Gun, or MUSQUET, in the military art, is a kind of fire-arms, or weapon of offence, which forcibly discharges a ball, or other hard and solid substance, through a cylin-drical tube, by means of inflamed gunpowder.
Among the various patents obtained by gun-makers, we shall only mention one granted in 1801, to Mr. John Prosser, of Charing-cross, London, sword-cutler, for a new-contrived water-proof pan and hammer, for gun and pistol locks. - The invention consists in applying a hammer of nearly the usual form, but instead of the common plain screw-pin round which it revolves, and which attaches it to the stock, the patentee has substituted a very large pin, of sufficient dimensions to allow of its being hollowed out and perforated, and in the axis of the hammer he places the pan to contain the priming, and to communicate the fire to the chamber of the piece. - See also Fire-Arms.
As numerous misfortunes happen, with loaded guns and pistols, especially to careless youth and children, we suggest the propriety of removing the flint every time fire-arms are carried into a house; or never to suffer young people to touch them. Indeed, the artist who will contrive a moveable hammer, or at least the upper part of the hammer containing the flint, which might be easily and instantly fixed on the spur of the occasion, would be the instrument of saving many useful lives, and well deserve to be rewarded by the public ; for all other inventions of stop-locks, etc. do not afford sufficient security.