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A gun is a ranged weapon designed to use a shooting tube to launch typically solid projectiles, but can also project pressurized liquid, gas or even charged particles. Solid projectiles may be free-flying or tethered. A large-caliber gun is also referred to as a cannon.
Historical timeline of the development of modern weapons starting at 1364 with the first recorded use of a firearm and ending in 1892 with the introduction of automatic handguns. 1364 – First recorded use of a firearm. 1380 – Hand guns are known across Europe. 1400s – The matchlock gun appears.
Gunpowder was invented in China during the 9th century. The first firearm was the fire lance, which appeared in China between the 10–12th centuries. It was depicted in a silk painting dated to the mid-10th but textual evidence of its use does not appear until 1132, describing the siege of De’an.
All firearms are guns, which includes any type of tool that fires a projectile. A handgun is a gun that fits in your hand, which includes both pistols and revolvers. A pistol has a stationary gun chamber; a revolver has a chamber that spins.
Firearms are used to defend against criminals. For example, the presence of a gun may frighten a criminal away, thereby reducing the likelihood of loss of property, injury, prevent a robbery or death.