18th Century Podcast Episode 16 Archduchess Maria Theresa

Archduchess Maria Theresa

Listen here: https://anchor.fm/cj123/episodes/18th-Century-Podcast-Episode-16-Archduchess-Maria-Theresa-e5ffcq/a-ao7vas

Summary

In this episode, we will be taking a look at the life of Archduchess Maria Theresa. She was involved in one of the key conflicts of the 18th Century, The War Of Austrian Succession.

Script

INTRO

Welcome back to the 18th Century Podcast. I am your host, Cj. In today’s episode, we will be taking a look at the life of Archduchess Maria Theresa. She was involved in one of the key conflicts of the 18th Century, The War Of Austrian Succession. If you’d like to read the script for this episode and its citations, go to 18thcentury.home.blog that’s 1, 8, t h, century dot home dot blog. Type the numbers don’t spell them. Let’s begin this episode by taking a look at her early life before she gained the crown.

PART 1 EARLY LIFE

Archduchess Maria Theresa young

Archduchess Maria Theresa was born on May 13th, 1717, in Vienna. She was the eldest daughter of the Holy Roman Emperor, Charles VI of the Habsburg dynasty and Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel. I have to provide a little context a few years before her birth. Under the law of the time, only male heirs could assume the throne. Charles was concerned he wouldn’t have a male heir. So in 1713, he issued the Pragmatic Sanction, which would allow his eldest daughter to assume the throne if he could not provide a male heir. He would produce a male heir but tragically the heir would die an infant in 1716. When the Pragmatic Sanction was issued most of the Monarchs under Charles accepted it. Maria’s education was typical for that of a noblewoman during the time. However, she was not taught about the matters of Statecraft. In 1736 Maria would marry. The circumstances around her marriage are a bit unusual for the time. Charles VI advisor, Prince Eugene of Savoy, recommended that he should have his daughter married off to someone who held great power. This would be the conventional wisdom of the time. Instead, Charles chose to let his daughter marry someone she loved. Maria had fallen for a French Duke, by the name of Francis Stephen of Lorraine. They would marry in 1736. For the French, this was a problem. If one of their Dukes married into the Hapsburg line, the Hapsburg would have a claim over French territory. To appease the French Monarchy, Duke Francis traded his territory for the province of Tuscany. At this time, Tuscany was considered to be of lesser value. What is truly remarkable is how many children the new royal couple would produce throughout their lives. Maria would give birth to sixteen children, ten of them would survive to adulthood. They had 5 sons and 11 daughters, and one of those daughters was, Marie Antoinette. Then in 1740, Charles VI would die, and the crown would pass to Maria. The War Of Austrian Succession was about to begin.

PART 2 TAKING THE CROWN & THE WAR OF AUSTRIAN SUCCESSION 

Archduchess Maria Theresa and The War Of Austrian Succession

On October 20th, 1740, Charles VI died. At the age of 23, Maria Theresa would ascend the throne, becoming the Empress of the Holy Roman Empire, and Archduchess of Austria. What she inherited was a terrible situation. She had no training in running the government, the treasury was practically empty, their army was weak, and the Capitol was seated with unrest. But to her benefit, the duchies of Austria, Bohemia, Netherlands, and Hungary accepted her as their Empress. One of the first major challenges Maria faced was when Frederick the Great invaded Silesia by December. Then the French and Bavarians invaded her to the West. Her main focus for most of the war would be on the Prussians as they were the greater threat, but she could not ignore being invaded from 2 fronts. France, Bavaria, Saxony, and Spain supported a challenger to Maria’s Thorne, Charles Albert, Elector of Bavaria. Frederick the Great overtook Silesia in April of 1741. Maria’s main supporter in the war was the British. Though she had initial failures, there were some successes to come, even though Frederick would hold onto Silesia. During July of 1742, She drove off the French and Bavarians from Bohemia. She went right into the Bavarian territory. Her allies would defeat the French in 1743 at the Battle of Dettingen, in Bavaria. In September of the same year, Savoy would join Maria’s side along with the British, Hanoverians, and Hessians. The French would withdraw to their borders. Fortune would go more in Maria’s favor in January of 1745, when her Bavarian challenger, Charles Albert died. Albert’s son had little interest in continuing the conflict. He would give his support to Maria’s husband if Bavarian lands were returned. This would be made official in December, the Treaty of Dresden was signed. The Imperial Crown would pass to her husband, as the law prevented women from taking it. Though this wouldn’t be the complete end of the war. Fighting between her other foes continued until 1748. In October of 1748, the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle was signed. This treaty granted Prussia the right to keep Silesia. It had Maria cede three territories to the second son of the King of Spain but in exchange for her Netherlands territory which was begin held by France. It wasn’t the best situation for Maria by the end of the war, and it didn’t help that she never got a General up to the job. It wasn’t her proudest moment, but the War was over. Now, we’re going to take a short break, and when we come back, we’ll take a look at Maria’s domestic policy, and her later life. We’ll be right back.

