A Highly Unusual 42-Bore Flintlock Horseman's Pistol

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Lot 236
A Highly Unusual 42-Bore Flintlock Horseman's Pistol
The Barrel, Lock, And Some Of The Mounts By Harman Barne, Circa 1660, The Remainder By Stephen Wells

Sold for £ 12,500 (US$ 16,961) inc. premium
A Highly Unusual 42-Bore Flintlock Horseman's Pistol
The Barrel, Lock, And Some Of The Mounts By Harman Barne, Circa 1660, The Remainder By Stephen Wells
With long tapering three-stage barrel with pronounced ring at the muzzle carrying a bead fore-sight, octagonal breech becoming polygonal, engraved with foliage at each end and signed 'H. Barne' along the top flat, plain tang, signed border engraved rounded lock, moulded figured full stock with raised apron around the barrel tang, iron mounts comprising flat side-plate finely pierced and engraved with scrolling foliage involving demi-figures and a monster-head, one of the figures aiming a gun, border engraved globose pommel decorated with a foliated scroll on each side and pierced for an attachable shoulder-stock, trigger-guard with rounded finial, turned and engraved ramrod-pipes, tapering iron belt-hook, and iron-capped ramrod, London proof marks
61 cm. barrel, 74.5 cm. overall

Footnotes

  • Provenance:
    The Barons Leigh, Stoneleigh Abbey, Warwickshire
    W. Keith Neal Collection, P171
    Christie's London, Fine Antique Firearms from the W. Keith Neal Collection, 25 October 2001, lot 229

    Literature:
    W. Keith Neal and D.H.L. Back, Great British Gunmakers 1540-1740, 1984, pp.116-7, pls. 28a-d

    Stephen Wells was apprenticed to Harman Barne, gunmaker to Prince Rupert and King Charles II, and free of the Gunmakers' Company in 1673. Neal and Back suggest that the pistol was incomplete at the time of Barne's death in 1661
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A Highly Unusual 42-Bore Flintlock Horseman's Pistol
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