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Diane Publishing Books
Throwing Fire: Projectile Technology Through History
Alfred W. Crosby (au)
Looks at hard, accurate throwing & the manipulation of fire as unique human capabilities. Humans began throwing rocks in prehistory & then progressed to javelins, & bows & arrows. We learned to make fire & used it to cook, drive game, burn out rivals, & alter landscapes. Our exploitation of these 2 capabilities figured in the extinction of many species. In historic times we invented catapults, trebuchets, & flammable liquids as Greek fire. About 1,000 years ago we invented gunpowder, which led to guns & rockets. In the 20th cent. gunpowder weaponry led us to achieve unprecedented mayhem in the most destructive wars of all time. This trend peaked with the V-2 & atomic bomb, at which point species suicide became possible. Illustrations.
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