Shrapnel, Henry

▪ British inventor
born June 3, 1761, Bradford-on-Avon, Wiltshire, Eng.
died March 13, 1842, Southampton, Hampshire

      artillery officer and inventor of a form of artillery case shot. Commissioned in the Royal Artillery in 1779, he served in Newfoundland, Gibraltar, and the West Indies and was wounded in Flanders in the Duke of York's unsuccessful campaign against the French in 1793. In 1804 he became an inspector of artillery and spent several years at Woolwich arsenal.

      Shrapnel's invention, perfected by long, private research, consisted of a spherical projectile filled with bullets and fitted with a small charge fired by a time fuse; as the projectile neared the enemy lines, the charge burst the container, and the bullets continued onward in a widening swath. Later versions altered the spherical projectile to a cylindrical shape and increased the bursting charge. The introduction of high-explosive ammunition led to the abandonment of case shot, the violently exploded shell casing itself serving the purpose far better. The term shrapnel continued to be used to designate such shell splinters.

* * *

Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Henry Shrapnel — (* 3. Juni 1761 in Bradford on Avon, England; † 13. März 1842 in Southampton) war ein britischer Offizier und Erfinder der nach ihm benannten Schrapnell Granate …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • shrapnel — /shrap nl/, n. 1. Mil. a. a hollow projectile containing bullets or the like and a bursting charge, designed to explode before reaching the target, and to set free a shower of missiles. b. such projectiles collectively. 2. shell fragments. [1800… …   Universalium

  • Henry Shrapnel — Portrait d Henry Schrapnel Naissance 3 juin 1761 à Bradford on Avon Wiltshire, en …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Shrapnel — is the term originally applied to an anti personnel artillery shell which carried a large number of individual bullets to the target and then ejected them forwards, relying almost entirely on the shell s velocity for their lethality. Today the… …   Wikipedia

  • Shrapnel (Transformers) — Shrapnel is the name of several fictional characters in the various Transformers universes. Shrapnel is perhaps the only Transformer indirectly named for a real person, Henry Shrapnel, inventor of the exploding shell, who lent his name to the by… …   Wikipedia

  • Shrapnel (disambiguation) — Shrapnel refers to fragments produced by an explosion or to the spherical shot or musket balls dispersed when a shrapnel shell bursts.It may also refer to:;People *Henry Shrapnel, (1761 1842) was a British Army officer and inventor, most famously …   Wikipedia

  • Shrapnel —    Henry Shrapnel (1761 1842), born in Bradford on Avon, received a commission from the British army and served as an artillery officer in Gibraltar, the West Indies, and Newfoundland. During his career he rose from the rank of lieutenant to… …   Dictionary of eponyms

  • shrapnel — ► NOUN 1) small metal fragments thrown out by the explosion of a shell, bomb, etc. 2) shells designed to burst short of the target and shower it with shrapnel. ORIGIN named after the British soldier General Henry Shrapnel (1761 1842), inventor of …   English terms dictionary

  • Shrapnel — ist der Name folgender Personen: Henry Shrapnel (1761–1842), britischer Offizier und Erfinder John Shrapnel (* 1942), britischer Schauspieler Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zur Unterscheidung mehrerer mit demselben Wo …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • shrapnel — (n.) 1806, from Gen. Henry Shrapnel (1761 1842), who invented a type of exploding, fragmenting shell when he was a lieutenant in the Royal Artillery during the Peninsular War. The invention consisted of a hollow cannon ball, filled with shot,… …   Etymology dictionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.