest, and they contain a number of obvious discrepancies and contradictions. We have not attempted to solve all of the problems which these discrepancies pose for the historian. Our fundamental concern is with the human interest of the accounts, which reveal how the Nahuas interpreted the downfall of their civilization. This first chapter begins with a passage from the Codex Florentino; the original text is in the Nahuatl of Sahagun's native informants. It is followed by two selections from the Historia de Tlaxcala by Diego Munoz Camargo, who married into the nobility of Tlaxcala. The Tlaxcaltecas allied themselves with Cortes, and Munoz Camargo wrote from their point of view, but his description of the omens which appeared in Mexico agrees quite closely with that of Sahagun's informants.

see: http://ambergriscaye.com/pages/mayan/aztec.html
 
But even the interpretative flow you have chosen about "guns and powder" is nowhere in sight. Find any guns here--
They ran in among the dancers, forcing their way to the place where the drums were played. They attacked the man who was drumming and cut off his arms. Then they cut off his head, and it rolled across the floor.

They attacked all the celebrants, stabbing them, spearing them, striking them with their swords. They attacked some of them from behind, and these fell instantly to the ground with their entrails hanging out. Others they beheaded: they cut off their heads, or split their heads to pieces.

They struck others in the shoulders, and their arms were torn from their bodies. They wounded some in the thigh and some in the calf. They slashed others in the abdomen, and their entrails all spilled to the ground. Some attempted to run away, but their intestines dragged as they ran; they seemed to tangle their feet in their own entrails. No matter how they tried to save themselves, they could find no escape.

Guess not...lest ye be guessed back! And in the most uncomfortable manner to one of your prejudices. Seems it was those nasty friars and monks against whom you regularly fling vitrol that preserved the Aztec perspective. Perhaps you would do well to read about the foibles of the Aztec mind-set itself. And you had better do so quickly as we are fast approaching the close of time...2012 you know. 


Edited by drgonzaga - 09 Jul 2010 at 23:08
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Jul 2010 at 01:34
Originally posted by Carcharodon Carcharodon wrote:

Still Europeans was superior in the modernity of the firearms. They also had more and modern artillery.

No they didn't. In the east India Companies war with the Maharathas the Copmnay was severely outgunned by the Maharatha's artillery. Both in number and fire power. IIRC The Company won at least two key battles because they managed to disable the Maharatha's artillery early on.
As I already said, Mysore's rockets dumb struck the English who were completely unprepared for such weapons. Everyone in India had modern artillery.
Quote Even before that, Europeans had an edge in the modernity of the guns. And above all they had artillery which their opponents seldom had, at least not not as modern.

No they didn't. Take the gunpowder Empire of Bornu in the 16th-17th century. Their gunpowder technology and tactics were best to match the Ottomans in Sudan, which was a damn sight better than the Europeans could do in the same time period. Note, that the territory of Bornu was not conquered until well after the Empire had disintergrated. Parts of Bornu, like Darfur, weren't conqured until 1916 in WW1.
Originally posted by Carch Carch wrote:

Already in the first half of 19 th century settlers with the help of firearms were able to severly decimate the aboriginal people of Tazmania. And gradually they were able to subjugate also the aboriginals on the mainland. This had taken much longer time without firearms.

I already told you the Europeans didn't out gun them. Convicts with Muskets were markedly inferior to trained aboriginal spear throwers, and no artillery has ever been deployed in anger on Australia. Fences, land clearing, hard footed sheep and cattle destroyed Aboriginal food sources. Disease and alcoholism took a serious toll, and the vast and endless numbers of white men were the reasons the English triumphed before 1850. Not gunpowder. I challenge you to load a musket with 6ft musclar man who gets his food from spearing roos aiming at you.
Quote Iron and horses were ofcourse also of significant importance in the Americas but the thing that gave the Europeans the edge were firearms. If they had only had iron and horses they would perhaps been able to conquer some of the big civilizations as the Aztecs or the Incas. But in lesser populated areas against more decentralized peoples and also in more difficult terrain (as in jungles and forests) they would have much more difficulties to expand without firearms.

Last I checked they only conqured the large empires. It also took hundreds of years for the English/Americans to move inland, despite their guns and the native's lack of them. The iroquoi played decisive roles in all the 18th century wars between europeans.
Quote You can believe what you want, without gun powder or firearms technology Europeans would not have been able to conquer the rest of the world. Maybe Europe would have been qonquered instead.

Europe was conquered. Where do you think the Euro's got their guns from? Ottoman expansion in Europe!
Quote At Omdurman hardly any of the Madhists came closer to the brits than 300 meters.

The Mahdists were ill equipped revolutionaries. And 2/3rds of the "British" force was Egyptian. British guns did them well and good in Afghanistan during the same time period.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Jul 2010 at 09:14

Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

No they didn't. In the east India Companies war with the Maharathas the Copmnay was severely outgunned by the Maharatha's artillery. Both in number and fire power. IIRC The Company won at least two key battles because they managed to disable the Maharatha's artillery early on.
As I already said, Mysore's rockets dumb struck the English who were completely unprepared for such weapons.
Everyone in India had modern artillery.

