A VERY FINE FACTORY REFINISHED COLT MODEL 1851 NAVY REVOLVER WITH CASE
Whether you are for or against refinishing a genuine antique Colt Navy revolver, there is no doubt that a factory refinished Colt is not only the most desirable but also the most expensive solution. We are informed that Colt are no longer currently offering this service on the Colt Navy. This particular Colt Model 1851 navy was refinished by Colt in 1993 with the exception of the grips which were considered to be in excellent original condition. The factory letter included with the revolver confirms the factory refinish and also validates date of manufacture as 1855.
The photographs of this revolver speak volumes. For a revolver to be refinished it needs to be in fine condition like this one otherwise round edges, worn engraving etc will only be accentuated. All matching numbers. The casing for this revolver is a superbly made (in the USA) copy of a Colt dealer case of the period. Bullet mould is not marked Colts Patent but is period. Powder flask is a later addition. Very fine refinished condition with strong case colours and excellent blue. Strong New York City address on barrel. Crisp edges and engraving. Original grips with 95% plus original varnish.
AN IMPORTANT EXTREMELY RARE AND PROBABLY UNIQUE FRENCH FLINTLOCK DOUBLE-BARREL NAPOLEONIC PEACE TREATY PISTOL MADE BY THE FRENCH ROYAL ARMOURY FOR A HIGH STATUS INDIVIDUAL
14 bore (.70), 6.5" barrels with patent breech. All of the working parts are contained within the locks similar to the Henry Nock enclosed style of locks. Gold filled pans. Outside of locks are relief engraved with gilt finish to the background. Left lockplate faintly inscribed SIGNATURE D' ARMISTICE (meaning - signing of armistice). Above the right hand lockplate is inscribed PROPOS (next four letters are unclear) L'AIX (could be PROPOSAL DE L'AIX, meaning prososal of Aix). Both lockplates depict scenes of French soldiers some of whom are trading with other figures who appear to be North American Indians.
The top of the barrels are etched/engraved and also have a gilt background finish. There is faint engraving down the central barrel rib PASSAGE DU MINCIO. On each barrel there is a worn battle scene with cavalry, cannon, horses and soldiers. Under the barrel there is a clear inspector's view/proof/barrel makers mark A over C : the mark of A. Colomb of the Manufacture Royale de St Etienne, the French Royal Armoury, French Empire Period, post 1810 (see Der Neue Stockel Vol 3, p.1698). Also under the barrel are the marks of RONARD MENUT* and CANON TORDU (Damascus twist barrel). Original engraved tang also has gilt inlays. The plain triggerguard and buttcap test as silver. All barrel and lock parts are original, but the stock is almost certainly an old period replacement, because it is crude in its appearance compared to a French stock of the period from the Royal Armoury.
The reference to Aix on the lockplate and other armistice inscriptions refer to Aix-la-Chapelle which was the location of three peace treaty conferences involving the French, the first in 1668, the second in 1748 and the final one, most relevant to this pistol, in 1818. The peace treaty of 1748 of Aix-la-Chapelle between Britain and France restored the fortress of Louisburg, Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia to France in return for Madras in India to the British. These earlier treaties may partly explain the symbolic presence of French soldiers and North American Indians engraved on the lockplates.
The barrel engraving depicting the Passage du Mincio is the most intriguing part of this pistol and is symbolic of French power during the Napoleonic Wars as the French engaged the Austrian Empire there in 1796, 1800 and 1814. The engraving bears a striking resemblance to a French period engraving print of the first Passage Du Mincio in 1796. The French General in Command in this battle was no less than Napoleon himself as part of the Italian campaign in the spring of 1796 that started the Napoleonic myth –there are many references to this in history such as Sir Walter Scotts, The life of Napoleon Bonaparte, the memoirs of Napoleon by Bourrienne and even a description in The Military career of Napoleon the Great; an account of the remarkable campaigns of the "man of destiny"linking a personal safety incident after the crossing to the origins of forming his beloved Imperial Guard.
Napoleon used his achievements in this Italian campaign to advance his popularity and commissioned a series of medals to commemorate his victories. The battle scenes on this barrel of crossing the Mincio are also glorifying Napoleon in a similar style – indeed it may well be Napoleon engraved on the barrel on one the horses on the left hand barrel. Further scrutiny of the barrel engraving with positions of the soldiers, horses and engraved swirls etc leads us to believe that the River Mincio is represented by the central barrel rib with Austrians on the right hand barrel and the French army on the left barrel. There is also what appears to be a French soldier bending towards a cannon which points across the ‘Mincio’ central barrel rib and another cannon on the other side pointing towards the French. The presence of cannon is of importance because of Napoleons background as an artillery officer.
