The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Wheel-lock pistol with ramrod
  • Wheel-lock pistol with ramrod
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • Germany, possibly Brunswick
  • c. 1580
  • Steel, gold, silver, antler, copper and wood, overlaid, blued, engraved, embossed and gilded
  • Length: 50.8 cm, overall
    Length: 28.2 cm, barrel
    Width: 1.4 cm, calibre
    Weight: 1.82 kg
  • A1142
  • European Armoury III
Commentary
Further Reading
  • Wheel-lock pistol, the barrel octagonal at the breech and expanding slightly at the muzzle, overlaid with arabesques in gold and silver, the ground formerly blued.

    Lock with external wheel enclosed in a dome-shaped steel cover. This, together with the whole surface of the lock-plate, is overlaid with gold and silver arabesques, the flat surface of the cock is engraved with a monster and a human face. The release button for the pan-cover spring and the lever of the safety-catch are missing.

    Stock profusely inlaid with engraved antler, the decoration including hares and hounds, lions' masks, lions, and on the nearside a representation of Leda and the Swan.

    The globular butt is capped with a lion's mask of copper, embossed and gilt. This is pierced with two holes which probably once held a ring.

    Wooden ramrod tipped with antler.

    German, about 1580.

    This piece closely resembles A1143, and but for the minor differences they might be regarded as a pair. The antler to the rear of the lockplate is a replacement.

    The mechanism of the lock resembles in some features the type recently ascribed to Brunswick, for instance the internal bridge for the inner end of the axle-tree shaped like an inverted letter U (W. Glage, 1983, fig. 45). Glage, in fact, considers A1142 to be of Brunswick manufacture (personal communication, 1983).