The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Wheel-lock rifle or 'Tschinke' with ramrod
  • Wheel-lock rifle or 'Tschinke' with ramrod
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • Teschen, Silesia, East Europe
  • c. 1630
  • Steel, gold, walnut, antler, and wood, chiselled, gilded and engraved
  • Length: 116.8 cm, overall
    Length: 89 cm, barrel
    Width: 0.9 cm, calibre
    Weight: 2.74 kg
  • A1105
  • European Armoury III
Commentary
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Wheel-lock rifle or Tschinke, with an octagonal barrel chiselled in low relief for its entire length with a formal design of vases on a gilt ground. Rifling of eight grooves.

    Lock with external wheel and mainspring. There is a release button for the pan-cover spring and a button cocking-lever characteristic of these locks. A plate covers the spring of the cock, and a similar plate the hind end of the mainspring. These are engraved with a mask and scrollwork, respectively, while the flat surface of the cock, which carries a short cocking spur, is chiselled with a marine monster gilt. The lock-plate is entirely gilt.

    Walnut stock of the form usual on Tschinkes, inlaid with birds, animals and grotesque figures of engraved antler with circular plaques of mother-of-pearl at intervals. On the cheek-piece of the butt is a representation of St. George and the Dragon. An oval plaque of mother-of-pearl on the butt is engraved with a coat of arms (a hound leaping above a star and crescent, with crest of a hound upon the mantled helm). The heel-plate of antler engraved with a mounted figure of a king is a restoration. There is a butt-trap with sliding cover.

    Trigger-guard indented for the fingers and partly chiselled with acanthus ornament, gilt.

    Silesia (Teschen), about 1630.

    This type of light wheel-lock gun was common in the north of Germany and the Baltic provinces. They are known in German as Tschinke or Teschings, and became popular early in the 17th century for bustard and black game shooting. The decoration of these guns is usually of a standard pattern, in this instance that on the metal parts is of a better quality than usual. A representation of St. George is frequently found on the cheek-piece of the stock. There are many Tschinkes in the K. Livrustkammer at Stockholm, and the Musée de l' Armée, Paris. Other Tschinkes in this collection are A1106-7.
    Compare the decoration of A1092 and 1097, and the powder-flask, A1288.

    V. Karger; 'Neue Teschner Beiträge zur Herkunftsfrage der Teschinken', Waffen- und Kostümkunde, 1964, pp. 29-42; Peterson, Encyclopaedia of Firearms, 1964, illus. on p. 351; Blackmore, Guns and Rifles of the World, 1965, fig. 88. Rifles of this sort were made in the town of Teschen in Silesia, now divided between Poland and Czechoslovakia, the two parts being called respectively Cieszyn and Gesky Tesin. The alternative names given to these guns in German, Tschinke and Teschings, both come from the town name. Rifles of this sort were intended mainly for shooting black-cock at the lek (on the display ground), or bustard and woodcock at rest. J. F. Hayward examined A1105 on a number of occasions and concluded that the chiselling of the barrel was 19th-century, as probably was that of the lock.