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  • The English Civil War has frequently been depicted as a struggle between Cavaliers and Roundheads in which technology played little part. The first-hand sources now tell us that this romantic picture is deeply flawed - revealing a reality of gunpowder, artillery, and a grinding struggle of siege and starvation. As with naval warfare, developments in gun technology drastically changed land warfare in the years leading up to 1642. The Civil War was itself shaped largely by the availability of munitions. A failure to procure them in 1643 and 1644 - combined with abortive attempts on London - ultimately proved the downfall of the Royalists. Moreover a final move away from fortified local garrisons reshaped both the nature of warfare in England, and the country itself. Stephen Bull is Curator of Military History and Archaeology, Lancashire Museums.