PART 3 DOMESTIC POLICY AND LATER LIFE

Archduchess Maria Theresa old

Welcome back. Maria’s domestic policy was good and bad in some respects. Because of the War, she would increase her army’s size by about 200% and she also increased taxes. She combined the Austrian and Bohemian chancelleries. Maria would also go on to create a Supreme Court to uphold justice within her territory. Maria was also a devote Catholic, and she had a distasteful view of Protestants. In 1741 she kicked Jews out of Prague. She was very conservative in her religious views. Two academies would be established under her rule. The first being the Theresian Military Academy in 1752, and in 1754 she established an academy for engineering and science. She would also increase funding to the University of Vienna for medical research. She spent years fortifying her army and was preparing an attack on Prussia in 1756. What she didn’t expect was for Prussia to attack first. Frederick the Great would invade Saxony and this first move began the Seven Years War. The war would conclude in 1763 when Maria signed a treaty, the Treaty of Hubertusburg, recognizing Prussia’s control over most of Silesia. Tragedy would strike in 1765 when her husband perished. She truly loved her husband and grieved over his death for a prolonged period. Upon his death, she appointed her eldest son, Joseph II, as coregent and as Emperor. They didn’t see eye to eye having conflicting views on running the State. She viewed her son’s youth and inexperience as being rash. Joseph II flirted with enlightenment ideas which were more in accordance with her rival, Frederick the Great. She would have his powers limited for the time being. After the death of her husband, she would implement a new penal code to substitute local laws and make the law more standardized across the State. She wanted to centralize control more than she already had, even from the Church even though she was devout in her belief. The Church would become less involved in Secular matters. She would implement censorship among the populace, and lay the groundwork for compulsory education for primary students. Though she continually disagreed with her son, she did allow him to make reforms in the army. In 1767, the Archduchess became infected with Smallpox. Smallpox had been making the rounds around the royal family in the 1760s. Maria was nearly on death’s door. She was given her last rites, but then, recovered. After her recovery, she became a vapid supporter of inoculation. She would set an example for her subjects by making her children get inoculated. In her later years, she focused more so on reforming the law. For example, in 1771 Joseph II and herself issued the Robot Patent, which created regulation for the pay of serfs. She would also go on to abolish witch-burning, torture, and the death penalty. Though it should be noted that the death penalty was later reinstated. In 1772 she spoke out against the first partition of Poland, viewing it as immoral. In 1774 her plans for compulsory education came into fruition. She had a strict policy around decency. She set up a police force designed to enforce her decency policy. This police force was mainly centered in Vienna, and one class of people they would arrest were prostitutes. These women would be sent off to the small eastern villages. Some writers of the time noted, quote, “exceptionally beautiful women” unquote, lived in these tiny villages. Maria would physically become plumper as she grew older. Her health would waver and in 1780, Archduchess Maria Theresa would meet her end in Vienna. In the 650 year rule of the Hapsburg dynasty, she was the only woman who ruled.

OUTRO

Archduchess Maria Theresa was an interesting historical figure to research. What I learned about her, is not exactly what I expected to find. I hope you enjoyed this episode. The script and citations for this episode and all other episodes can be found at https://18thcentury.home.blog that’s 1, 8, t h, century dot home dot blog. Type the numbers don’t spell them. If you’d like to support the show, please share it and leave a review. I’ve been your host Cj, and thank you for listening to this episode of the 18th Century Podcast.

CITATIONS

“Maria Theresa of Austria.” Maria Theresa of Austria – New World Encyclopedia, 14 Aug. 2018, https://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Maria_Theresa_of_Austria.

Pick, Robert. “Maria Theresa.” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 14 Aug. 2019, https://www.britannica.com/biography/Maria-Theresa.

