Ethnographic Arms & Armour
 

Go Back   Ethnographic Arms & Armour > Discussion Forums > European Armoury
User Name
Password
FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 18th July 2009, 03:40 PM   #1
Matchlock
(deceased)
 
Matchlock's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bavaria, Germany - the center of 15th and 16th century gunmaking
Posts: 4,310
Default A Highly Interesting Regensburg Matchlock Wallgun of ca. 1640, the Barrel ca. 1490

I acquired this heavy and impressive wall piece more than 20 years ago.

The overall length is 123.5 cm, the barrel 77.5 cm, the caliber 2.7 cm, the overall weight 16.3 kg.

The Late Gothic barrel is of wrought iron and was almost certainly made in Nuremberg in ca. 1490. It is octagonal throughout, with a pronouncedly swamped short octagonal muzzle section in the form of a crown (Krönlein-Mündungskopf) bearing the bead fore sight. The caliber was enlarged from originally ca. 2.0 cm to now 2.7 cm at the time of its most recent restocking in the later period of the Thirty Years War in ca. 1640.

The barrel has undergone several alterations during its long working life. First of all, it was shortened at the rear in about 1530/40, with the original back sight, maker's mark and large touch hole all now missing, and shut up with a tang screw in the shape of a roundel; at the same time the back sight was moved a bit forward towards the muzzle and a new, smaller touch hole with round pan and screwed swiveling cover with acorn shaped handle were added. When the barrel was wrought in the late 15th century the rear end would just have been blocked up by a red hot iron lug hammered in. We may safely assume that the original caliber was not yet bored out at that time because the 16th century was the age of relatively small calibers, but a new stock and probably an early form of tinder snap lock were added.

About 100 years after these modernizations, at the height of the Thirty Years War (1618-1648) and in its final phase when anything suitable for shooting was badly needed, this old fashioned but undestroyable Gothic barrel had to undergo its last alteration in about 1640: its bore was drilled out from ca. 2.0 to 2.7 cm, and a massive beechwood full stock with 'modern' early Baroque form of the belly butt stock was added, together with the present matchlock mechanism. Into the right side of the butt stock the initials ZG, two crossed Gothic keys between, are branded; the crossed keys are the city arms of Regensburg, Central Bavaria, and ZG stands for Zeughaus, which means city arsenal.

Interesting enough, as this was recognized to be a very old, time honored piece by then, the stock maker carried over a few tiny Gothic stylistic elements from the earlier stock which he disposed of. Also, the scale pattern stamped behind the rear end of the barrel is a reminiscence of Early Renaissance design when guns were regarded and ornamented stylistically as fire spitting sea dragons.

While the barrel was painted with read lead (minium) all over originally, only traces of it can be seen on its upper surface now; however, where the underside of the barrel is protected by the fore stock it retains all of its original paint, thus conveying an impression of how flamboyant it must have looked 150 years earlier.

This important piece is a witness of war history, and thanks to an almost identical barrel at the Bavarian Army Museum in Ingolstadt, inv.no. A 210, still retaining its original ca. 1490 Gothic blackened straight oak full stock, large touch hole with slight pan moulding, deeply struck Nuremberg maker's mark and original "small" bore of 2.0 cm we know what my piece looked like some 520 years ago (images attached at the bottom).

It is preserved in very good condition still and hosting it in my collection really means a lot to me.

Enjoy the documentation,
Michael
Attached Images
            

Last edited by Matchlock : 18th July 2009 at 06:34 PM.
Matchlock is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th July 2009, 03:47 PM   #2
Matchlock
(deceased)
 
Matchlock's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bavaria, Germany - the center of 15th and 16th century gunmaking
Posts: 4,310
Default

More.
Attached Images
          
Matchlock is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th July 2009, 03:55 PM   #3
Matchlock
(deceased)
 
Matchlock's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bavaria, Germany - the center of 15th and 16th century gunmaking
Posts: 4,310
Default

The rest.
Attached Images
    
Matchlock is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th July 2009, 04:00 PM   #4
Matchlock
(deceased)
 
Matchlock's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bavaria, Germany - the center of 15th and 16th century gunmaking
Posts: 4,310
Default

The piece in the Bavarian Army Museum Ingolstadt, A 210, in its unaltered appearance of ca. 1490 (see text above).

