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18th century, displaying the long elegant proportions of the horse pistols of the period, Ottoman and Italian. The pistols of this period were nearly identical as the Turks based theirs on the Italian model and often incorporated Italian locks and sometimes barrels. This example dates to the mid-century and incorporates the Italian features neglected on later examples, including the sight flat to the barrel top, flared muzzle and iron furniture. Barrel length, 13 ¼”. The walnut stock has a long elegant wrist, shortened and thickened on later examples as it was prone to cracking though this example survives without that defect. The top of the wrist had an escutcheon, long lost in battle and smoothed over from use. The mounts include iron ramrod tubes with a dummy ramrod, as the Turks used a separated rod attached to the priming flask. That was superior to the European process as the ramrod did not need to be threaded back into the gun stock mounts, after loading, which took a few seconds which, in battle, could mean the difference between life and death. Neither, of course, could it be pocketed or otherwise stowed, as, if it was lost, the gun was useless. And, pistols were used on horseback, where a lot was going on! In all, a lovely 18th century Ottoman horseman’s pistol with strong Italian influence.

Stock Number: FNS8464

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