Zvezda 1/72 Russian Heavy Artillery 1812-14 (35 w/3 Cannons) Kit
he “unicorn” cannon was a smoothbore artillery piece used widely in Russia during the War of 1812. It was a type of muzzle-loaded howitzer that was designed to fire projectiles over a longer range than contemporary cannon but with a flatter trajectory than other howitzers of its time. The design was introduced into the Imperial Russian armory in 1758 and would continue to be used until the Crimean War. During the Battle of Borodino, the “unicorn” guns of the famous Rayevsky Battery inflicted tremendous losses on Napoleon’s regiments.
Many different gauges of “unicorn” cannons were built, mostly firing 12 or 18 pound balls. The cannon featured a conical chamber, which was easier to load since it was designed to place the projectile perfectly in the center of the barrel. “Unicorn” guns could fire a solid shot, grapeshot, or canister rounds. The name “unicorn” derived from the distinctive handles mounted on the barrels of the guns.