I owe the first assembly of images together with the printed text to Robert Brooker jr., whom I am presently assisting setting up and publishing the BAM inventory.

m
Attached Images
     

Last edited by Matchlock : 18th July 2009 at 06:25 PM.
Matchlock is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th July 2009, 04:26 PM   #5
Spiridonov
Member
 
Spiridonov's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Russia, Leningrad
Posts: 351
Send a message via ICQ to Spiridonov
Default

OOO! Amazing! Thank you!
Spiridonov is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th July 2009, 04:43 PM   #6
Matchlock
(deceased)
 
Matchlock's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bavaria, Germany - the center of 15th and 16th century gunmaking
Posts: 4,310
Default

Thank you, Spiridonov,

It's a pleasure.

Michael
Matchlock is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th July 2009, 07:27 PM   #7
Spiridonov
Member
 
Spiridonov's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Russia, Leningrad
Posts: 351
Send a message via ICQ to Spiridonov
Default

I have some questions about wallgun in the bottom photo. What mark on a wood? Is the wood painted? Than the tree is impregnated? Whether there is a tree date corresponds to wood date?
Spiridonov is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 20th July 2009, 11:31 AM   #8
Spiridonov
Member
 
Spiridonov's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Russia, Leningrad
Posts: 351
Send a message via ICQ to Spiridonov
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spiridonov
Whether there is a tree date corresponds to wood date?

Whether there is a BARREL date corresponds to wood date?
Spiridonov is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21st July 2009, 06:36 PM   #9
Matchlock
(deceased)
 
Matchlock's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bavaria, Germany - the center of 15th and 16th century gunmaking
Posts: 4,310
Default

Hi Spirodonov,

Reply to your first question:

I, too, noticed on Robert's images that there was a coat of arms painted on the left side of the stock of the Ingolstadt haquebut/wallgun, almost certainly city arsenal or owner's arms. I will try to get a detailed image and do some research, so please be patient.

As I wrote the oak wood is stained black; it does no seem like paint to me. The staining was certainly a sort of impregnation of the wood, especially as the grounding was probably a water solution of chalk.

You are perfectly right, there is such a thing called the chronology of South German oak wood. As far as I know it has been set up for oak only. If the museum would consent to having a portion sawn off the stock (!) the cutting date of the oak tree in the second half of the 15th century could be determined by a synopsis of the annual rings as closely as plus/minus 15 years - not actually very helpful indeed ...

Reply to your second question:

As I wrote both the barrel and the stock of the Ingolstadt wallgun are contemporary, i.e. both were made in ca. 1490, the barrel almost certainly at a Nuremberg workshop.

Best,
Michael
Matchlock is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd July 2009, 05:09 AM   #10
Spiridonov
Member
 
Spiridonov's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Russia, Leningrad
Posts: 351
Send a message via ICQ to Spiridonov
Default

Thanks for the full answer.I will be waiting for more detailed photos
Spiridonov is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd January 2015, 01:40 PM   #11
Matchlock
(deceased)
 
Matchlock's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Bavaria, Germany - the center of 15th and 16th century gunmaking
Posts: 4,310
Default

Finally, here are more detailed images of that heavy haquebut - and of the pan perforated by rust because it held the priming powder over most of the time of its age.
Those wall guns were usually kept loaded and primed at their places. near the loop holes in the walls of a fortified town wall or a tower; thus, they were immediately ready to fire in case of emergency, and could be set off by a red hot igniting iron or the glowing match of a linstock.

Please also see my thread
http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=8185

and especially:
http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/newre...wreply&p=178523

m
Attached Images
         

Last edited by Matchlock : 3rd January 2015 at 02:06 PM.
Matchlock is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10th January 2015, 08:12 PM   #12
bkp747
Member
 
bkp747's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado
Posts: 15
Default

Wow! A great addition to a CLASSIC post, Michael, I absolutely LOVE those beauties... I hope you are doing well.
bkp747 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump



All times are GMT. The time now is 12:06 AM.


Powered by: vBulletin Version 3.0.3
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Posts are regarded as being copyrighted by their authors and the act of posting material is deemed to be a granting of an irrevocable nonexclusive license for display here.