A LIVING HISTORY BLOG.

18TH CENTURY LIVING HISTORY IN AUSTRALIA.

Sunday, 9 June 2013

Gulliver's Travels & The Gunpowder Bag.

Gunpowder bags were used in the 18th century for carrying extra gunpowder, but these bags were usually contained in another pack, such as a knapsack. But in the 17th century it seems these gunpowder bags were carried instead of a powder horn. Have you ever read Gulliver's Travels? In that book a powder bag is mentioned, & that was the first time I had ever heard of such a powder bag, and the last time, until now. Here is a 17th century still life painting showing such a gunpowder bag.
... Oeil Still Life with a Bird Cage, Birdcalls, and a Powder-Bag By JOHANNES LEEMANS 
(The Hague c. 1633 – The Hague 1688)

I would say that this painting shows a leather waist belt attached to the powder bag proving that this bag at least was worn at the waist and not over the shoulder. The strap may be the same, but as you can see this strap is not buckled, leading me to think that it was not simply slung over the shoulder across the chest.



3 comments:

Gorges Smythe said...

I think thee Scottish bird hunters had a double pouch with measures on the bottom, one for powder and one for shot.

Gorges Smythe said...

Make that an IRISH shot and powder pouch. Here's a photo:

https://www.google.com/search?q=irish+shot+pouch&rlz=1C2ECBA_enUS466US466&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=EmS1UebqFYaHywGi1YGYAg&ved=0CC4QsAQ&biw=1920&bih=983#rlz=1C2ECBA_enUS466US466&tbm=isch&sa=1&q=irish+shot+and+powder+pouches&oq=irish+shot+and+powder+pouches&gs_l=img.12...16527.20852.5.24593.7.7.0.0.0.0.78.391.7.7.0...0.0.0..1c.1.16.img.dbRLdEIIf-Y&bav=on.2,or.r_qf.&bvm=bv.47534661,d.aWc&fp=db69c38de4dd3978&biw=1920&bih=983&facrc=_&imgrc=5fK-pXyBebJfZM%3A%3BLml9LSgHoszYjM%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fi881.photobucket.com%252Falbums%252Fac20%252FSpence_2010%252Foccasional%252FchargerB.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.muzzleloadingforum.com%252Ffusionbb%252Fshowtopic.php%253Ftid%252F254543%252Fpid%252F954394%252F%3B1008%3B670

Le Loup said...

Yes I have seen those before, I wonder what period they are.
Keith.