 

That were to be changed. Soon enough the British could exceed the indians in technology and outgun them. That the Indians had rockets is not surprising since its proximity to China, where rockets  once had been invented.

One shall not forget that soon the British also used rockets, as the siege of Copenhagen in 1807 proves.

Originally posted by Omar al
Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

No they didn't. Take the gunpowder Empire of Bornu in the 16th-17th century. Their gunpowder technology and tactics were best to match the Ottomans in Sudan, which was a damn sight better than the Europeans could do in the same time period. Note, that the territory of Bornu was not conquered until well after the Empire had disintergrated. Parts of Bornu, like Darfur, weren't conqured until 1916 in WW1.

 

Well, not many Europeans even sat their foot in those neighbourhoods before 18th and 19th centuries. But that Bornu should have had better weapons technology in the 17th century then Europe can be discussed. They had not the the industrial capacity to exceed the Europeans. Also England had already at that time had cannons and firearms since the 14th or probably even the 13th century. Even a small country like Sweden had cannons since the 14th century (actually one of the worlds oldest preserved cannons is Swedish [or rather Danish since the place it was found once belonged to Denmark], the only one that is older is a Chinese one).

Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

I already told you the Europeans didn't out gun them. Convicts with Muskets were markedly inferior to trained aboriginal spear throwers, and no artillery has ever been deployed in anger on Australia. Fences, land clearing, hard footed sheep and cattle destroyed Aboriginal food sources. Disease and alcoholism took a serious toll, and the vast and endless numbers of white men were the reasons the English triumphed before 1850. Not gunpowder. I challenge you to load a musket with 6ft musclar man who gets his food from spearing roos aiming at you.

 

But actually many of the aboriginals in the black war in Tasmanaia were shot with firearms. So ofcourse they were outgunned. It took its time but in closer fight the guns took its toll.

Also at the mainland guns proved decisive, even if they were just one of the factors that defeated the aboriginals. Note also that in other places in the world guns could even be decisive against people armed with bows and arrows which were more effective than spears and spear throwers. Musquets can actually be effective at close range used in the right way. 

Originally posted by Omar al
Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

and no artillery has ever been deployed in anger on Australia.

 

Actually already in 1804 a carronade was used against Tasmanian aboriginals, even if it maybe were not deployed in anger (how you define that) but more as a deterrant. 

Originally posted by Omar al
Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

Last I checked they only conqured the large empires. It also took hundreds of years for the English/Americans to move inland, despite their guns and the native's lack of them. The iroquoi played decisive roles in all the 18th century wars between europeans.

 

Europeans also conquered smaller groups, not only the Aztecs and Incas. Already earlier they had taken Carribean islands. They also overtook smaller Andean nations as the ones in Colombia. 

Without gun technology America would probably never have been conquered. As you say even with the technological edge  it took a long time for the English/Americans to move inland. But without guns and gunpowder they would may not have pulled it of.

Imagine English/Americans trying to conquer the West equipped only with spears, bows, crossbows and swords. Especially if they had met plain indians that rode horses.

Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

Europe was conquered. Where do you think the Euro's got their guns from? Ottoman expansion in Europe!

 

The Ottomans just took some parts of Europe, never the whole of it. The western European countries were not conquered.

 

Originally posted by Omar al
Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

The Mahdists were ill equipped revolutionaries. And 2/3rds of the "British" force was Egyptian. British guns did them well and good in Afghanistan during the same time period.

 

Yes, in many cases guns would prove decisive. Also in the Zulu wars.



Edited by Carcharodon - 10 Jul 2010 at 09:27
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Jul 2010 at 10:24
Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

  Miguel Leon-Portilla is that you!?! Placing aside the pastiche that is his tome, The Broken Spears, there is no Aztec narrative of the conquest as a narrative should be properly understood. And even Leon-Portilla is honest enough to write:
 ------
But even the interpretative flow you have chosen about "guns and powder" is nowhere in sight. Find any guns here--
They ran in among the dancers, forcing their way to the place where the drums were played. They attacked the man who was drumming and cut off his arms. Then they cut off his head, and it rolled across the floor.

They attacked all the celebrants, stabbing them, spearing them, striking them with their swords. They attacked some of them from behind, and these fell instantly to the ground with their entrails hanging out. Others they beheaded: they cut off their heads, or split their heads to pieces.

They struck others in the shoulders, and their arms were torn from their bodies. They wounded some in the thigh and some in the calf. They slashed others in the abdomen, and their entrails all spilled to the ground. Some attempted to run away, but their intestines dragged as they ran; they seemed to tangle their feet in their own entrails. No matter how they tried to save themselves, they could find no escape.

Guess not...lest ye be guessed back! And in the most uncomfortable manner to one of your prejudices.

It seems that firearms is mentioned:

Indeed, this relatively straightforward view of Spanish accomplishments is pervasive in Nahua accounts of the war. European technology is mentioned frequently—not as something mystifying in the hands of gods but as the clear and concrete explanation for indigenous military losses. As early as the Annals of Tlatelolco, writers mentioned at the key point in their narration that "the war leaders were dying from the guns and iron bolts." As late as the end of the century, Ixtlilxochitl mentions that a local king decides to heed his sister and not try to stop Cortes: she warned of "a young man with a light in one hand that would exceed that of the sun, and in the other an espada, which was the weapon that this newly arrived nation used."

