Harquebuses and muskets

Matchlock musket, Styria, c.1620

Foto: UMJ/N.Lackner

The harquebus is a firearm that is about a metre long and which could be used by the cavalry due to its weight and length. The use of the musket by foot soldiers fell into decline at the end of the 16th century. Muskets are heavy, long guns which had to be laid on a supporting fork – a musket fork. Unlike harquebuses, muskets had an increased range and penetrating power and as a result of this became the infantry's main weapon.


During the 17th century, systematic drill orders were created that described the exact procedure for handling muskets, in order that soldiers did not obstruct one another while loading and shooting. In addition to the introduction of the drill, loading and shooting were practised constantly so that soldiers could carry out orders in synchronisation and thus increase the effectiveness of the weapons. A well-known drill book was published in 1607 in the Netherlands; the engraver Jacob de Gheyn II produced illustrations for each command on how to handle the rifle and the soldiers’ movements.






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Permanent Collection

Styrian Armoury

Living History

01.04.2017-31.12.2025 > Styrian Armoury

Das Landeszeughaus gilt als die größte erhaltene historische Waffenkammer der Welt. Gewinnen Sie einen unmittelbaren Eindruck von den rund 32.000 Objekte aus dem 15. bis 18. Jahrhundert!


Styrian Armoury

Herrengasse 16
8010 Graz, Österreich
T +43-316/8017-9810


Opening Hours
27. March 2021 to 31. October 2021 Tue-Sun, public holidays 10am - 5pm

admission without a guided tour (brochure)

01. November 2021 to 31. March 2022 Tue-Sun, public holidays 11am - 5pm

admission only as part of a guided tour

01. April 2022 to 30. October 2022 Tue-Sun, public holidays 10am - 5pm
01. November 2022 to 31. March 2023 Tue-Sun, public holidays 11am - 5pm

Due to the current Covid regulations, the number of participants for guided tours is limited in all houses of the Universalmuseum Joanneum.
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1st November 2021
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