File:Cannon ball (FindID 501303).jpg

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cannon ball
Royal Institution of Cornwall, Anna Tyacke, 2012-05-03 11:10:40
cannon ball
English: Cast iron cannon ball, spherical in shape, pitted and corroded on the surface but not damaged from use. The diameter of 82 mm and weight of almost 2kg of the cannon ball compares well with examples of Civil War shot in the Royal Institution of Cornwall's collections, in particular a cannon ball from Castle Dore, Lostwithiel (TRURI 1992.91) and another from Tresillian Bridge (TRURI 1993.8), both Civil Ware battle sites. The size and weight of the ball suggests that it would fit a 'Minion' cannon which had a 3.5 inch bore and shot a 4 pound ball (Bailey, 2000, 95). These were used from the 16th century to the late 17th century but saw action in the Civil War as an antipersonnel weapon when it was known as a 'Minion Drake', derived from either the Latin word for dragon, draco, or from the famous seafarer Sir Francis Drake.

The cannon ball was found just by the road from St Austell to Mevagissey and close to the river which would have been navigable in the 17th century, though it has since silted up from mine waste. The closest landing place would have been Pentewan which was used as a port before Hawkins' harbour of the 1820s in order to transport stone from the quarries at Polrudden from the 16th century. Even though there is not a battle site nearby the main southern estuaries in this area were all controlled during the Civil War, and the Parliamentarians must have travelled and foraged between battles in the Lostwithiel, Tywardreath and Par areas and the Tregony area of the Roseland, particularly in the summer of 1644 (Roger Smith pers comm).

Depicted place (County of findspot) Cornwall
Date between 1600 and 1700
date QS:P571,+1500-00-00T00:00:00Z/6,P1319,+1600-00-00T00:00:00Z/9,P1326,+1700-00-00T00:00:00Z/9
Accession number
FindID: 501303
Old ref: CORN-251B02
Filename: DSCN8204.JPG
Credit line
Portable Antiquities Scheme logo.jpg The Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS) is a voluntary programme run by the United Kingdom government to record the increasing numbers of small finds of archaeological interest found by members of the public. The scheme started in 1997 and now covers most of England and Wales. Finds are published at
Catalog: archive copy
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current18:55, 24 January 2017Thumbnail for version as of 18:55, 24 January 20171,280 × 960 (378 KB) (talk | contribs)Portable Antiquities Scheme, CORN, FindID: 501303, post medieval, page 528, batch count 2143

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