“Maria Theresa.” Biography.com, A&E Networks Television, 15 Apr. 2019, https://www.biography.com/activist/maria-theresa.

Britannica, The Editors of Encyclopaedia. “War of the Austrian Succession.” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 9 Dec. 2018, https://www.britannica.com/event/War-of-the-Austrian-Succession.

18th Century Podcast: Episode 4 Gentleman

Listen here: https://anchor.fm/cj123/episodes/18th-Century-Podcast-Episode-4-Gentleman-e46mtf/a-agc30i

Summary

In this episode we do an overview of what it meant to be a Gentleman in the 18th Century. This was a very important concept for the time. In this episode we’ll cover: What is a Gentleman, The Social Gentleman, Gentlemen of War, Dueling.

Script

INTRO


Welcome back to the 18th Century Podcast, I’m your host Cj. Today’s episode will cover a very important concept to the 18th Century, the idea of a Gentleman. Being a Gentleman was a matter of honor, and was extremely important to the people of the 18th Century. If you’d like to read the transcript for this episode and its citations, go to https://18thcentury.home.blog that’s 1, 8, t h, century dot home dot blog. Type the numbers don’t spell them. Now let’s get into what it meant to be a Gentleman of the 18th Century!

PART 1: What is a Gentleman?


Though we are discussing the concept of a Gentleman in the 18th Century, it’s origins date back far earlier. So to get a better understanding of this concept of a Gentleman, let’s go through a brief history of the concept. The word of, “Gentleman” has its roots in Latin, surprise surprise. The “Gentle” part of Gentleman is derived from the Latin, “gentilis” which it could be defined as, “belonging to the same clan… etc.” Jumping forward a bit into the Middle Ages, the concept of a Gentleman was held in a more Military tradition. Though this concept was unsurprisingly geared more towards the nobility. Though there were certain expectations of these early Gentlemen, and codes of conduct arose. As time marched onwards, the ideals of the Gentleman in regards to the Military began to change. Though the concept of action would remain in one form or another. Getting closer to the 17th Century, the concept of a Gentleman was moving from the Military towards the Royal Court. Though those in the Royal Court probably held Military aspects themselves, a Gentleman was moving towards the more social arts. As we start to move towards the 18th Century, the idea of a Gentleman began to move out of politics. The idea of a Gentleman began to be considered by the virtue of a man. Thus it can be inferred that you no longer needed to be born at the very top of the social-political hierarchy, but it was more in the style of how you would conduct yourself. Yes, a Duke could be considered a Gentleman still, but also a wealthy merchant could too. In a sense gave way to more social mobility. Though not in all senses of the word, it leaned towards it. Some common markers of a Gentleman of the 18th Century were education, manners, the type of clothing they wore, among other things as well. Though being a Gentleman in social circles was the trend, it was still present in the Miltary. Let’s cover this in two aspects, the first being in a social manner, and the second being in the Military. Let’s first get into the social.

