An Orsini bomb
is a spherical bomb which instead of a fuse
or timing device, is constructed of mercury fulminate
, which explodes on impact. The bomb was invented by the Italian nationalist Felice Orsini
, who threw one at Napoleon III
in 1858, but failed to kill him. Orsini tested the bomb in Putney
, as well as quarries in Sheffield
. In 1893, in retaliation for the execution of the anarchist Paulí Pallás
, who had thrown a bomb at General Arsenio Martínez Campos, the Spanish anarchist Santiago Salvador
threw two Orsini bombs into the crowd at Barcelona
's Liceu Theater
. Only one of the bombs detonated, but it killed 22 people, and injured 35. The unexploded bomb was saved, and displayed at the Van Gogh Museum in 2007, during an exhibit on Barcelona around 1900.
Antoni Gaudi included a sculpture of a demon handing an Orsini bomb to a working-class male in the exterior of Barcelona's Sagrada Familia cathedral.
- Anderson, Benedict Richard O'Gorman (2005). Under Three Flags: Anarchism And the Anti-colonial Imagination, Verso Books, ISBN 1844670376.
- Larson, Susan; Woods, Eva (2005). Visualizing Spanish Modernity, Berg Publishers, ISBN 1859738060.