An Early 18th Century, Noon Day Gun, by John Shaw, Whitechapel, London

An Early 18th Century, Noon Day Gun, by John Shaw, Whitechapel, London

Stock Number: 20170722

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Offered for sale is an Antique example of what is known as a "Noon Day Gun", which is basically a single shot, muzzle loading brass/bronze cannon, which is mounted on a heavy, marble base, in such a way, that the overhead, brass mounted magnifying lens, was able to concentrate the powerful rays of the sun at Noon, onto the black powder primed touch hole of the cannon, setting off the charge within the barrel. Signed John Shaw Londinni Fecit Anno 1731.

Dimensions

See Text

Circa

C 1731

Country of manufacture

UK and Ireland

Categories: Maritime, Scientific, Early Technology, Other Maritime Antiques

Description

Offered for sale is an Antique example of what is known as a “Noon Day Gun”, which is basically a single shot, muzzle loading brass/bronze cannon, which is mounted on a heavy, marble base, in such a way, that the overhead, brass mounted magnifying lens, was able to concentrate the powerful Rays of the sun at Noon, onto the black powder primed touch hole of the cannon, setting off the charge within the barrel. From the photos, one can see that the round marble base is profusely engraved with points of the compass, and other pictorial Vignettes, including some  Hunting Scenes.  Also engraved is    “John Shaw Londini Fecit” and “Anno 1731”.   He was a well know gunmaker, based in Whitechapel, London, from C1690.  The marble base has a diameter of 12 inches, and is in very good condition, with no obvious cracks or chips, and all the engraving is clean and clear. The brass/bronze cannon barrel has an o/a length of 6.5 inches, and is stamped with a coat of arms motif. The hinged double arm magnifying lens brass/bronze holder is in vg condition, with a focal length of 6.5 inches from the lens to the barrel touch hole. I have been able to place a piece of paper over the touch hole, and burn a neat hole through it, using the rays of the Midday Sun.  Please note that in order to actually purchase, possess, and ignite black powder within the barrel, the owner would require a UK Black Powder Licence.  An item such as this would have been used in Marinas, and places of business, where it was important to know when the time had reached Noon 

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GB Millais Antiques

Millais Antiques

I have been interested in scientific instruments since my grammar school days, university , and then working as a DentalSurgeon, until retirement from that profession, twelve years ago. My antiques business was set up 37 years ago, having followed the footsteps of my father. Throughout this time I have dealt in scientific instruments, mainly of a military connection. This includes military instruments, microscopes, compasses, Nauticalia, Telescopes, large and small, and optical items and even writing cases.

I attend the Science Fair in,London, and other Antique Fairs, especially the IACF Fairs, at Ardingly, West Sussex, The "Military Odyssey" at Detling, Kent, and occasionaly,the Bisley Fairs, and Birmingham, at the NMM.

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