PART 2: The Social Gentleman


A Gentleman in society was held to certain expectations. There were multiple books written on the topic during the 18th Century. Manners were important to Gentlemen, but the focus laid more heavily towards their morals. As can be inferred, a moral man was part of his virtue. There was an expectation of modesty among these men. One should not speak too highly of themselves. During dinner parties, it was considered polite to only speak among those close to you. It would have been considered impolite to yell from one end of the table to the other. Doing these actions would reflect on your status as a Gentleman. I should note, many of the ideas presented in this section reflect upon the more English idea of a Gentleman, however, there were many common threads across Europe and the Americas which share a commonality with the English. An interesting rule of etiquette which I came across was called, “give the wall” and the thought behind this was as follows, if you as a Gentleman were walking out in public with your Lady, then you would have her walk closest to the walls of shops or other buildings. The purpose was to keep her further away from the filth of the street. And some streets were pretty dirty during the time. In social functions, you would address someone by their last name and their title if they had one. Regarding the education of a Gentleman, they were schooled in the classics. Greek and Latin were very common for the upper-class Gentleman to learn. Other languages might have been taught as well, such as French. Ancient History could have been acquired too. As they would grow into their later teens, they could attend University. At a University a wide array of Academic pursuits could be had. Some of these young Gentleman would skip University and go into the Military. To the educated Gentleman, there were many paths in life to chose from. There was also a certain aspect of how a Gentleman would dress. A Gentleman could be found wearing a three-piece suit. Though the three-piece suit had its origins in the 17th Century, it was popular in the 18th Century. Starting from the basics, underwear. Now, underwear was conceived very differently during the 18th Century than today. The undergarment for Gentlemen was a shirt. To us, this would be very odd just to wear a shirt, but during the time, it was the fashion. Now the shirt would be fairly long and would drop down to about your knees, and it was made from linen. Instead of wearing what we would conceive of as socks, a Gentleman would wear stockings. In our modern setting, women typically wear stockings rather than men, however, in the 18th Century it was worn by both. If you felt like wearing particularly fashionable stockings as a Gentleman, then you would wear your cotton or maybe your silk ones. Regarding your pants, you would wear a common garment which could be found at any level of society, breeches. Your breeches could have been made from a verity of materials. There were breeches made from the like of cotton, wool, and linen, among other materials as well. Then we come to one of the most defining articles of clothing for the time period, in my opinion, the waistcoat. The waistcoat was worn by just about every Gentleman and could be made from a verity of fabrics such as linen, cotton, silk, etc… it would also come in a verity of colors and styles. You might find one man wearing an embroidered waistcoat, and another wearing one more plain. The waistcoat could also be found in a verity of colors, such as red, brown, gold, or whatever your taste was. Then on top of your clothing, you’d wear a coat. The coat was worn with just about every suit and dropped down to about knee length. Upon your head, you’d be wearing another hallmark of the time, a wig. The fashion was to wear a white powdered wig. It was considered in style for the majority of the 18th Century. On top of your wig, you may wear a hat. There was a verity of style of the 18th Century hats, one of the most common which we would recognize would be the tricone, or it could also be called a cocked hat. A quick note on footwear, a Gentleman would typically wear a low heel black shoe made from leather. Boots were also worn, given the proper circumstances. I want to finish this off with the neckwear. One of the most common articles of neckwear was the cravat. The cravat was a piece of white linen which could have been worn in a verity of styles. I’ll cover the cravat more in-depth in another episode along with other clothing. I think I’ve covered the basics of a Gentleman, during the 18th Century in a social setting. I’m going to take a short break and when I get back, we’ll discuss what it meant to be a Gentleman in the Military during the 18th Century. I’ll be right back.

PART 3: Gentlemen of War


Welcome back to the show. We’ll continue our second half of this episode with Gentlemen during times of war. I think it’s obvious to say that the majority of Gentlemen during 18th Century Warfare were Officers. I’ll cover the basics and how they would interact with each other. The topic of war during the 18th Century is a whole episode in and of itself. I’ll be covering the general aspects of warfare in another episode and at some point, I’ll cover specific wars and events related to them. The question I seek to answer here is, how did the Gentlemenly Officers interact with one another. One thing which we may find surprising about the 18th Century Generals was they would keep correspondence with the opposing sides General. For example, during the American War For Independence, British General Howe, once wrote a letter to American General Washington, addressing him as, “George Washington Esquire” instead of the more properly address of “His Excellency General” and General Washington took this as a slight against him and refused to even open the letter. It was looked down upon if you sniped an Officer from a distance, or to shot one in the back. One famous story of this happened during the American Revolution. British Colonel Patrick Ferguson once came upon an American Officer talking with a Hussar. Colonel Ferguson could have shot the men in the back and would have been done with it. He was within range, and he was concealed. However, it would have been ungentlemanly to shoot a man in the back. So, Colonel Ferguson called out to the Americans. Alerting them of his presence was considered the Gentlemanly thing to do. The American Officer and the Hussar fled. It’s thought that that American Officer, was George Washington. There was something else which was unique to the European Officers, and during the 18th Century, they were able to leave one Army to go and serve another. This was an acceptable practice during the time. And because of this, a sense of comradery was built among these Officer Gentlemen. If side A surrendered to side B, then the captured Officers were typically treated well. They were typically viewed as equal Gentlemen to one another. One example of this could be seen after British General Cornwallis’s surrender during the American Revolution. The evening of the surrender, American General Washington hosted a social event for the surrendered Officers. He invited them to dinner. General Cornwallis declined the invitation, claiming to be in poor health, so he sent Brigadier General Charles O’Hara to represent him at the dinner. The proceeding nights brought about a series of these types of dinners where Officers among the Americans and French, would dine with the British and Germans. Though it should be noted that not all the American Officers were too fond of this, as most of them weren’t raised in this tradition. However, General Washington observed the European custom. One could say, it was the Gentlemanly thing to do. This brings us to the end of this segment, and now you’d think this episode would draw to a close, but I’ve prepared a bonus segment for you, Dueling.