We have been unable to trace a barrel maker by the name of Ronard Menut whose name appears under the barrel. Further research in the archives for the French Royal Armoury may reveal more about this person who could be the engraver – indeed there could even be sketches for the final agreed engraving for this pistol which would send the value of this pistol skywards. The pistol is therefore probably a unique presentation piece possibly made for the French delegate (the royalist Duc de Richelieu) to be presented as a gift for one of the leaders of the allied powers at the Congress/Treaty of Aix la Chapelle in 1818. This congress was attended by representatives of the four Allied Powers, the Quadruple Alliance of Britain, Austria, Prussia and Russia with the primary aim of the congress to agree the withdrawal of Allied troops from France over 3 years after their victory at the Battle of Waterloo which had ended the Napoleonic Wars. This very important conference was attended, amongst others, by the Duke of Wellington and Lord Castlereagh for Britain. The fact that the pistol is still glorifying Napoleon on the barrel scene was perhaps not the most appropriate diplomatic gift for such a peace conference – perhaps they should have stuck with the symbolic lockplates!
A real sleeper in worn condition. The stock is complete but rather crude compared to French stocks of the period. Barrels and metalwork have an even unrestored worn patina. Gold inlays and gilding are present but worn. The triggerguard shows signs of repair. Engraving mostly clear with no refreshing. Looking at the left lockplate under a magnifying glass it is easy to identify many French uniformed soldiers of the mid 18th century and native Indians along with trade goods. The right hand lockplate is less clear. The scene depicted on the barrel is also worn but there are certainly rows of soldiers, cannon and horses charging against each other on both sides of the central barrel rib.
Overall a historic and unique pistol for the Napoleonic collector with a barrel battle scene probably depicting Napoleon. With the 200th Anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo rapidly approaching in 2015 this pistol is a unique artefact of the Napoleonic era. The value would be considerably enhanced with further research which may lead a collector to instigate its restoration. We prefer to keep the pistol in its ‘as found’ condition and can only wish we knew more of its movements since manufacture. The only one we can verify is that it was purchased in February 2004 from Denmark.
CASED 20 BORE DOUBLE BARREL SPORTING GUN BY JOSEPH MANTON MADE IN 1792 FOR VISCOUNT HAMILTON PROBABLY CONVERTED FROM FLINTLOCK BY JAMES PURDEY
An excellent cased 31" double barrel 20 bore percussion sporting gun by Joseph Manton, London. Damascus twist sighted barrels with London Proof Marks, each numbered 384 with J.P. 20 on each barrel alongside the breech plug. Very good barrel bores. Top rib signed 'Joseph Manton PATENT Elevation'. Original ram rod with captive worm tip. Finely engraved tang, foliate engraved locks signed 'Joseph Manton LONDON' with matching foliate engraved percussion hammers, matching engraved steel mounts including butt, trigger plate with grip safety and pineapple finial. Walnut half-stock with finely chequered wrist and fore-end, silver barrel bolt escutcheons, silver escutcheon to stock with Viscount's Coronet and Hamilton Crest. In original fitted and lined case with makers trade label for Davies Street, the lid with flush fitting brass carrying handle, brass escutcheon engraved with owners crest (as on stock), accessories including sealed box of 250 percussion caps by Joyce, leather shot flask with game scene, powder flask by James Dixon, wad-cutter and three piece cleaning rod. Trade label is original and rare second earliest version. Walnut stock is excellent with normal handling marks showing evidence under barrels of strengthening under breech from time of percussion conversion. Engraving overall is crisp except for underneath trigger guard and tang of butt. Case has a replaced lock and escutcheon otherwise very original and in good condition.
The Viscount's Coronet (title of Viscount Hamilton created 24 August 1786) combined with the Hamilton Crest show that the original owner of this sporting gun was one of Joseph Manton's earliest customers, John James Hamilton, 1st Marquess of Abercorn KG, PC (Ire) (July 1756 – 27 January 1818) an " admirable nobleman who always went out shooting in his Blue Ribbon (KG - Order of the Garter)" - quote from G W E Russell. A pair of single barrel duelling pistols from 1791 serial number 305 also bear the same Viscounts Coronet and the Hamilton Crest. See 'The Manton Supplement' by W Keith Neal & D H L Back, pages 186 and 215.
