Sunday, September 6, 2009

Historical Oddities-Grenade Catapult

To prove that everything that is old becomes new again, here we see French Army, early in WWI, using a small catapult to attempt to lob grenades into the German trenches. How well this worked is unknown, but if the catapult was well-built, it could probably add 10-15 meters on a grenade throw, which is significant. Those grenades look like they are of a pretty good size as well. To me, the biggest advantage would be that you could send a grenade towards the enemy without exposing yourself to fire. I find it fascinating that a weapon that goes back 2500+ years was still being made use of in what was one of the first "modern" wars. Things like this show that whenever someone says something like "this weapon is obsolete, get rid of it" or "infantry battles will never take place again" or "dogfighting is a thing of the past" or any other nonsense, they should probably be put out to pasture, or into the bar, or someplace else out of the way, because inventiveness and initiative win wars as much as anything else.


  1. not to flame but the US Civil War is usually considered to be the first modern war. It had the first ships that used revolving turrets and a modern design, trench warfare, submarines, did not mostly use formation battle tactics, and total warfare (burning supplies, towns, etc.)

  2. I agree in part, but I think that the flamethrower, submarine that don't usually kill their crew,large scale use of the machine gun and the birth of combat aviation trump the Civil War's "accomplishments".