Object Title

Flintlock muzzle-loading musket - India Pattern

Flintlock muzzle-loading musket - India Pattern


about 1813

Object Number



Old Tower Collection

Physical Description

The lock is a New Land Pattern, but engraved in the manner of the India Pattern, with border lines round the edges of the plate and flat, bevelled ring-neck cock. The stamping of TOWER in a curve across the tail, and the Crowned GR are typical of the period. The raised pan is standard, and the tail of the steel conforms to the New Land Pattern, only the upright portion having been altered. This consists of a face of the usual form as the front of a vertical chamber with a finely knurled screw at the top which removes to load with fine powder. The inner surface of the pan cover has two cavities with a separating stud between them, which allows powder to drain from the magazine to the pan evenly. The magazine is operated by giving the lever on the lower right a half-turn and then returning it to the upward position. This turns a drum set across the bottom of the magazine which has a cut in it for a fixed amount of powder which is cut-off when the drum is turned. The magazine holds sufficient priming for twenty shots. There are no special markings. Stocked to 4 3/8 in. of the muzzle and in every respect a standard late production India Pattern arm except that the lock is of New Land Pattern contour. The right butt bears an 1805-dated Crowned Broad Arrow, and the sideplate flat is stamped with a P surmounted by three feathers.





BarrelLength39.17 in.
BarrelLength995 mm
OverallLength55.25 in.
OverallLength1394 mm
OverallWeight4.5 kg
OverallWeight10.2 lb


Serial Number None visible


0.74 in

Inscriptions and Marks

1805-dated Crowned Broad Arrow
Butt (right side)
P surmounted by three feathers
Sideplate flat



For a Dublin blunderbuss fitted with Thomson magazine priming frizzen see Sotheby's Olympia sale catalogue for 5 December, 2002, Lot 143. For further reading see Rimer, Graeme J.; A poli-chambered gun and James Thomson's patent of 1814, Journal of the Arms and Armour Society Supplement, September 1990, pp.58-95.

James Thomson submitted this idea to the Ordnance in 1813. It was found that rapid firing heated and expanded the drum and caused it to jam. A slight alteration was made band the idea was fitted to twelve muskets issued to the 2nd Bn. Of the 9th Foot. It seems possible that the alteration was the drilling hole through the operating lever, and perhaps enlarging the gripping surface of the lever, so that additional leverage could be obtained if necessary. The fact of a separate powder horn being necessary to carry fine powder wasa leading cause of its rejection. Subsequently Thomson patented the idea in March, 1814 (No.3784). (HLB, BMF 156).