Notes: We have seen the initials J.P. on barrels of several percussion conversions of Joseph Manton's sporting guns along with other pistols by Joseph Manton which had further work circa 1815-1825 (such as under the barrels on conversion from duelling to officers pistols with captive ramrods) by which time James Purdey had left the employ of Joseph Manton and set up on his own in 1814. We have been unable to find documented evidence that the JP initials are definitely James Purdey but at least two of the other JP markings on conversions have carried this highly plausible theory including the officers pistols where the JP initials 'font' has the stylised J and P - interestingly those pistols were still in flintlock form so there was no conversion requiring a false breech or re-proofing but captive ramrods had been fitted and barrels rifled.
A LIGHT DRAGOON FLINTLOCK PISTOL DATED 1786 WITH HOLSTER
An early dated 1786 Light Dragoon Flintlock Pistol. 15½” overall, 16 bore 9” round barrel with proof marks, border engraved flat lockplate signed Tower on tail and Crown over GR, border engraved cock, regulation furniture including lobed butt cap, brass trigger guard, side plate and ramrod pipe. Original ramrod. Stock with marking of Crown over entwined GR and 1786. Also stock makers mark of IW to side plate and an inspectors crown mark near trigger guard. Period leather dragoons holster.
Pan is pitted otherwise very good metalwork. Excellent lock. Stock with old fore end spliced repair and normal handling marks. Holster in very good unrestored worn condition.
A RARE AND ORIGINAL 19TH CENTURY SCOTTISH HIGHLAND DRESS GARNITURE OF CLAN CHIEF CAMERON OF LOCHEIL, INCLUDING A PAIR OF RAMS HORN PERCUSSION DRESS PISTOLS, AN OFFICERS BASKET HILT SWORD, DIRK AND ACCESSORIES
This rare garniture comprises of;-
A pair of Nickel Silver stocked Percussion Rams Horn belt pistols, with thistles and foliage engraved locks, stock engraved with matching thistles and foliage, 7" blued two stage octagonal to part round part multi sided barrels of 38 bore with Birmingham Proofs and barrels consecutively numbered 39 and 40, matching engraved hammer with platinum breech plug, belt hooks to side. Thistle shaped triggers with nickel silver thistle prickers to Rams Horn butt. Pistols are unsigned. 11.5" overall length.
A regulation Scottish Military Basket Hilted Broadsword with 80cm double-fullered blade, etched with flowing thistles and crowned GR regulation steel hilt with wire bound fish skin grip, contained in its steel mounted scabbard with two suspension rings. A leather sword cross belt with silver buckles engraved to match sporran and dress belt and further buckle with Scottish crest and arms 'Nemo Me Impune Lacessit' - the national motto of the Kingdom of Scotland. A large horn powder-flask with ornate thistle and game cast mounts, large cairngorm and chain link sling. A silver mounted white horse hair sporran with two silver mounted black tassels, the silver foliage engraved with central Cameron crest of a dexter arm in armour embowed brandishing a sword. A leather dress belt with silver buckle engraved to match sporran with same Cameron dexter arm crest. A silver mounted Highland dirk of characteristic form with 11.5" blade, knife and fork all with stag horn grips. Foliate engraving and Cameron dexter arm crest to match other silver mounts with inlaid cairngorms to dirk, knife and fork. Original scabbard.
A complete good quality Highland dress (less shoes but including silver shoe buckles with matching engraving and socks) in Cameron of Locheil Tartan including kilt: dark wool and silk dark braid and gold trimmed jacket/doublet with 34 silver diamond shaped buttons embossed with figure in highland dress to jacket tails, braided front and sleeve cuffs: red silk waistcoat with gold trim and thistle diamond buttons: full dress length shoulder plaid with silver plaid brooch mounted with a cairngorm: Glengarry with Cameron dexter arm dress badge and chiefs eagles feather (also antique).
Pistols retain nearly 50% original bluing to barrels and locks. All the silver has a dark patina and has been left uncleaned. Wear to jacket and waistcoat with faded gold trim but all commensurate with age and extensive original use. Sword has been polished bright and in our opinion may be the only replacement item in this garniture.
