Rocket Practice in the Marshes
Aquatint engraving with original hand colour, published by J. Grant, Woolwich 'to Illustrate the Army and Navy Register and Woolwich Gazette for 1845'.
Image size: 9" x 14", plus title and margins.
Generally excellent condition throughout though the margins are a little age-stained which would be hidden by judicious mounting.
The image shows Royal Artillery war rocket practice using a rocket launcher mounted on a tripod. It was during the fourth Anglo-Mysore war (1798-99) that Indian troops under Tipu Sultan of Mysore (1750-1799) together with his father, Hyder Ali, developed the tactic of using rocket brigades to launch mass attacks on infantry formations. These rocket attacks, used during both the third and fourth Anglo-Mysore wars, so impressed the British forces that they brought several examples of Indian gunpowder rockets back to England; these provided William Congreve (1772-1828) with the inspiration to develop his own system of war rockets. By the time this print was published they had reached a quite sophisticated level.