dated 1514 Jörg von Guntheim, Basle
length 493 cm, calibre 12.5 cm
The gun is a work by the Strasbourg bell and gun founder Jörg von Guntheim of unique artistic quality. The bronze casting is decorated with Late Gothic ornamentation and finely chased. The middle section bears the Basle coat of arms held by a lion. The date of production is given by the figure 1514 on the chamber. An inscription in Gothic miniscule on the front section runs: "ich bin der track ungehir was ich schis das duon ich mit fir meister ierg zu strosburg gos mich" (I am the monstrous dragon dire, what I shoot I do with fire. Master Jorg of Strasbourg cast me). A fearsome dragon's head holds the mouth of the barrel in its open jaws. A Late Gothic frieze running round the barrel forms the transition from the smooth tube to the strong, octagonal mouth flange. The renowned founder from Strasbourg worked for Emperor Maximilian and the kings of Aragon and England among others. On 17 December 1513 the council of Basle commissioned him to cast several guns, the city providing the bronze from obsolete and broken guns and also making available the assistants and tools. 'The dragon was cast in 1514 in the workshop of the Basle armoury.