A hand grenade

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A hand grenade

One form of hand grenade employed by the troops in the Civil War was a hollow thrown ceramic sphere, packed with explosives through a small circular hole in the vessel's top. The hole was plugged by a cork, presumably with a fuse running down to the charge. This pottery vessel, initially misidentified as a hand-warmer, is such a device. Its context is undated but is most likely to be of Civil War date.

Acknowledgments: © 2015 Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery, Exeter City Council