by Jacqueline Manzano


Gunpowder was accidentally discovered by alchemists looking for a concoction that would create immortality in humans. This was ironic because they discovered something that could take human life away.

Gun Powder and Interesting Facts

  • In Chinese gunpowder was called huo yao meaning flaming medicine
  • Made of a mixture of potassium nitrate (saltpeter), charcoal, and sulfur
  • The Chinese used gunpowder for signal flares and fireworks before using it for military use
  • At the end of the Tang Dynasty gunpowder was used for military purposes
  • Song Dynasty military forces used this as early as 904 A.D. against the Mongols
  • Military applications of gunpowder include was hand grenades, poisonous gas shells, flame throwers, and land mines
  • The song was concerned about gunpowder being spread to other countries so they banned the sale of saltpeter to foreigners at 1076
  • In the 12th and 13th centuries gunpowder spread to the Arab countries, then Greece, other European countriees
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Gunpowder took awhile to spread because the Chinese did not want foreigners to obtain their gunpowder and how to make it. Some ways that traveled throughout many countries was through the Mongols and the Silk road. The most important thing that I learned was how gunpowder was made and how it was invented.

Even though gunpowder was invented by accident, it is profoundly used throughout many countries for military purposes and protection. Some of the devices that derived from gunpowder are now seen today in many countries which are used in various ways. One example may be guns and also fireworks.

The deadly irony of gunpowder - Eric Rosado