11 November 2015

Bai Zi Chong (百子銃)

Bai Zi Chong (百子銃, lit. 'Hundred bullet gun')

Ming Chinese Swivel Gun
Drawing of a Bai Zi Chong with reinforcing hoops, from 'Bing Lu (《兵錄》)'.
Ming Chinese Muzzle-loading swivel gun
Drawing of a Bai Zi Chong without reinforcing hoops, from 'Wu Bei Yao Lue (《武備要略》)'.
Bai Zi Chong, also known as Bai Zi Lian Zhu Pao (百子連珠砲, lit. 'Hundred bullet rapid fire cannon'), is the Chinese name for muzzle-loading swivel gun. It is similar to its breech-loading counterpart in most respect. Prized for its wide arc of fire and accuracy, Bai Zi Chong is used primarily as shipborne anti-personnel ordnance and siege defence.

Shou Shang Bai Zi Chong (手上百子銃, lit. 'Handheld hundred bullet gun')

Drawing of a small Bai Zi Chong (highlighted), from 'Wu Bei Zhi (《武備志》)'.
Shou Shang Bai Zi Chong is a particularly lightweight variant of Bai Zi Chong that only requires one gunner to use, and presumably can be fired handheld. Despite its name, it is usually mounted on war carts such as Qing Che (輕車) and Jia Huo Zhan Che (架火戰車).


  1. Had the idea that Baizi might have something to do with the cannon being shot with something akin to grape shot. This theory hold any water?

    1. Yes, it was loaded with scattershot. Most Ming cannons were scattershot in one way or another.


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