Iron weapons and armours are also mentioned:

The initial report Moctezuma is given is presented in three sections. First come the Spaniards' weapons. "Their war gear was all iron. They clothed their bodies in iron, they put iron on their heads, their swords were iron, their bows were iron, and their shields and lances were iron [ Florentine Codex]".

Their iron lances and halberds seem to sparkle, and their iron swords were curved like a stream of water. Their cuirasses and iron helmets seemed to make a clattering sound. [Florentine Codex.]"

Also Cortez talks about guns:

 I called all my men out on parade and reckoned eighty-six horsemen, 118 crossbowmen and harque-busiers, some 700 foot soldiers with swords and bucklers, three large iron guns, fifteen small bronze field guns and ten hundredweight of powder,..

The Aztecs even got hold of some gun but were not able to use it: 

When they captured a cannon, they recognized they had neither the expertise nor the ammunition to make it useful to themselves. The best they could do was make it impossible for the Spanish ever to regain it: they wisely sank it in the lake.

The citations is from Burying the White Gods: New Perspectives on the Conquest of Mexico, by CAMILLA TOWNSEND in The American Historical Review, Vol 108, No 3, 2003.

Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

Seems it was those nasty friars and monks against whom you regularly fling vitrol that preserved the Aztec perspective. Perhaps you would do well to read about the foibles of the Aztec mind-set itself. And you had better do so quickly as we are fast approaching the close of time...2012 you know. 

Well, the least those Monks and friars could do was to preserve some narratives, as a very small compensation for participating in destroying a whole culture.




Edited by Carcharodon - 10 Jul 2010 at 10:53
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jul 2010 at 00:36

Carch when faced with significant evidence of the contray why do you hold onto your beliefs even tighter?

Originally posted by Carch Carch wrote:

That were to be changed. Soon enough the British could exceed the indians in technology and outgun them. That the Indians had rockets is not surprising since its proximity to China, where rockets  once had been invented.
One shall not forget that soon the British also used rockets, as the siege of Copenhagen in 1807 proves.

Really? At exactly what point? Seriously, at which date did England exceed India in technology?
In fact, after 1850 how do you even separate England and India? They are the same country. I could say that in 1900 Calcutta University was leading its field in physics, but the university and its students were obviously British subjects.

And I already told you the British used rockets in the Napoleonic Wars. They learnt the tech fighting against Mysore a few decades earlier.

Quote
Well, not many Europeans even sat their foot in those neighbourhoods before 18th and 19th centuries.
Yeah. Think about that. It wasn't for lack of trying.
Quote But that Bornu should have had better weapons technology in the 17th century then Europe can be discussed. They had not the the industrial capacity to exceed the Europeans.

Prove it.
I don't think you'd heard of Bornu before I mentioned it. I certainly don't know of any source that you can make that claim from.
Quote Also England had already at that time had cannons and firearms since the 14th or probably even the 13th century. Even a small country like Sweden had cannons since the 14th century (actually one of the worlds oldest preserved cannons is Swedish [or rather Danish since the place it was found once belonged to Denmark], the only one that is older is a Chinese one)

So? Europe was poor and irrelevant in the 14th century. If they learnt something from the Mongols and Turks good on them.
Quote But actually many of the aboriginals in the black war in Tasmanaia were shot with firearms. So ofcourse they were outgunned. It took its time but in closer fight the guns took its toll.

So? Many of the whites were killed with spears. Its an irrelevat point. Of course the English were using guns and the Pallwah spears.
The Black War was the most successful Aboriginal resistance in all of Australia. It lasted 4 times longer than other movements.

Same point regarding your post to Dr G. You merely showed the Spanish had guns. You didn't show that if they didn't have guns they would've lost.

Quote Also at the mainland guns proved decisive, even if they were just one of the factors that defeated the aboriginals. Note also that in other places in the world guns could even be decisive against people armed with bows and arrows which were more effective than spears and spear throwers. Musquets can actually be effective at close range used in the right way.

You don't know what you're talking about. In my district the Walgalu, Ngunawal, and Ngarigo fought no battles with Europeans yet the vast majority were all dead within 60 years. The only wars fought with Europeans involved around here was when the Wiradjuri invaded the Tumut district and the white settlers took sides in the fight between Walgalu and Wiradjuri.
Quote Without gun technology America would probably never have been conquered. As you say even with the technological edge  it took a long time for the English/Americans to move inland. But without guns and gunpowder they would may not have pulled it of.

Prove it don't claim it.
Quote Imagine English/Americans trying to conquer the West equipped only with spears, bows, crossbows and swords. Especially if they had met plain indians that rode horses.

Last I checked 300 years of guns didn't conquer the west. Industrialisation is not gunpowder. Events post 1850 are beyond the scope of thread.
Quote
The Ottomans just took some parts of Europe, never the whole of it. The western European countries were not conquered.

Mores the pity.

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