PART 4: Dueling


I thought this would be a nice little surprise for you guys. I’m not going into the mechanics of a duel, as that will be a future episode. I’m only going to explain the reasoning behind duels, or a basic sense of their purpose. A duel was a more personal form of combat between Gentleman, and Officers. If one man’s honor was slighted by another, then the first may challenge the offender to a Duel. Dueling was illegal in most places, as it could result in death. The Duel was typically fought with either swords or firearms, typically pistols. Swords were more favored in the 17th Century but as the 18th Century came about, pistols came into fashion. There were pistols specially made just for the purpose of Dueling. There were rules to the Duels. A written version came about in 1777, known as the Code Duello. Here are a few things which you may have been challenged to a Duel for, insulting a man, a disagreement, or in the Military for accusations of cowardice. Perhaps one of the most famous Duels in history was between Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton. Hamilton and Burr really weren’t fans of each other in the realm of politics to oversimplify it. Though we’re stepping a little out of the 18th Century and into the early 19th Century, the story is still relevant to the topic presented. Burr had thrown his hat in for a Governorship bid, and Hamilton was publically attacked Burr’s character. Outraged by this, Burr challenged Hamilton to a Duel which was held the morning of July 11th, 1804. Hamilton fired into the air, and Burr fired at Hamilton. By the end of the whole affair, Hamilton was dead. This was just one example of Dueling as it related to Gentleman, and I’ll go more in-depth in another episode dedicated to Dueling.

OUTRO


This brings us to an end of our overview of the 18th Century Gentleman. Like I said at the beginning, the transcript and citations for this episode, and all other episodes can be found at https://18thcentury.home.blog that’s 1, 8, t h, century dot home dot blog. Type the numbers don’t spell them. I know I’ve been talking a bit more about the British and the Americans, but as the episodes go on, I’ll expand outwards to other countries as well. So, if you’d like to support the show, please share it. I’ve been your host Cj, and thank you for listening to this episode of the 18th Century Podcast.

CITATIONS

“Gentleman.” Europe, 1450 to 1789: Encyclopedia of the Early Modern World. . Encyclopedia.com. 27 May. 2019 https://www.encyclopedia.com.

Hamilton, Carol V. “Whatever Happened to the Gentleman?” History News Network, historynewsnetwork.org/article/49473.

Hennecke, Megan. “Etiquette in the Eighteenth Century.” Chuma, 20 Mar. 2006, chuma.cas.usf.edu/~runge/Etiquette.htm.

“A Colonial Gentlemen’s Clothing: A Glossary of Terms.” A Colonial Gentlemen’s Clothing: A Glossary of Terms : The Colonial Williamsburg Official History & Citizenship Site, http://www.history.org/history/clothing/men/mglossary.cfm.

“18th Century Ettiquette & Expectations.” Lovers and Liars, 6 Mar. 2013, loversandliarsmedley.wordpress.com/about/a-dramaturgs-perspective/18th-century-ettiquette-expectations/.

“How to Fight Like a Gentleman – Six Astounding Rules of War From the 18th Century.” MilitaryHistoryNow.com, 29 Nov. 2017, militaryhistorynow.com/2016/04/24/gentlemens-war-six-astounding-rules-of-fair-play-from-18th-century-battlefields/.

“The Education of Upper Class Young Men.” BYU Presents PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, 1 Feb. 2014, byuprideandprejudice.wordpress.com/2014/02/05/the-education-of-upper-class-young-men-2/.

Lauterborn, David, and David Lauterborn. “League of Gentlemen: Officers of the 17th and 18th Centuries.” HistoryNet, HistoryNet, 30 June 2015, http://www.historynet.com/league-of-gentlemen-officers-of-the-17th-and-18th-centuries.htm.

“Pistols at Dawn – Officers, Gentlemen and the Deadly Tradition of Duelling.” MilitaryHistoryNow.com, 15 Apr. 2018, militaryhistorynow.com/2016/11/03/pistols-at-dawn-officers-gentlemen-and-duelling-in-the-18th-and-19th-centuries/.

