Object Title

Flintlock gun - By Claude Martin

Flintlock gun - By Claude Martin



Object Number



From the Norton Hall Collection. Presented by the National Art-Collections Fund, 1942. Formerly in the collection of Beriah Botfield (1807-1863) at Norton Hall, Northamptonshire. Norton Hall was acquired by Beriah Botfield's grandfather, Thomas Botfield (who died in 1801), who had acquired it from the descendants of Nicholas Breton for the sum of £37,000. His son Beriah Botfield restored Norton Hall to its former glories. Tthis collection would appear to have been formed in the 1840's. The collection was finally purchased for the nation from Lady Beatrice Thynne on the occasion of her death. The full sum paid for the collection, some 556 objects or so, would appear to have been £2,650 and the purchase was negotiated with Lady Weymouth who was acting 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 by Lady Thynne.).

Physical Description

The barrel is octagonal at the breech with a browned finish showing the ribbon pattern of the construction. The breech is chiselled in low relief with running foliage on a gold ground. A scroll on the top facet is engraved LUCKNOW ARSENAL MAJOR CLAUDE MARTIN. The barrel is secured by a false breech and sliding pins. The lock is engraved with foliage and the cock pierced with scrollwork. The lock plate is inscribed LUCKNOW ARSENAL. The safety catch locks both the tumbler and frizzen. The stock is of Indian rosewood. he fore-end reaches the muzzle, and is divided in two for convenience when travelling. The mounts are of silver, engraved with floral ornament and scrolls. The butt is inlaid with foliage in silver wire and flowers and birds in silver sheet. The screw plate is a modern replacement in German silver


BarrelLength1001 mm
OverallLength1420 mm


Serial Number None visible


.690 in (14 bore)

Inscriptions and Marks




Claude Martin (1735-1800) enlisted into the French army only to be captured by the East India Company army at Pondicherry near Madras in 1761. Joining the Company army he rose to the rank of general by 1796. He also became a close friend of the Nawab of Awadh, and in 1776 was appointed superintendent of the Nawab's arsenal at Lucknow, incidentally becoming one of the richest Europeans in India. Martin developed Lucknow arsenal into a manufactory of weapons and ordnance for the Nawab's army, and also catered for his master's taste for technical scientific and artistic objects, making a number of repeating flintlock guns, one of which he presented to the King of France