Baker Rifle

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Baker Rifle (1801-1837), Caliber - 0.625 inch (15.9 mm)
Sean Bean holds a Baker at the Royal Armouries, Leeds, for History Channel's documentary Sean Bean On Waterloo (2015). Bean remarked that it was the first time he had handled a genuine Baker (a carefully preserved Napoleonic relic), as all of the weapons he handled in the Sharpe series were replicas.

The Baker Rifle (officially designated the "Infantry Rifle") was a flintlock rifle issued to the Rifle regiments of the British Army during the Napoleonic Wars. It was the first standard-issue rifle of the British Army.

History

The Baker was issued to the specialized Rifle brigades of the British Army, who were tasked to act as skirmishers and scouts rather than regular line infantry. The weapon was prized for its long-range accuracy but slow to reload, since ramming a lead ball down the muzzle of a rifled barrel was more difficult than doing the same with a smooth-bore musket. Furthermore, the rifling was even more effective if the balls were first wrapped in small leather patches, which increased reloading time still more. Because of this disadvantage, smooth-bore muskets remained the standard-issue weapons for the majority of Napoleonic-era armies, and Napoleon Bonaparte refused to issue rifles to any units of the French Army.

British rifle units used the Baker in Europe during the Napoleonic Wars and in Canada during the War of 1812. Bakers were also supposedly carried by Mexican soldiers at the Battle of the Alamo, and the Nepalese government has recently released stores of Bakers that were previously supplied to its army.

Probably the most famous shot fired by a Baker was by Rifleman Thomas Plunket during the retreat to La Coruna, which flew an unmeasured but incredibly long distance (estimated as much as 800 yards) to kill French General Auguste Colbert (a short while later, just to prove that it wasn't a fluke, Plunket scored another hit on one of Colbert's aides).

The Baker has enjoyed a resurgence of historical and public interest thanks to its extensive use in the Sharpe series, based on the books by Bernard Cornwell.


The Baker Rifle has been used in the following films and television series:


Film

Title Actor Character Note Date
Sharpe's Rifles Sean Bean Lt. Richard Sharpe 1993
Daragh O'Malley Private Patrick Harper
Michael Mears Private Cooper
Jason Salkey Private Harris
John Tams Private Daniel Hagman
Paul Trussell Private Isiah Tongue
Lyndon Davies Private Perkins
Sharpe's Eagle Sean Bean Capt. Richard Sharpe 1993
Daragh O'Malley Sgt. Patrick Harper
Michael Mears Private Cooper
Jason Salkey Private Harris
John Tams Private Daniel Hagman
Paul Trussell Private Isiah Tongue
Lyndon Davies Private Perkins
Sharpe's Company Sean Bean Capt. Richard Sharpe 1994
Daragh O'Malley Sgt. Patrick Harper
Michael Mears Private Cooper
Jason Salkey Private Harris
John Tams Private Daniel Hagman
Lyndon Davies Private Perkins
Sharpe's Enemy Sean Bean Maj. Richard Sharpe 1994
Daragh O'Malley Sgt. Patrick Harper
Michael Mears Private Cooper
Jason Salkey Private Harris
John Tams Private Daniel Hagman
Lyndon Davies Private Perkins
60th Regiment Riflemen
Sharpe's Honour Sean Bean Maj. Richard Sharpe 1994
Daragh O'Malley Sgt. Patrick Harper
Michael Mears Private Cooper
Jason Salkey Private Harris
John Tams Private Daniel Hagman
Lyndon Davies Private Perkins
Sharpe's Gold Sean Bean Maj. Richard Sharpe 1995
Daragh O'Malley Sgt. Patrick Harper
Michael Mears Private Cooper
Jason Salkey Private Harris
John Tams Private Daniel Hagman
Lyndon Davies Private Perkins
Sharpe's Battle Sean Bean Maj. Richard Sharpe 1995
Daragh O'Malley Sgt. Patrick Harper
Jason Salkey Private Harris
John Tams Private Daniel Hagman
Lyndon Davies Private Perkins
Sharpe's Sword Sean Bean Maj. Richard Sharpe 1995
Daragh O'Malley Sgt. Patrick Harper
Jason Salkey Private Harris
John Tams Private Daniel Hagman
Sharpe's Regiment Sean Bean Maj. Richard Sharpe 1996
Daragh O'Malley Sgt. Patrick Harper
Jason Salkey Private Harris
John Tams Private Daniel Hagman
Sharpe's Siege Sean Bean Maj. Richard Sharpe 1996
Daragh O'Malley Sgt. Patrick Harper
Jason Salkey Private Harris
John Tams Private Daniel Hagman
Philip Whitchurch Capt. William Frederickson
Sharpe's Mission Sean Bean Maj. Richard Sharpe 1996
Daragh O'Malley Sgt. Patrick Harper
Jason Salkey Private Harris
John Tams Private Daniel Hagman
Sharpe's Revenge Sean Bean Maj. Richard Sharpe 1997
Daragh O'Malley Sgt. Patrick Harper
Philip Whitchurch Capt. William Frederickson
Sharpe's Justice Sean Bean Maj. Richard Sharpe 1997
Daragh O'Malley Sgt. Patrick Harper
Sharpe's Waterloo Sean Bean Lt. Col. Richard Sharpe 1997
Daragh O'Malley Patrick Harper
Jason Salkey Sgt. Harris
John Tams Sgt. Daniel Hagman
The Alamo Patrick Wilson Lt. Col. William Travis 2004
Sharpe's Challenge Sean Bean Richard Sharpe 2006
Daragh O'Malley Patrick Harper
Sharpe's Peril Sean Bean Richard Sharpe 2008
Daragh O'Malley Patrick Harper

Video Games

Game Title Appears as Mods Notation Release Date
Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3 Not usable 2017



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