Attack by Fire
|Attack by Fire|
"Of all the elements, fire alone brings fear and death."
Gunpowder is a dangerous weapon, to the user as well as the target. Even during manufacture, gunpowder can kill, doing terrible slaughter when it explodes.
The sulphurous, reeking gunpowder is terrifying in fire bombs. These lethal weapons are normally hurled into enemy ranks by horuku, specially trained bombers. The bombs will cause terror and chaos among the unprepared, and set fire to anything at all flammable. The larger ones are thrown by mangonels.
Gunpowder originated in China, and the first recorded recipes date to around the 1040s, although accounts hundreds of years older are obviously describing something very similar to gunpowder. The Mongols copied gunpowder as a result of its use by the Chinese, and they used it against Japanese warriors in the 13th Century. Kublai Khan and his Mongols were driven back by the kamikaze and, thanks to this divine intervention, the Japanese never seemed all that bothered about gunpowder weapons. It was only with the arrival of European traders that guns and gunpowder were re-introduced to the Japanese by a very circuitous route.