Overall an original good quality garniture of a Clan Chief which displays well as a centrepiece to any Scottish collection of weapons.
FLINTLOCK 60 BORE BOXLOCK POCKET PISTOL
Flintlock boxlock 60 bore pocket pistol by George Higham of Warrington circa 1810. Line engraved lock signed Higham on left and Warrington on right. Sliding safety, sprung frizzen. Barrel 2.25" long. Measures 7.2" overall length. Frame with clear proof marks. Walnut slab sided stock.
A sleeper with no restoration. All metalwork has a smooth patina. Mechanically sound. Small dings to stock but no splits and very minor shrinkage.
AN ORDNANCE CONTRACT ENFIELD PATTERN TWO BAND ARTILLERY CARBINE BY THOMAS TURNER ISSUED TO THE VICTORIA PERMANENT ARTILLERY (AUSTRALIA)
A fine condition Enfield Pattern .577 regulation calibre Artillery Carbine by Thomas Turner of Fisher Street, Birmingham, circa 1860-1870. This 3 groove rifle undoubtedly started life as a three band Enfield pattern ordered by the Ordnance and subsequently issued to the Victoria Permanent Artillery in Australia (VPA on butt tang). The VPA were established when the British Army left the colony of Victoria in 1870, formed mainly as a Volunteer force by Melbourne residents to combat the possible threat from one of the other colonial nations of France, Germany or Russia after the British Army left. Russian aspirations in the Pacific were a particular local worry.
Like many long rifles it was probably damaged near the muzzle at some stage during its working life as proven by the clear unserviceable 'S' stamp punched over one of the barrel proof marks. With a fine bore and excellent condition otherwise, it was shortened at some stage to a two band 24" barrel artillery specification carbine retaining the mix of components of the long rifle such as the earlier forward projecting rib on the bayonet bar but with the later style foresight blade and second pattern ramrod. Sold out of service as per the barrel marks, subsequent history is not known.
Stock in excellent condition with no splits and very little bruising and minor handling marks. Good profiles around lock and sideplate. Brass furniture excellent mellow condition. Lock excellent both inside and out. Bore is sharp and near mint and would improve to mint with a clean. Barrel externally very good with some pitting as befits age and use with very clear markings. The barrel has clear proofs (with one overstamped as already mentioned) and numerous Ordnance inspectors marks. Likewise the lock internals have clear Ordnance inspectors marks. Ladder rear sight. The plain lock is in excellent condition with clear Thomas Turner, Fisher Street, Birmingham markings. Regulation brass furniture with front and rear slings fitted. Overall fine condition for age.
Thomas Turner was an excellent and innovative gunmaker. As proven by this quality rifle, he was one of the contractors to the War Department as well as being one of the founder members of the Birmingham Small Arms Trade organisation (BSA) and supplier of thousands of Enfield pattern rifles to the USA during the American Civil War.
A BRASS BARRELLED FLINTLOCK BLUNDERBUSS CIRCA 1797 MARKED DUBLIN CASTLE WITH SPRING BAYONET
A late 18th century brass barrelled flintlock blunderbuss with spring bayonet. Two stage brass octagon to round bell mouth barrel 14.5” long with banded intersection, top flat engraved “Dublin Castle” with 12½” top spring bayonet released by a thumb catch on the breech tang (action requires new spring). Border engraved stepped lockplate with flat swan neck cock, roller frizzen, lockplate signed “DENNING”. Strong working action with all original parts. Walnut fullstock with slight damage to stock and tang around mounting screw. Brass mounts, including flower engraved trigger guard with acorn finial, engraved butt plate tang, ramrod pipes and side nail cups. Original horn tipped ramrod with iron worm. Overall length 30.5".
Henry Denning is recorded in Heer Der Neue Stockel as working in Sherborne Dorset circa 1797. Whilst it is possible that is was made in Dorset for Dublin Castle, the characteristics of this blunderbuss indicate a slightly earlier date so it may well be that Henry Denning worked in Ireland before moving to Sherborne. There is a link between a Henry Denning and Earl Digby of Sherborne Castle as a local Henry Denning metalworker is known to have completed iron gates at the castle circa 1789-1790. Edward Digby 2nd Earl Digby was also Baron Digby of Ireland 1793-1856 preceded by his brother Henry Digby. The other explanation is that the engraving may be spurious but it looks period.
