Designed to batter heavy construction with solid shot at long or short range; destroy fort parapets and, by ricochet fire, dismount cannon; shoot grape, canister, or bombs against massed personnel. Field, garrison and siege designations/carriages. A longer, more flat trajectory, calibers in pounds.
Designed to hurl larger projectiles (usually bombs) than the field piece, in a high trajectory similar to the mortar, but from a lighter and more mobile weapon. Lightweight field carriages, calibers in inches.
High, arcing trajectory. Mounted on a "bed"—a pair of wooden cheeks held together by transoms. Since a bed had no wheels, the piece was transported on a mortar wagon or sling cart. In the battery, the mortar was generally bedded upon a level wooden platform; aboard ship, it was a revolving platform, so that the piece could be quickly aimed right or left. The mortar's weight, plus the high angle of elevation, kept it pretty well in place when it was fired, although British artillerists took the additional precaution of lashing it down. Traditionally fired bombs, caliber in inches.