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  1. In modern language, a 'torpedo' is an underwater self-propelled explosive,—but historically, the term also applied to primitive naval mines. These were used on an ad hoc basis during the early modern period up to the late 19th century. Early spar torpedoes were created by the Dutchman Cordnelius Drebbel in the employ of King James I of England; he attached explosives to the end of a beam affixed to one of his own submarines and they were used (to little effect) during the English expeditions to La Rochelle in 1626. An early submarine, the Turtle, attempted to lay a bomb with a timed fu
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