SHOOTING PRIZE PRESENTATION SURREY YEOMANRY CAVALRY OFFICERS PERCUSSION PISTOL BY GAMESON OF LONDON DATED 1842
A very good quality Cavalry Officers pistol by Gameson of London dated 1842. Heavy octagonal damascus twist carbine bore .650 barrel, 8" long. Front blade sight with V notched rear sight. Platinum line to breech. Engraved breech and tang matching lockplate. Captive swivel ramrod. Barrel marked GAMESON LONDON towards breech on top flat. Barrel engraving towards muzzle on top flat reads PRESENTED TO THE BEST SHOT OF THE SURREY YEOMANRY CAVALRY JUNE 1842 BY LIEUT COL THE EARL OF LOVELACE. 'Best Shot' in the regiment shooting prizes are usually rifles. It may well be that this rare cavalry officers presentation pistol was a prize for pistol shooting mounted. A very rare example of a shooting prize.
All original quality lock with engraved Dolphin hammer, matching scroll engraving to lockplate which is marked GAMESON. Silver barrel bolt escutcheons. Walnut stock with finely chequered grip. Silver escutcheon with crest of demi lion couped (unresearched). 13.75 " overall length. A real untouched sleeper. Walnut stock with original varnish has no cracks but does have normal handling marks. Good profiles around lock and reverse side. Crisp grip chequering. Wood to metal fit excellent. Even dark grey patina to all metal parts. Good lock action. Barrel has never been touched so heavy Damascus twist has etched pattern into barrel.
The Surrey Yeomanry Cavalry was raised in 1794, but disbanded in 1828. A Southwark Troop was raised in 1831 and became a full Regiment in the same year. That too was disbanded in 1848. Lieut Col The Earl of Lovelace (see engraving) was the Commanding Officer of the Surrey Yeomanry Cavalry in 1842. William King, Earl of Lovelace, was originally eighth Baron King of Ockham (1805-1893). He was created Earl of Lovelace in 1838. On 8 July 1835 he married Lord Byrons only daughter, the exceptionally gifted Ada Lovelace. She was a mathematician best known for incisive notes and comments on her close friend Charles Babbages analytical engine. The family seat of the Earl of Lovelace was at Ockham Park, but he acquired East Horsley Park, in East Horsley, a few miles to the south, in 1840. Lovelace spent thirty years transforming the building into a Rhenish Gothic castle. It was renamed Horsley Towers after he added an extraordinary tower in 1858. The building still stands at the south end of Ockham Road South. Lovelace pioneered the use of wood formed after being steamed - he reported this to the Institution of Civil Engineers and Isambard Kingdom Brunel expressed approval of Lovelace's Great Hall built in 1847 using bent beams. He had excellent bricks made and won the medal for brickmaking at the Great Exhibition of 1851. Lovelace was Lord Lieutenant of Surrey in 1840, FRS in 1841 and FICE. Lovelace rebuilt a number of buildings in the village and elsewhere in his characteristic style. He also built a number of characteristic horseshoe shaped bridges for transporting timber. Lovelace attended nearby St. Martin's Church, where he is buried in a mausoleum he had built some 20 years previously in the NE corner of the churchyard. In 1919-1926, Horsley Towers was bought by T. O. M. Sopwith, the yacht and aircraft designer.
Please note: For UK buyers only the price includes a hand coloured original woodcut engraving from The Illustrated London News dated 17 June 1854 depicting the Inspection of the Second Royal Surrey Militia at Guildford Friday 2 june 1854 Commanded by their 'noble Colonel The Earl of Lovelace. This was the re-established regiment in 1852 following disbandment of the Surrey Yeomanry Cavalry in 1848
FLINTLOCK BOXLOCK 40 BORE POCKET PISTOL BY OATES OF WORCESTER
A very good quality flintlock boxlock 40 bore pocket pistol by Oates of Worcester circa 1790. Engraved lock with stand of arms on either side around an oval signed Oates and Worcester. Sliding safety (minor damage) which also intercepts frizzen, line engraved flintcock and frizzen, line engraved top jaw, sprung frizzen, starburst engraving to tang. Hidden drop down trigger. Excellent strong action. 1.5” barrel engraved at muzzle. Frame with clear London proof marks. Nicely grained Walnut slab sided stock in excellent condition with no splits and virtually no shrinkage. Silver shield escutcheon to stock. Overall length 6.1”.
