Thursday, 19 February 2009


With a long background of military service and a particular interest in military history, I became involved with the setting up of the Royal Artillery museum now sited in the Royal Arsenal, Woolwich. I chose the title "Pieces of History" to use for my consultancy work and I continue to take an interest in the particular subject of artillery.

For those not aware of the pun, I should explain that the word "Piece" has a particular meaning in the world of artillery: a "piece of artillery" is a gun and, although the term is not often used now, it was common practice to refer to guns as "pieces". Since my interest is in historical artillery, the title is now, I hope, clear.

I intend to write a series of short articles about the history of artillery, but I do not intend to write a "history", as such: it would be a major task and one I don't regard as appropriate in a blog! Instead I shall simply pick out odd items that have interested me and post them when the mood takes me. Among these will be the occasional explanation of artillery that seems to be worth putting into this form.

For example, I have often had to explain the importance of trajectories in the context of artillery. Any professional artilleryman has to understand how to shape trajectories, yet for most people, the concept of shaping trajectories sounds weird and somewhat unlikely. Well, perhaps I should tackle that one as my next blog: it could set the tone and allow you to decide whether this is a blog that you want to read!

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