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Old 12th February 2009, 10:40 PM   #1
Norman McCormick
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Default 16th Cent. Powder Flask???

Hi,
This item is being offered for sale locally. I do not want any monetary opinions but does anyone have any advice as to how I might identify whether or not this item is "right" i.e. does it appear to have age, what type of material is it made of and an opinion of the piece in general. I know that 'absolutes' are very difficult without actually handling the piece but any help would be appreciated.
Regards,
Norman.
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Old 12th February 2009, 10:55 PM   #2
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Another photo.
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Old 13th February 2009, 03:47 PM   #3
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Default Nuremberg Caliver Powder Horns, ca. 1600-10

Hi Norman,

This is only the body, i.e. a fragment of a Nuremberg made caliver powder horn, with all its original iron mounts and frog hook missing. These were made in large numbers at Nuremberg workshops and we know of dated examples which mark a time line of 1598 to 1611, so the basic dating is 'early 17th century'. The body is of cow horn flattened and figured into shape by hot water. Various patterns of engraving are known, all of those depicting humans based on Old Testmant scenes; very often found is the Judith and Holofernes head scene but there are also engravings showing flower heads and intertwining floral motifs.

Common to the whole group are the concentrical circles on the oberse side where the frog hook was mounted.

Some of these horns were also made in Augsburg, Austria and Switzerland but those are clearly indentifiable by both their style of engraving and mounts.

I should estimate the fragment illustrated at about 150 USD as a large number of well preserved flasks of that type are in the market. So all that accounts for the price is the condition of the piece.

I attach images of samples dated 1601, 1603, 1606 and 1608 respectively, as well as of leather frogs with ball pouches to which these horns were attached by their obverse hooks.

Michael
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Old 13th February 2009, 03:54 PM   #4
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More.
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Old 13th February 2009, 04:12 PM   #5
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More.

The illustration at the bottom shows a caliver man (Schütze) with his caliver (which was lighter, shorter and of smaller bore than the heavy musket of the musketeer), powder horn and frog. This engraving is from Jacob de Gheyn's famos Wapenhandelinghe which wa published in 1608.

Michael
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Old 13th February 2009, 04:39 PM   #6
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Some finely made and well preserved leather frogs for caliver powder horns from my collection.

Michael
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Old 13th February 2009, 05:43 PM   #7
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Hi Michael,
Many thanks for the superb info. Do you think it would be possible to find the parts to make this a complete item and if so how easy?
My Regards,
Norman.
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Old 13th February 2009, 06:14 PM   #8
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Sorry, Norman,

But honestly: no. There is not the slightest chance to complete that body with original matching parts, nor of re-building them in a decent way and at a reasonable price.

There are various good and complete flasks of this type up for sale every few months, the prices varying from ca. 1,100 to 1,500 USD. A complete piece would give you much more satisfaction, believe me. I never bought fragments in order to complete them. If you still want to purchase that body I think it would be best to keep it the way it is.

If you wish me to I will notify you as soon as the next pieces arise. I regularly search all sales wordwide.

Michael
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Old 13th February 2009, 06:17 PM   #9
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A Saxon caliver flask and leather frog preserved at the Musée de l'Armée, Paris.

Michael
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Old 13th February 2009, 06:23 PM   #10
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Hi Michael,
Thanks again for the info and the offer. I'll keep searching here at a local level, prices a lot cheaper, and you never know what will turn up.
My thanks again.
Regards,
Norman.
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Old 13th February 2009, 06:26 PM   #11
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You're welcome, Norman.

Good luck.

Regards,
Michael
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Old 14th February 2009, 04:19 PM   #12
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More of de Gheyns 1608 engravings picturing the caliver man and his accouterments.

m
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Old 23rd July 2012, 02:24 AM   #13
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For much more information please see

http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=8519

m
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