Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Pair of Wheellock Pistols with Matching Priming Flask/Spanner

Designer:
Decoration on the stocks copied in part from engravings by Étienne Delaune (French, Orléans 1518/19–1583 Strasbourg)
Date:
ca. 1570–80
Culture:
French
Medium:
Steel, gold, silver, brass, wood (walnut), staghorn, brass wire, pigment
Dimensions:
Cal. of each pistol, .44 in (11.18 mm); Wt. of 14.25.1433a: 4 lb. 2 oz. (1871 g); Wt. of 14.25.1433b: 4 lb. (1814 g); L. of each pistol, 20 1/8 in. (51.1 cm); L. of priming flask/spanner, 5 7/8 in. (14.91 cm)
Classification:
Firearms-Pistols-Wheellock
Credit Line:
Gift of William H. Riggs, 1913
Accession Number:
14.25.1433a, b; .1523
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 375
These pistols are remarkable for the chiseled and gilt decoration of the barrels and locks, for the distinctive figural and floral inlay on the stocks, which is copied in part from ornament engravings by Etienne Delaune (1518/19–1583), and for the use of red paint to highlight the stock decoration. The survival of the matching priming flask is also exceptional for a pistol from this early date.
Ex. coll.: Pourtalès-Gorgier.
Collection, sale catalogue, February, 1865. Paris, February 1865.

Thoumas, Charles Antoine. "Exposition Rétrospective Militaire du Ministère de la Guerre en 1889." In Les Anciennes Armées Françaises:. Vol. I. Paris, 1890. pl. opp. p. 46.

Scofield, J.K., J.F. Hayward, James G. Mann, and C.G.E. Bunt. "Old Firearms in America." The Connoisseur CVIII (1941). p. 8, figs. 2–2a.

Lenk, Torsten, Blanche Byrne, Jane Clark, Charles R. Beard, Leslie Southwick, Ian Eaves, John F. Hayward, Gordon T. Howard, and Walter J. Karcheski. The Journal of the Arms and Armour Society 2 (1956–1958).

Granscay, S. V., A. Hyatt Mayor, James J. Rorimer, William Holmes Forsyth, Bruno Thomas, Sir Richard C. Jebb, Randolph Bullock, Stephen V. Grancsay, and Helmut Nickel. "The New Galleries of Oriental Arms and Armor." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin (May 1958). p. 235, ill. top.

Hayward, J.F. The Art of the Gunmaker. Vol. 1. 1500–1660. London: Barrie and Rockliff, 1962. p. 284, pls. 16a, b.

Blair, Claude. Pistols of the World. London: Batsford, 1968.

Morin, Marco, Zdzislaw Zygulski, and Nolfo di Carpegna. Armi Antiche. 1st ed. Milan: Arnoldo Mondadori Editore, 1982. no. 89.



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