Sir William Blunt-Instrument

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Cosh and blackjack maker Sir William Blunt-Instrument was found dead in an alley, almost certainly killed by a cosh. It was this incident that started the rumour that makers of weaponry invariably die due to them. This is palpably not true, however: according to the footnote in Feet of Clay, "Colonel Shrapnel wasn't blown up, M. Guillotin died with his head on, Colonel Gatling wasn't shot. If it hadn't been for Sir William Blunt-Instrument, the rumour would never have got started."


On Roundworld, it was Major-General Henry Shrapnel (1761–1842), an English artillery officer, whose experiments—initially conducted in his own time, and at his own expense—culminated in the design and development of a new type of artillery shell. Likewise, it was Dr. Richard Jordan Gatling who created the Gatling gun in 1861 and patented it in 1862, and Dr. Joseph-Ignace Guillotin (May 28, 1738 – March 26, 1814) proposed on October 10, 1789 the use of a mechanical device to carry out death penalties in France. While he did not invent the guillotine, his name became an eponym for it. He didn't even believe in the death penalty! He thought a more humane and less painful method of execution would be the first step toward its total abolition. However, just as on the Disc, contrary to popular belief, Guillotin did not die on the machine given his name, but rather from a carbuncle on the left shoulder