Canon Gribauval de 4 livres

The Canon de 4 Gribeauval or 4-pounder was a French cannon and part of the artillery system developed by Jean Baptiste Vaquette de Gribeauval. The Old French pound (French: livre) was 1.079 English pounds, making the weight of shot about 4.3 English pounds. In the Gribeauval era, the 4-pounder was the lightest weight cannon of the French field artillery; the others were the medium Canon de 8 Gribeauval and the heavy Canon de 12 Gribeauval. The Gribeauval system was introduced in 1765 and the guns were first employed during the American Revolutionary War. The most large-scale use of Gribeauval guns occurred during the French Revolutionary Wars and the Napoleonic Wars. At first a pair of 4-pounders were assigned to each infantry battalion and were often called "battalion pieces". Later, Emperor Napoleon took the guns away from the infantry units and began to replace the 4-pounder with the 6-pounder, using captured guns as well as newly cast French cannons. However, as the French infantry declined in quality after 1809, the 4-pounders were reintroduced in order to provide direct support for formations of foot soldiers. All Gribeauval cannons were capable of firing canister shot at close-range and round shot at long-range targets. The Gribeauval system supplanted the older Vallière system, was partly replaced by the Year XI system in 1803 and completely superseded by the Valée system in 1829.