Object Title

Wheellock sporting rifle - By Hans Stifter

Wheellock sporting rifle - By Hans Stifter


dated 1671

Object Number



From the Norton Hall Collection. Presented by the National Art-Collections Fund, 1942. Formally in the collection of Beriah Botfield (1807 - 1863) at Norton Hall, Northamptonshire. This collection would appear to have been formed in the 1840's. Norton Hall was acquired by Beriah Botfield's grandfather (who died in 1801), Thomas Botfield acquired it from the descendants of Nicholas Breton. Beriah Botfield restored Norton Hall to its former glories. The collection was finally purchased, with the aid of the National Art-Collections Fund, for the nation from Lady Beatrice Thynne on the occasion of her death in 1942. The purchase was negotiated with Lady Weymouth who was acting as attorney for Lord Weymouth (who was away on active service), who was tenant-for-life of the property (the collection had been settled on Lord Weymouth for life).

Physical Description

The octagonal barrel is inscribed with the name of the maker Hans Stifter and the date 1671. It is also stamped with his mark. The lock has an internal wheel and the lockplate is engraved with a classical scene. The dog-head is in the shape of a classical figure, possibly Hercules. The wooden stock has a shoulder-butt and is lightly carved with acanthus foliage and on the butt-trap cover is a scallop with a shell motif. Gilt-brass mounts that are engraved with strapwork and foliage and the butt-plate is inscribed No.21. With hair trigger fitted.


hand made


BarrelLength32 in
BarrelLength806 mm
OverallLength47 in
OverallLength119 mm
OverallWeight4.94 kg
OverallWeight10.9 lb


Serial Number None


.550 in

Inscriptions and Marks

Maker's mark
HANS STIFTER 1671 and maker's mark.