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Object Title

Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII

Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII

Date

Dated 1537

Object Number

XII.1

Provenance

Old Tower Collection. 'King Henry Eights carbine' in 1691 valuation. This gun may be one mentioned in the inventory of the King's armour and weapons drawn up after his death in 1547. 'Itm one Chamber pece in a Stocke of woode lyned in the Cheke with vellet.'.

Physical Description

Originally a wheel-lock but now fitted with a match-lock. Barrel of square section at the breech then round , the muzzle finished with mouldings. Hinged breech-block resembling the Snider breech. The block has a short operating-lever on the right and is secured when closed by a transverse pin at the front, the breech being chambered for a reloadable steel cartridge. The breech-block is chiselled with acanthus foliage and the top face of the breech itself with a Tudor Rose crowned with two lion supporters, the space below being engraved with foliage now almost obliterated. The beginning of the round section is chiselled with three slender columns framing at the base two medallion heads, the capitals supporting a frieze bearing the initials H R. The remaining length of the barrel is fluted as far as the mouldings at the muzzle which carry a brass fore-sight. The breech retains traces of gilding. Stock with slightly up curved shoulder-butt with a butt-trap on the right and another smaller trap below, the covers of both missing. The left side has been fitted with a cheek-pad (originally recorded as velvet) of which only the brass securing-nails remain. The space between the lock-screws is slightly carved with foliage. Immediately behind the breech is an applied shield-shaped plaque of brass, formerly gilt, engraved with figures of St. George and the Dragon. There is a projecting boss on the underside of the stock carved with acanthus, intended as a grip for the left hand. The fore-end, which was originally carried to the muzzle, has had the final three and a half inches trimmed away. The letters G T are incised twice on the right side behind the lock plate. Steel trigger-guard, probably a replacement. The present match-lock with sliding pan-cover appears to be of 19th century make.

Featured in

Techniques

Manufactured

Materials

Dimensions

BarrelLength25.6 inhes
BarrelLength650 mm
OverallLength38.375 inhes
OverallLength975 mm
OverallWeight4.22 kg
OverallWeight9.5 lb

Firearms/Artillery

Serial Number None visible

Calibre

30 bore

Inscriptions and Marks

Mark
GT
behind lock plate
incised
Maker's mark
W H over a cross
breech-block
incised

Bibliographic References

John Hewitt, Official Catalogue of the Tower Armouries, London, 1859: p.67

Sir Sibald D. Scott, The British Army, Vol.2, London and New York, 1868, p.263, illus. (Plate XXV)

C ffoulkes, Inventory and Survey of the Armouries of the Tower of London, London, 1916, vol.II, p.331. illus.( plate XXXIII.)

Royal Armouries Museum, Tower of London [souvenir guide], Royal Armouries, Leeds, 2000, p.10, colour ill.

Graeme Rimer, Wheellock Firearms of the Royal Armouries, Royal Armouries Museum, Leeds, 2001. p.15, ill.

C. Paggiarino, The Royal Armouries, masterpieces of medieval and renaissance arms and armour, Milan, 2011, volume 1

The Inventory of King Henry VIII, The Transcript

Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII, by Master WH. XII.1
Thumbnail image of Matchlock breech-loading gun - Matchlock breech-loading gun for Henry VIII By Master WH.