The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Flint-lock pistol with ramrod
  • Flint-lock pistol with ramrod
  • Gironimo Mutto (c. 1650 - c. 1700) , (barrel)
  • Stephano Scioli (*1633 - c. 1720), (lock)
  • Brescia, Italy
  • c. 1670
  • Steel, engraved and chiselled
  • Length: 48.2 cm, overall
    Length: 31.7 cm, barrel
    Width: 1.4 cm, calibre
    Weight: 1.145 kg
  • Inscription: 'GIRONIMO MUTTO'
    Inscription: 'STEFANO SIOLI'
    Inscription: 'Stefano Sioli Ft.'
  • A1228
  • European Armoury III
Commentary
History
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Flint-lock pistol, a pair with A1227. Barrel octagonal at the breech, changing to sixteen-sided, the remainder round, lightly engraved at the breech with flowers and inscribed on the top plane:

    GIRONIMO MVTTO

    The breech-strap is concealed beneath the stock and to it is pivoted the trigger.

    Lock, chiselled with acanthus foliage on the rear end of the lock-plate, breast of the cock and upper jaw, and back of the steel and pan. Lock-plate engraved:

    STEFANO SIOLI

    The pin securing the cock is fastened inside the lock. In both pistols a small finial is missing form the spring of the steel or frizzen.

    Stock entirely of steel, the shape conforming to that of a normal, wooden stock. It is engraved all over with running foliage, and at the ramrod socket and behind the breech-strap it is further ornamented with foliation in relief, the decoration encloses at the latter point a small cartouche inscribed:

    Stefano Sioli Ft.

    The butt-cap is similarly ornamented and is capped with a circular medallion chiselled in relief with a female bust in profile. The screw-plate takes the form of an applied ornament of openwork foliage, and similar decoration is applied underneath the stock on either side of the trigger-guard. Steel ramrod.

    Italian (Brescian), about 1670.

    Geronimo Mutto was among the barrel-makers working at Gardone, near Brescia, in the second half of the 17th century. There is a pair of flint-lock pistols, with the barrels signed by him and the locks by Cioli (sic) in the Musée de l' Armée at Paris (no. M 1723). There is a pair of wheel-lock pistols by him in the collection of Cav. L. Marzoli, which are probably identical with a pair in the Erbach Collection, sold Fischer, Lucerne, Sept., 1932, lot 30. He also signed the barrel of a gun sold by Heberle, Cologne, 1893, with flint-lock by Filippo Moretti of Brescia. Angelucci attributes to him the initials G.M. on the barrels of a pair of flint-lock pistols at Turin (N 65-6) with locks by Filippo Marchetti of Brescia.

    Stefano Sioli, Cioli or Scioli, of Brescia, signed the locks of a pair of flint-lock pistols with barrels by G. B. Francino, in this Collection (A1229-30 below); also the flint-locks of the pair of pistols with barrels by Geronimo Mutto in the Musée de l' Armée (M 1723), the stocks also being by Sioli; the stocks and locks are signed ‘Stefano Cioli’ and ‘Cioli in Br’ respectively. A pair of similar pistols with locks signed by him are in the Army Museum at Warsaw (MW 6145), and another pair of the same type were in the August Riecher sale, Helbing, Augsburg, 1894. Sioli seems to have specialized in weapons with metal stocks. There is a gun, the barrel by Girolamo Mutti, and the engraved steel stock by Stefano Scioli (sic), in the Royal Armouries, formerly the property of Major H. B. C. Pollard. Another with a brass stock was formerly in the collection of Mr. W. G. Renwick.

    The breech stands on a steel pillar screwed to the base of the stock in front of the trigger-guard. The lock is without bridles inside or out. The trigger hangs from the tang, through which the rear screw of the lock passes.

    Provenance: a pair of pistols fitting A1227-8 in their description was in the sale of the Chateau de S***, Hotel Drouot, Paris, 27 May 1869, lot 23: 'Les batteries à pierre ainsi que les montures portent le nom Stefano Sioli, et les canons GARONIMO MUTTO'. Gaibi, Armi da fuoco, 1962, p. 128, pI. 147A; Hayward, Art of the Gunmaker, II, 1963, p. 337, pI. 49a; Gaibi, Armi da fuoco, 1978, fig. 422; Boccia, Rossi & Morin, Armi e armature Lombarde, 1980, pI. 337b, wrongly captioned as 337c. A. Gaibi (loc. cit., 1962) gave the dates of Mutto as about 1650-1700, and of Scioli as about 1660-1720. In 1978 he gave the latter's dates as born 1633, and still documented in 1685 (op. cit., p. 258). Schedelmann (1972, p. 218), gives a list of other works by Geronimo Mutti. This is the form of the name he sometimes used in a rectangular crowned mark in Spanish style. He dates him about 1720. Some of these may be by later members of the family. Other pistols by Scioli with barrels by G: B. Francino are in the Hermitage Museum, Leningrad (Z. 0. nos. 133 and 5972; Tarassuk, 1972, nos. 183-4), and in the Museo Civico, Bologna. Another pair of all-steel pistols by Scioli are at Slott Örbyhus, Sweden (Seitz, Feuerwaffen, II, fig. 112). The barrel of the pistol in the Victoria and Albert Museum, cited in the 1962 Catalogue, is by Giovanni Battista Francino (Blair, 1968, fig. 224). The Royal Armouries gun cited in the 1962 Catalogue is no. XII. 1752 (see the exhibition catalogue Treasures of the Tower, 1982, cat. no. 68, illus.). The gun in the Renwick collection was sold at Sotheby's, 19 March 1974, lot 38, repr in cat. A pair of pistols signed by S. Sioli and G. Mutto from the armoury of Peter the Great is in the Moscow Kremlin (Weapons of the Petrine period shown in the Moscow Kremlin, 1983, nos. 46-7).

    A1228 only differs from its companion weapon in the decoration of the breast of the cock, which appears to date from the 18th century.