The Brown Bess


Nov 5, 2009
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3-5 pw
2-4 games.
Brown Bess is a nickname of uncertain origin for the British Army's Land Pattern Musket and its derivatives. This musket was used in the era of the expansion of the British Empire and acquired symbolic importance at least as significant as its physical importance. It was in use for over a hundred years with many incremental changes in its design. These versions include the Long Land Pattern, Short Land Pattern, India Pattern, New Land Pattern Musket, Sea Service Musket and others.


The Long Land Pattern musket and its derivatives, all .75 caliber flintlock muskets, were the standard long guns of the British Empire's land forces from 1722 until 1838 when they were superseded by a percussion cap smoothbore musket. The British Ordnance System converted many flintlocks into the new percussion system known as the Pattern 1839 Musket. A fire in 1841 at the Tower of London destroyed many muskets before they could be converted. Still, the Brown Bess saw service until the middle of the nineteenth century. Some were used by Maori warriors during the Musket Wars 1820s-1830s, having purchased them from European traders at the time, some were still in service during the Indian rebellion of 1857, and also by Zulu warriors, who had also purchased them from European traders during the Anglo-Zulu War in 1879, and some were sold to the Mexican Army who used them during the Texas Revolution of 1836 and the Mexican-American War of 1846 to 1848. One was even used in the Battle of Shiloh in 1862.

Most male citizens of the American Colonies were required by law to own arms and ammunition for militia duty.[SUP][/SUP] The Long Land Pattern was a common firearm in use by both sides in the American Revolutionary War
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"Brown Bess"
The Army Musket 1700-1815

In the days of lace-ruffles, perukes and brocade
Brown Bess was a partner whom none could despise -
An out-spoken, flinty-lipped, brazen-faced jade,
With a habit of looking men straight in the eyes -
At Blenheim and Ramillies fops would confess
They were pierced to the heart by the charms of Brown Bess.

Though her sight was not long and her weight was not small,
Yet her actions were winning, her language was clear;
And everyone bowed as she opened the ball
On the arm of some high-gaitered, grim grenadier.
Half Europe admitted the striking success
Of the dances and routs that were given by Brown Bess.

When ruffles were turned into stiff leather stocks,
And people wore pigtails instead of perukes,
Brown Bess never altered her iron-grey locks.
She knew she was valued for more than her looks.
"Oh, powder and patches was always my dress,
And I think am killing enough," said Brown Bess.

So she followed her red-coats, whatever they did,
From the heights of Quebec to the plains of Assaye,
From Gibraltar to Acre, Cape Town and Madrid,
And nothing about her was changed on the way;
(But most of the Empire which now we possess
Was won through those years by old-fashioned Brown Bess.)

In stubborn retreat or in stately advance,
From the Portugal coast to the cork-woods of Spain,
She had puzzled some excellent Marshals of France
Till none of them wanted to meet her again:
But later, near Brussels, Napoleon - no less -
Arranged for a Waterloo ball with Brown Bess.

She had danced till the dawn of that terrible day -
She danced till the dusk of more terrible night,
And before her linked squares his battalions gave way,
And her long fierce quadrilles put his lancers to flight:
And when his gilt carriage drove off in the press,
"I have danced my last dance for the world!" said Brown Bess.

Where old weapons are shown with their names writ beneath,
You will find her, upstanding, her back to the wall,
As stiff as a ramrod, the flint in her teeth.
And if ever we English had reason to bless
Any arm save our mothers', that arm is Brown Bess!

Rudyard Kipling

Meat Grinder

FGM Colonel
Apr 4, 2015
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Turn Rate
1-2 pw
2-4 games.
LMAO... this guys demonstrates firing the The Brown Bess 3 times in 46 seconds... WTF happened with his 3rd shot... !!
Just a delay in firing probably due to the pinhole between the flash pan and the musket barrel becoming partially clogged. What is more concerning to me is the fact that he did not take even one second to aim his weapon. I know smoothbores have horrible accuracy, but a few seconds to aim and actually hit something.......


That's where volley fire comes in, as it says in the second vid clip, the optimum range was 50 yards so you potentially have a mass target at what is in modern terms point blank range, not much aiming needed.
The side who got off the most shots before the bayonet (or sword if you're Light infantry) came into play would have an advantage.

Although he does it well enough in the first clip, he's not having to load with "ball" just powder & wadding.