Artillery is a weapon of war that operates by projection of munitions far beyond the effective range of personal weapons. Artillery comprise specialised devices which use some form of stored energy to operate, whether mechanical, chemical, or electromagnetic. Originally designed to breach fortifications, they have evolved from nearly static installations intended to reduce a single obstacle to highly mobile weapons of great flexibility in which now reposes the greater portion of a modern army's offensive capabilities.

Originally artillery was any group of infantry primarily armed with projectile weapons. Since the development of cannon, the word "artillery" in practice has largely meant cannon; in contemporary usage it usually refers to shell-firing guns, howitzers, mortars, and rockets. In common speech the word artillery is individual devices, together with their accessories and fittings, although these assemblages are more properly called equipment. By association, artillery may also refer to the arm of service that customarily operates such engines.

Artillery is the most lethal form of land-based armament; in the Napoleonic Wars, World War I and World War II the vast majority of combat deaths were caused by artillery.[1] In 1944, Joseph Stalin said in a speech that artillery was "the God of War"

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