Flintlock pistol Identification

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mindsimk

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Hello,

I am new in firearms. Could you please help me to identify this pistol. Thank you in advance.

I'll call this pistol #1
Regards,
Mindaugas



 

mindsimk

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Hello,

I am new in firearms. Could you please help me to identify this pistol. Thank you in advance.

I'll call this pistol #2.
Regards,
Mindaugas


 

mindsimk

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Hello,

I am new in firearms. Could you please help me to identify this pistol. Thank you in advance.

I'll call this pistol #3
Regards,
Mindaugas


 

Zonie

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Welcome to the forum.

Beyond saying the pistols were most likely made between 1650 and 1760 I can't add much to their identity.

They were all made for the wealthy noblemen of the time and they appear to be in excellent condition.

In my opinion, they are not newly made in the middle-East for the tourist trade because, I think the quality of the work is too good.

Hopefully one of our other members will be able to tell us more?
 

curator

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Zonie:

Not wishing to contradict your opinion, but based on the "bridled" frizzens a later date might be more accurate. Definitely later than 1760, probably closer to 1780-1800. One of the pistols exhibits a grooved frizzen face which is typically Spanish. Perhaps all of the three are from Spanish Morocco, or North Africa. The wire-work and engraving also appears Arabic or at the least "mediterranean" possibly Turkish. I am certain some of our more knowledgeable collectors will chime in and help our OP out.
 

rdstrain49

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I am a bit suspicious that three such different weapons have nearly identical barrel shrouds. Maybe it's just my suspicious nature, but me thinks replicas, very nice indeed but replicas still. Also, the profile of the Cock (hammer) is identical on all three weapons. Not the engraving, just the hammer. Further #1 has what appear to be machine cut screws.

Keep in mind I don't know much about anything and even less about this.
 
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I'm with rdstrain49 on this one. I believe they are old, possibly Victorian era, replicas. The barrel and lock plate on #2 look to be cast iron with somewhat crude detail cast in. Mediterranean, middle eastern origin.
 

cynthialee

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I think they are very old display guns made from old parts with some newer parts (when they were made to be display pieces.) I see some idiot put a modern screw in one of them at one time.

The barrels of #2 and #3 pistol you notice have scroll work of rather decent quality. But when we compare the inlay work of the stocks it is no where near the level of expertise. I am not sure the stock and the barrel were original to each other. The locks also have a higher quality of detail than what we see on the stocks. And then there is the issue of the glass stones...These are really old poorly treated wall hangers.

The over the barrel end caps are all similar. The same artist put all three together for a single collection maybe. Maybe they worked at one time after the theorized makeover. I doubt it. The barrels and locks look like they may have been serviceable a long time ago.

Or maybe they were made like that from day one, but seeing lower quality stock work on a barrel that is a higher quality doesn't add up for me.

Or they are new fake guns from the Middle East. Those dudes make a lot of fake artifact guns and they are really good at faking aging.

Not an expert or even an apprentice. Just my ruminations on the pistols presented.
 

Wes/Tex

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#1 appears to have actual proof marks on the barrel upper sides while the other two have 'mystery' marks on the barrel tops. Close up pics of these may help determine a possible source.

They look suspiciously like the "Bazaar Guns" from North Africa and the Middle East...you know, the Sultan's Harem Light Horse sort of thing! Guess then they fit in the "Bizarre" category. All seriousness aside, they have all the ear marks of those left overs from the Ottoman Empire, generally a mix of old surplus parts and a vivid imagination.
https://i.pinimg.com/736x/d3/12/2a/d3122a4079eead8fb70e4d30a63e377a--flintlock-pistol-armures.jpg
https://i.pinimg.com/736x/c3/90/c7...8088f798ba1--pistol-tattoos-ottoman-turks.jpg
https://i.pinimg.com/736x/cf/49/d5...62b11e86--flintlock-pistol-ottoman-empire.jpg
 
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Hi Mindaugas. Welcome to the Forum.

The three pistols you posted are what collectors generally define as Ottoman style Kubur (horse) pistols. They remained popular throughout the Ottoman Empire for well over 100 years. Most of the pistols are left unmarked. Which makes them almost impossible to accurately date. And the decoration, which varied from little to extreme, was usually done in a generic fashion so as to appeal to a broad spectrum of potential customers, as well as not upseting any religious sensabilities. Unless made as a pair, I've never seen any two exactly alike. The three pistols posted here were probably made at one of the many gun making centers in the Balkans. Probably during the first half of the 19th Century. These pistols, in flintlock configuration, were used all the way up to the 1880's. Hard to believe. The barrels and locks could have been locally made, or imported from Europe. In fact, the market for these pistols was so large, complete guns would be made and exported from Europe decorated for local tastes. Or the guns exported and decorated locally. There were entire towns and villages employed to make arms under contract to the Ottoman Empire, including a dozen or so Regional gun making centers. If made locally, the barrels would be made in one shop, the locks in another, and the stocks in yet another and decorated by jewlers. Stock, lock, and barrel styling can vary all over the place, and usually do. Any combination of early, middle, and late European styling could be used depending on the builder or customer's taste.
Pistol #1: This is the most common styling you see on these pistols. It "generally" follows the French (and maybe Dutch) pattern of the first half of the 18th Century, with the bridled lock of about the third quarter. Could have been used most anywhere.
Pistol #2 & 3: The "general" stock design on these two follow an Italian design of the same period. The decoration on these two has a bit of Moroccan or Algerian influence.
Again, the demand for these guns was so large, over such a long period of time, that there would be entire arms fairs set up near the coastal shores where European ships could dock for selling and trading arms. Hope this gives you a better idea.
The three pistols posted here are all excellant examples of Ottoman/Balkan gun making.

Rick :hatsoff:
 

mindsimk

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Thank you very much for your comments and opinions. They helped me so much.
 
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Hi William

Most of these pistols have what we call a "false" ramrod. Either a short piece of wood rod, not equaling the length of the barrel, or simply a moulding in that area to give the impression of a ramrod. In either case it's simply a styling exercise in an attempt to copy the European pistols.
They preferred to load their pistols using a seperate metal rod called a Suma. This would be suspended around the neck with a leather throng for easy accessability. Here is a pic of a very early Suma rod.

Rick :hatsoff:
 
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Glad I could be of some assistance.
One other bit of interest. Another reason these pistols are usually un-marked is so they could not be traced back to the maker's shop, as the pistols were sold to both friend and foe alike. :haha:

Rick
 

rdstrain49

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Ricky, I normally wouldn't give 2 cents for this kind of stuff, but your explanation makes this a fascinating topic. Thank you.
 

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