Oates is not recorded as a gunmaker in Worcester so this is a rare survivor but the London proofs may indicate a family connection with Benjamin Oates of London, gunmaker circa 1761-1780.
CASED SHOTGUN BY WILLIAM SMITH S/N 2583 FOR 1818 OWNED BY SIR THOMAS HANBURY - FLINTLOCK CONVERTED TO TUBE LOCK BY CHARLES MOORE
A fine cased 20 bore double barrel shotgun by William Smith of London serial number 2583 for June 1818 converted from flintlock to tubelock by Charles Moore of London circa 1825. 28" barrels with flat central rib signed in gold W SMITH, LONDON with tube lock platinum lined touch hole breech fitted by Charles Moore engraved with central starburst and platinum poincons signed C MOORE, LONDON, PATENT. Original brass tipped ramrod with captive worm. Border engraved locks with fine foliate engraving signed C Moore, London. Stock with finely checkered wrist, barrel channel with feint matching serial number of 2583 and stock makers stamp of EA. Escutcheon on wrist of stock with initials and crest of Sir Thomas Hanbury. Matching engraved furniture including tang and trigger guard with double triggers. In original William Smith case with excellent condition typical blue Smith lining and very good original Smith of Leicester Square label - one of the best labels of the period. Case with fitted contents including 3 piece cleaning rod, working Hawksley Stag and Leaves flask, Sykes patent shot belt with Irish charger, powder measure, tin containing very rare tubes for lock under lockplate compartment and a patent collapsible gilt stirrup cup in matching blue velvet lined watch style case. Case has a compartment lid marked Mr Smith 26th June 1818.
Fine barrels with good original colour, excellent bores and gold inlaid makers signature with no gold losses. Sharp engraving to lockplates and furniture. Excellent stock with some handling marks but fine condition with sharp checkering. Case lining original with some period modification when converted to tube lock. Flask has no significant dents, tubes in excellent condition. Gilding in stirrup cup faded but would clean to fine condition.
This a beautifully balanced rare high quality Charles Moore tube lock conversion of a William Smith flintlock probably originally owned by a member of the Hanbury family who passed it down to Thomas Hanbury 1832-1907, later knighted and amongst other claims to fame, donated the 60 acre gardens at Wisley to the Royal Horticultural Society in 1903. Hanbury made his fortune in China buying up large tracts of land in China from 1853 onwards and became the largest property owner in Shanghai. His shooting exploits are covered in his published letters see page 102 and pages 104-105. A biography of his interesting life, La Mortola, also mentions that 'Thomas was a keen shot and spent many hours roaming Common (Clapham) with a gun shooting rabbits'.
A FINE 100-BORE 'FLINTLOCK' SPORTING AIR GUN BY EDWARD BATE, LONDON, CIRCA 1775
Fine and Rare Silver Mounted 18th Century Ball Reservoir Lightweight "Flintlock" Air Gun with Skeleton Stock by Edward Bate of London (1743-1810). With hallmarked silver mounts of "IK", John King, London silversmith with date letter of 1775. Hexagonal to round blued barrel with much original blue remaining, hexagonal for first 12" with crisp edges, overall barrel length 24.25" of 100 bore with notched rear sight and silver bead front sight (top of bead missing). BATE LONDON inlaid in silver on top flat of barrel with silver inlaid flowers/foliage to breech and foliage engraved tang. Barrel retained by two iron barrel bolts - forward one missing. Horn tipped ramrod. Original brass/copper ball reservoir (with age patina and some dents) screws into barrel under leading edge of lockplate.
The stepped lockplate is signed "BATE" with elaborate engraved scrollwork that incorporates a gun buttstock and hound below the pan and a caduceus and orb at the tail, the orb possibly representing a globe with lines of latitude and longitude. Flintlock mechanism with strong traces of original colour to lockplate, frizzen and frizzen spring in very fine condition. Silver furniture comprises finely engraved hallmarked triggerguard incorporating housing for ball reservoir, silver lattice hallmarked buttplate, silver rosette side nail cups, front and rear ramrod pipes and a silver escutcheon on shoulder of stock with intertwining rop border around the escutcheon. The silver furniture with mainly floral engraving, scrolls and decorative borders. Finely figured Walnut stock has a skeleton butt with engraved pierced lattice buttplate and a raised carved rococo shell and scroll pattern at the apron/tang that is similar to those seen on other Bate air guns. Stock has had minimal repairs and is in excellent restored condition.
