François Pirmet (French, Paris, recorded 1779–1818)
Jean Le Clerc (French, Paris, recorded 1807–10)
Steel, wood (walnut), silver, gold
L. 48 in. (121.9 cm); L. of barrel 32 1/2 in. (82.6 cm); L. of lock 5 1/4 in. (13.3 cm); Cal. .59 in. (15.1 mm); Wt. 6 lb. 10 oz. (3000 g)
Rogers Fund, 1927
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 375
Pirmet was gunmaker to Jérôme Bonaparte (1784–1860), Napoleon's brother, who ruled as king of Westphalia from 1807 to 1813.
Signature: Signed twice on the lock in script: Pirmet à Paris 1809 (Pirmet in Paris, 1809).
Inscription: Inscribed on the barrel in script: W (for the recipient) and N (for Napoleon);
On the ram-rod: ILC (probably Jean Le Clerc).
Marking: Marked on the end of the butt: a cock in reserve with beveled corners, flanked by an A on the right), and an I on the left (assay mark, 1798–1809); a head of an old man, in a circle, flanked by the numbers 8 and 5 (second assay mark, 1798–1809); a lozenge with a laurel spray and the letter F to the left; a crowned head of a woman, three-quarters face, in a circle;
On the tongue attaching the trigger guard: the two assay marks described above;
On the base of each barrel: crossed laurel brances enclosing a fleur-de-lis, within an oval; to the right and left of the intersection, an L and a C (Jean Le Clerc).
On one barrel: 1809; and on the second barrel: 217.