“Burr Slays Hamilton in Duel.” History.com, A&E Television Networks, 24 Nov. 2009, http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/burr-slays-hamilton-in-duel.

18TH CENTURY PODCAST: Episode 3 Muskets And Rifles

Listen here: https://anchor.fm/cj123/episodes/18th-Century-Podcast-Episode-3-Muskets-and-Rifles-e44t9e/a-ag2946

Summary

In this episode of the 18th Century Podcast we take a basic overview of 18th Century Muskets and Rifles. I threw in a little bonus segment too. Topics covered in this episode include: The Flintlock Mechanism, Brown Bess Musket, French Charleville Musket, The American Long Rifle, and our Bonus segment.

Script

INTRO

Welcome back to the 18th Century Podcast, I’m your host Cj. Today’s episode will be the foundation for many future episodes. We’ll be going over some of the Muskets and Rifles of the 18th Century. I’ll be going over the basics of the Flintlock mechanism, the Brown Bess Musket, the Charleville Musket, and the Long Rifle. As a bonus, I’ll also be covering the bayonet. Pistols and Artillery will be described at a later episode. If you’d like to read the transcript for this episode and its citations, go to https://18thcentury.home.blog that’s 1, 8, th, century dot home dot blog. Type the numbers don’t spell them. Now that we got that out of the way, let’s get into the Flintlock mechanism!

PART 1: Flintlock Mechanism

I think the most important part of learning about the Flintlock, is to understand where and when it came from. The first real Flintlock has its origins in early 17th Century France. Though there are earlier models. The Flintlock Mechanism would become more popular over earlier models of firearms, such as the matchlock. Personally, out of the early firearms, the Flintlock is my favorite. I haven’t been fortunate enough to fire one yet however. Now I think the best way to describe the mechanism would be to go through a dry run of its operation. Just a quick warning, don’t take my description of this mechanism as instructions on firing it, learn from a real professional. Now, the mechanism begins as being uncocked. The first part would be to put it in a half-cocked position. To do this the hammer of the mechanism, which contains a small piece of flint, would be to a half-cock position. Essentially the hammer would be standing up and you’d hear a click. At this position, you would not be able to fire the weapon yet. Then a small amount of gunpowder would be poured into the pan, after which it would be closed. Then once the weapon is finished being loaded down its muzzle, the hammer would be brought to full-cock. To do this, it would be pulled all the way back, and now the trigger is able to be pulled. Now when the trigger is pulled, the hammer will fly forward and strike the frizzen. The frizzen is the piece of steel which stands once the pan was closed. The flint on the hammer will strike the steel frizzen creating a spark. When the spark drops down into the pan, it ignites the gunpowder resting inside. The ignited gunpowder will light the powder in the barrel of the firearm through a small hole, thus the gun has been fired. It’s a fascinating process, truly. And it’s no wonder that it remained so popular for over a century. There where different variations in the Flintlock firearms, hence different kinds of muskets in the 18th Century. We’ll first go over one of these muskets next, the British Brown Bess Musket.

PART 2: Brown Bess Musket

The Brown Bess Musket was standardized into the British Military in 1730. The Musket is a .75 Caliber Smoothbore Flintlock. Since this firearm was mostly used by the British military, I’ll be discussing it in that context. Before the standardization of the Brown Bess, each regiment’s colonel would obtain firearms for his troops. The barrel of the Brown Bess was 46 inches long. The stock was crafted from walnut wood. It came equipped with a 17-inch long bayonet, but as said before, bayonets will be discussed later in this episode. Though as decades went on, the design of the Brown Bess would change from its 1730 design. For example, the steel ramrod was introduced in 1756, and before that, it was wooden. Then only a year later there was another update. The barrel of the firearm was shortened to two different sizes, 42-inches, and 37-inches. Though the British Military chose to issue the 42-inch barrel, and it was issued to the infantry in 1769. As stated earlier, the firearm was .75 Caliber, the weight of the bullet, however, was approximately one ounce. The .75 Caliber was the standard throughout the Brown Bess’s history. Now, remember the 1768, 42-inch barrel I talked about? That version of the musket was called the Short Land Pattern, and it did make an early appearance in the 1740s, however, it was not initially intended for infantry. The original intent was for the British Dragoons. If you don’t know what a Dragoon is, all you need to know for now is that it was a type of cavalry unit. I find it as an interesting fun fact, that a weapon intended for cavalry, became the standard for the infantry. There was another model which began being issued in 1793, and it was designed by the British East India Company. This model would be called, the India Pattern. This version of the firearm had a shorter, 39-inch barrel. It was also considered to be of poorer quality. The actual name of Brown Bess is not the official name of the musket. It is, however, a nickname and it’s been more commonly referred to as a Brown Bess ever since. The Brown Bess would see action in the Seven Years War and The American Revolution. It remained in use into the 19th Century. Though it is an interesting weapon, now let’s turn our attention to the opposing sides own Musket. The French Charleville Musket.