The Flintlock mechanism is used to discharge the weapon once the ball reservoir is pumped with sufficient air pressure which, from experience, needs to be pumped up to 2,000 times to enable around a dozen shots without re-pressurizing. An amazingly engineered air gun for its time. All air guns by Bate are rare - silver mounted air guns by Bate are extremely rare and this beautiful lightweight example is amongst the best.
Edward Bate (1743-1810) was a quality gunmaker active in Brownlow Street, Long Acre, London for the period 1763-1778, Contractor to the Ordnance 1779--83. He is noted for his fine airguns including some with similar distinctive skeleton stocks. One such gun by Bate but with iron mounts was previously in the W. Keith Neal Collection - see below.
For similar skeleton stocked example of Bate's Air Guns see:
Christies London, Sale 8934 - FINE ANTIQUE FIREARMS FROM THE W. KEITH NEAL COLLECTION, 9 November 2000, Lot 23 - A Fine 44-Bore 'Flintlock' Sporting Air Gun by Edward Bate, London circa 1775. (some damages and repairs including barrel bolt missing, top jaw and screw replaced - all iron mounts). Price realised: £8,225.
For a non skeleton stocked example, again with iron mounts and some damages including stock bruising, fore end chipped and cracked - Christies London, Sale 6542, FINE ANTIQUE FIREARMS FROM THE W KEITH NEAL COLLECTION, 25 October 2001, Lot 26 - A 120-Bore 'Flintlock' Sporting Air Rifle by Edward Bate London Circa 1770. Price realised: £5,640.
GOOD QUALITY BRITISH MILITARY FLINTLOCK LIGHT DRAGOON PISTOL BY BRANDER & POTTS
A scarce Light Dragoon Officers Private Purchase Flintlock Pistol by Brander & Potts of regulation pattern with 9" musket bore (.75) barrel and regulation brass furniture. No visible proofs to top of barrel but may be underneath as barrel has same patina as other furniture. Walnut full stock, old very neat repair to rear of lock and some cracks to left fore end. Excellent lock is well stamped BRANDER & POTTS and 70 MINORIES, LONDON with throat hole flintcock and excellent working action. Steel ramrod. Brander & Potts operated from 70 The Minories, London between 1802-1827. This type of heavy calibre Brown Bess musket bore flintlock pistol was carried by British and Colonial military officers during the Napoleonic era and beyond.
FINE LATE 17TH/EARLY 18TH CENTURY SILVER MOUNTED SCOTTISH DIRK
From a collection of Scottish Dirks that included a dated dirk illustrated in James Drummond’s series of watercolours: “Ancient Scottish Weapons” is this good quality late 17th/ early 18th century silver topped dirk with a bog oak grip. This grip has a rich, dark patina with the early four bands style of Celtic interlace ropework carving similar to the example in the Royal Museum of Scotland, item 8 page, 10 of "The Scottish Dirk" by James Forman (that illustrated dirk is dated late 17th century). The final band of carving with haunches evolved from the earlier type of balloch knife. The underside of the pommel is decorated with ten folded rope ribs and the silver top disc/pommel cap is fixed onto the grip by a similar number of silver claws. The tang is secured by a silver mount around the iron button. The 11.5" blade is a cut down sword blade. Overall length 15".
A very rare variant with the silver pommel top disc of this early type of dirk.
BROWN BESS MUSKET PATTERN 1793 (INDIA PATTERN TYPE 2) WITH REGIMENTAL MARKINGS
A good original and rare variation of the Pattern 1793 (India Pattern Type 2) Flintlock Brown Bess with Regulation and Swedish Inspection markings. 39” sighted barrel of.75" bore with King’s Proofs. Stock with Swedish Government regimental unit mark of 4) M1293. Matching marks to barrel, stock and butt cap. Border engraved lock plate, engraved ‘Tower’ on the tail and Crown ‘GR’ with Ordnance Inspector’s crown mark and arrow below the pan. India Pattern Type 2 post 1809 throat hole cock, regulation India Pattern brass furniture comprising butt plate, trigger guard, side plate and 3 ramrod pipes, fore-end cap, swivels and period replacement iron ramrod.
