Pikemen engaged in battle

17th Century

YouTube link to English Civil War Musket loading The period of the English Civil Wars (1642-49) saw important changes in both arms and armour, as well as the types of soldiers employed in battle. Firearms became more important and armour was used less than before.

The Royal Armouries houses one of the finest collections of arms and armour of the mid-17th century in the world. In addition to the arsenal collection preserved at the Tower of London since the time of its use, the museum acquired the armoury from Littlecote House in 1985; the last major Civil War armoury then remaining in private hands. This collection is important for its groups of buffcoats, baldricks and carbine slings as well as for its muskets, carbines and pistols.

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Did you know?

Longest-range gun ever built

During the First World War, Germany built the longest-range gun ever. Its 100 kg projectile travelled 122km, and left the muzzle at 1500 metres per second reaching a height of about 40 km. This is higher, and about 6 times faster, than a transatlantic jet