PART 3: French Charleville Musket

A quick note before I do a deep dive into this musket, it was surprisingly difficult to find information on this musket. Take what I say about this one with a grain of salt, and I encourage you to do your own research on this one. Now then, the French Charleville Musket was initially standardized in 1717. The Musket was a .69 Caliber smoothbore flintlock. I should give a note about a smoothbore barrel. The smoothbore was less accurate than that of a rifle, so you had less of an idea where your musket ball was going to go. Like the Brown Bess, the stock was constructed from walnut. But here’s a difference, the Charleville’s butt was rounded a bit, so it could be used as a club in close quarters. The firearm was also equipped with a bayonet. Then in 1728, the firearm was improved upon it gained three barrel bands to help support the long barrel. You see the Charleville’s barrel was 46 and 3/4 inch long. In 1743, the steel ramrod was standardized. The firearm was then improved upon in 1746 and the 1746 model would be used in the French and Indian War. Then in 1763, the barrel of the Charleville was shortened. The muskets themselves were officially were called the French Infantry Muskets. They became known as the Charleville due to the American use of the firearm. The Charleville was used during the American Revolution. When the French allied themselves with the Americans during the war, a large quantity was shipped under the influence of the Marquis de Lafayette. Again I would encourage you, dear listener, to do some research on this firearm yourself. When I did research on this topic, many of the pages which came up were selling replicas and contained little information on the history of the weapon. My apologies for the shorter section. I’m going to take a short break here, and when I come back, we’ll continue our conversation with the American Long Rifle. Don’t go away.

PART 4: The American Long Rifle

Welcome back to the show, and we’ll be continuing with the American Long Rifle. The American Long Rifle has its origins with Germanic immigrants. The rifles brought over by these immigrants were .45 to .60 Caliber, however as time went on, the rifles in America changed to .40 to .45 Caliber. The models which the immigrants brought were larger and heavier. But yet again as time went on, they became smaller and lighter. Around 1750 the American Rifle was very accurate for its time. The rifle was approximately five to six feet long. Since it was manufactured in many different areas, it received regional names. Perhaps you’ve heard of the Kentucky Long Rifle. On the frontier, these Rifles were primarily used for hunting game and defense. During combat, as stated previously, the British favored the Brown Bess musket, it was quicker to reload, but far less accurate. The American Long Rifle was way more accurate, but it had a slower reload time. Due to its accuracy, it’s easy to deduce that the Riflemen during the American Revolution were essentially snipers. Early on, it was clear that Riflemen would be important to the coming American Revolution. In the Summer of 1775, The Continental Congress established ten companies of riflemen. The positions were filled quickly and Congress had to create two more companies to keep up with volunteers. Though the majority of the Military would consist of infantry using muskets, Riflemen had their fair share of action too. During the battle of Saratoga, Sergeant Timothy Murphy was tasked with sniping a British Brigadier General Simon Fraser. To get a better shot, Sergeant Murphy was perched up in a tree, and visible, approximately 300 yards away from General Fraser. The General was perched on top of his horse, practically a sitting duck. Sergeant Murphy took aim and fired. He missed his target, only grazing the General’s horse. Now it would have taken a while to reload, but Sergeant Murphy was firing no ordinary rifle, no it was a rare double barrel rifle. The Sergeant lined up his second shot and fired… again he grazed the horse. Sergeant Murphy began the process of reloading his rifle, which took about half a minute at best. He lined up his third shot and squeezed the trigger. The bullet flew across the field. And this time, found it’s mark. General Fraser was hit in his gut. When the British General fell on the field, his men broke ranks and retreated. This action would help the Americans gain victory at Saratoga. The American Long Rifle is truly an exciting firearm. Now that I’ve covered the Brown Bess, the Charleville, and the American Long Rifle, I think it’s time we get to our bonus segment, the bayonet.