This is part of a consignment of muskets supplied to Sweden after 1809 to assist them during their war with Denmark. It is probable that part of the consignment was made up of parts available at the Tower and shipped to Sweden where they were stocked locally. The stock markings etc match the barrel and other furniture so the stock is period. A rare Brown Bess variant.
Very good lock and barrel with much original finish. Stock has handling marks and an old split repair forward of the sideplate but good honest condition. Original trigger guard has old split in brass but is tight in place. All other original regulation furniture in good condition. Matching overall patina.
A FINE QUALITY RIGBY PERCUSSION 30 BORE TRAVELLING PISTOL WITH SWIVEL RAMROD AND MAGAZINE TRAP BUTT CIRCA 1843
A fine quality Irish percussion 30 bore travelling pistol by W & J Rigby of Dublin made circa 1843.. Heavy damascus twist barrel and rib signed Dublin on top flat with Irish Firearms Act of 1843 Registration mark. Captive swivel ramrod. Figured walnut finely chequered stock with vacant silver escutcheon under butt. Finely engraved action signed W & J Rigby with platinum breech plug. The Rigby action has the usual three bents. Steel shoulderstrap lifts by means of a latch to reveal a magazine containing two balls and percussion caps. Measures 6.25" overall.
A nearly identical example of this pistol is illustrated in ‘Great Irish Gunmakers, Messrs RIGBY, 1760-1869‘ by D.H.L Back, Page 99, Plate 35.
Sleeper in very good condition. Mechanically sound. Minor stock chequering wear but no stock shrinkage.
A UNIQUE CASED COLT MODEL 1851 NAVY REVOLVER WITH TWO CYLINDERS, 36 CALIBRE, S/N 28969 MANUFACTURED IN 1853
The casing for this revolver is old - just how old is debateable. It could well be period or slightly later. Unusually it is fitted out for a left handed person. Included in the casing are two cylinders which both fit the revolver even though one is the original cylinder which has blown apart and from the patina, probably in period. Bullet mould is not a marked Colts Patent but period. Powder flask is a later addition. All matching numbers including excellent wedge. Matching number on period replacement cylinder which has been superbly etched with cylinder scene. Hand cut grips probably done in period as cutting has overlapped nickel silver of backstrap in places which shows age.
Very good overall condition. Barrel is crisp with approximately 30-40% original blue. Excellent bore. Rammer has strong case colours remaining. Frame also has good case colours. Mechanically sound. Near 100% cylinder scene on etched replacement cylinder. Blown cylinder has matching number and good scene on remaining part. Around 90% plus original Nickel Silver on backstrap and triggerguard. Strong New York City address on barrel. It is apparent that the blown cylinder blew out of the top of the revolver and did no other damage to the revolver as the frame, barrel etc are in excellent alignment. A unique item for the Colt collector which can be displayed with either the excellent period replacement cylinder or the original blown cylinder which still fits like a glove.
A story came with this gun from the USA that it was owned by a left handed gunfighter. It is tempting to treat such stories with a pinch of salt. It could equally be an American Civil War item. However, the fact is that the casing is a left handed one, the cylinder has blown apart probably from an overloaded hand made cartridge and the grips are hand chequered. Whatever happened, this Colt is certainly a conversation piece.
A FLINTLOCK BOXLOCK 50 BORE POCKET PISTOL BY TWIGG OF LONDON
A good Georgian flintlock boxlock 50 bore pocket pistol by Twigg of London. Engraved frame with flags/arms on either side around an oval signed TWIGG and LONDON. Sliding safety, line engraved flintcock and sprung frizzen. Steel triggerguard engraved with starburst. Excellent strong action, 1.5" turn off steel barrel with proof mark. Frame with matching proof marks under. Walnut slab sided stock in excellent condition. Overall length 6.5".
A GOOD NEW LAND PATTERN FLINTLOCK PISTOL
A good New Land Pattern Flintlock Pistol, circa 1800. 9" regulation bore proofed barrel. Flat border engraved lock engraved with a Crown and marked Tower with contractors initials of RW, Robert Wheeler. Flat border engraved ring necked cock, semi waterproof pan. Walnut fullstock with various markings. Regulation brass mounts. Swivel ramrod.
Stock is very good with a well executed old inset repair during working life between triggerguard and ramrod. Iron furniture and barrel with minor pitting. Brass mounts in very good condition.
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