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The small barrel of gunpowder which, in the days before powder was made up into cartridges, was brought on deck to serve the guns. It held a hundredweight (about 50 kg) of powder and the top end was fitted with a leather flap or bag drawn tight by a string which, when the barrel was brought to the guns, covered the open end to lessen the danger of accidental firing. After the introduction of cartridges, which dates from about 1580, budge-barrels were generally only used in harbour for the purpose of firing salutes. In the US Navy in the early 19th century budge-barrels were used as ready service lockers for powder cartridges and shot for the swivel guns in the fighting tops.

See also powder monkey.

See also powder monkey.

Subjects: Maritime History.

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