PART 5: The Bayonet

Getting on with our final segment for today, the Bayonet. The Bayonet has a bit of an interesting history. It originates from 17th Century France. The earliest bayonets were described as having a double edge, and being about a foot long. The early designs would be inserted into the musket’s muzzle. I think it’s obvious enough to say, you’d have a bit of a hard time firing your weapon. This 17th Century design is called a Plug Bayonet. Then during the latter half of the 17th Century, a new type of Bayonet arose. This new Bayonet would also have its origins in France. This newer and improved model would be called, The Socket Bayonet. The difference arises here, with the Plug Bayonet being jammed down the muzzle of the musket, you were unable to fire, but with the Socket Bayonet, it had a 3-4 inch long tube which could be locked onto the muzzle instead of being shoved down it. So, with the Socket Bayonet, it was still possible to fire your musket. Around 1715 the design changed once more, it went from its double edge to a more triangular shape. The triangular shape of the Socket Bayonet is what we would most likely recognize as a bayonet today. The Socket Bayonet was the standard for infantry across Europe and the Americas during the 18th Century. So you would have seen the Bayonet in action during the French and Indian War, The American Revolution, The War of Austrian Succession, or the Great Northern War, and among many other conflicts which will be covered in future episodes.

OUTRO

Alright guys, this brings us to the end of the episode. Like I said at the beginning, the transcript and citations for this episode, and all other episodes can be found at https://18thcentury.home.blog that’s 1, 8, th, century dot home dot blog. Type the numbers don’t spell them. This episode again was just a basic overview of some of the Muskets and Rifles of the 18th Century. I know these first few episodes are a bit on the shorter side, but as this series continues, I have a feeling some of these episodes will start increasing in length. If you’d like to support the show, please share it. I’ve been your host Cj, and thank you for listening to this episode of the 18th Century Podcast.

CITATIONS

Britannica, The Editors of Encyclopaedia. “Flintlock.” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 29 Apr. 2013, http://www.britannica.com/technology/flintlock.

Brain, Marshall. “How Flintlock Guns Work.” HowStuffWorks Science, HowStuffWorks, 28 June 2018, science.howstuffworks.com/flintlock2.htm.

F., Brandon. “How Do You Load a Musket?” YouTube, YouTube, 12 Mar. 2019, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YleUgqTFHHQ.

“Brown Bess.” Encyclopedia of the American Revolution: Library of Military History. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 May. 2019 https://www.encyclopedia.com.

“Site Navigation.” Warfare History Network, warfarehistorynetwork.com/daily/military-history/revolutionary-war-weapons-the-brown-bess-musket/.

Hickman, Kennedy. “American Revolution: Brown Bess Musket.” ThoughtCo, ThoughtCo, 2 Jan. 2019, http://www.thoughtco.com/american-revolution-brown-bess-musket-2361240.

“The French Charleville .” French Charleville Musket, web.archive.org/web/20090216063113/http://11thpa.org/charleville.html.
Editor, The. “The Charleville Musket.” The Charleville Musket, 2 Apr. 2013, firearmshistory.blogspot.com/2013/04/the-charleville-musket.html.

“Site Navigation.” Warfare History Network, 10 Oct. 2018, warfarehistorynetwork.com/daily/military-history/revolutionary-war-weapons-the-american-long-rifle/.

“How Did WE Win the Revolution and the Freedom to Invent That Wonderful Institution Called The United States of America? And for That Matter, Just Who Were WE, an Unlikely Crew to Take on the Armed Might of the Greatest Military Power on Earth. Most of Us Were Tradesmen and Farmers, with a Few Trained Soldiers Who Had Served in Colonial Regiments. And the WE Has to Include Our French Friends Who Supplied Us with Arms and Equipment and Manpower without Which We Could Not Have Won.” Revolutionary War – Longrifles, http://www.revolutionarywararchives.org/longrifle.html.

“The American Longrifle.” American Rifleman, 19 June 2013, http://www.americanrifleman.org/articles/2013/6/19/the-american-longrifle/.

Britannica, The Editors of Encyclopaedia. “Bayonet.” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 23 Jan. 2015, http://www.britannica.com/technology/bayonet.

Whittle, John. “History & Evolution of the Bayonet.” Bayonet History, thearmouryonline.co.uk/BayonetHistory.htm.