Object Title

4.5 pr gun and carriage

4.5 pr gun and carriage



Object Number



Transferred from the Ordnance Depot, R.A.O.C., Hillsea, Portsmouth, 1936. On loan to Royal Hospital, Chelsea

Physical Description

The reinforce bears in relief the royal arms of France crowned and surmounted by the collars of the orders of Saint Michel and the Saint Esprit. On the chase is a repetition of the arms surmounted by a prince's coronet with, above, a ribbon with an almost obliterated inscription, probably LE DUC DU MAINE. Near the muzzle is the name of the gun LE VANGEUR. The base ring bears the name of the founder and date DE ST. HUBERT FECIT A ROCHEFORT 1706. It also carries a back sight formed by two very small dolphins, one now broken, facing each other. The dolphins proper are formed as dragons, ande there is acanthus foliage on the cascabel and on a band by the muzzle mouldings. The cascabel has a long stalk button and the vent is set in a scallop moulding decorated with foliage. The left trunnion is incised No.294, the right 858.

The gun is now mounted on an English 19th century solid-trail carriage


Dimensions: Length: 77 in (195.6 cm), Overall length: 83 in (210.8 cm), Diameter of trunnions: 3 and 3/8 in, Diameter of muzzle: 7 in, Diameter of breech: 10.5 in


Serial Number 858


3.5 in (8.9 cm)

Inscriptions and Marks

Left trunnion: 1294 Right trunnion: 858


Bibliographic References

H.L.Blackmore, The Armouries of the Tower of London, Ordnance Catalogue, H.M.S.O. London 1976, p.119.


'The Duc du Maine'1670-1736, a natural son of Louis XIV and Madame de Montespan, was made 'Grand Maitre de STAR Data Entry Database: VALUE Record: 2834 'Saint Hubert de Rochefort' an earlier cannon by St.Hubert, dated 1703, is in the Museo del Ejercito, Madrid (No.3886). This founder's most interesting pieces are the five-barrelled cannon (No. 0 311) and the seven-barrelled mortar (No. 0 318) now in the musee de l'Armee, Paris. The first is signed INVENTE ET FAIT PAR SAINT-HUBERT A ROCHEFORT EN 1710, the second simply INVENTE PAR SAINT-HUBERT 1710. The cannon foundry at Rochefort was established in 1669 and continued in production until 1840 when its functions were transferred to Ruelle.
Ruelle, in the Charente, was one of the main cannon foundries of the 18th and 19th centuries and was conveniently situated to the port of Rochefort.