Berthold Schwarz was a Franciscan monk in Freiburg, Germany. Born Konstantin Anklitzen, he adopted his new name when he entered the monastery. He is also sometimes known as Berthold der Schwarze (Berthold the Black). According to legend, he was an alchemist and the first European to discover gunpowder, somewhere between 1313 and 1353, which led directly to the creation of the first firearms. It is sometimes also claimed that he built or developed the first guns or cannon. These claims are highly disputed, as there are records of gunpowder in Europe predating this (such as Roger Bacon), as well as much evidence from the East. As the records of his monastery were destroyed, it is difficult to pinpoint a date for his discovery, or even his death. There are several stories about how and when he died, some involving an explosion, but there is little evidence to support one over another. His legend is most pervasive in Germany and in 1853, a monument was erected to him in Freiburg.
Tot zover Wikipedia. Het buskruit werd, niet door deze alchemist (die misschien helemaal niet bestaan heeft), maar door de Chinezen uitgevonden, vele eeuwen voordat wij hetzelfde deden.