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Old 21st December 2017, 01:16 PM   #1
corrado26
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Default Knee-pistol of the Osmanic Empire

Today I got this not too bad Osmanic pistol. The whole stock is nicely decorated with brass nails and cut lines, its butt shows at both sides a pleasing ornament. The lock is engraved with a floral decoration as is the cover of the battery spring. The nut is without a tumbler. There is no mark or signature and the sideplate could eventually be a later replacement but has the same decoration as all other brass items. The barrel has nice silver inlays in form of swords, stars etc.
Total lenght is 450 mm, barrel length 230mm, cal. 45mm

Hope you like it as I do
corrado26
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Old 21st December 2017, 02:25 PM   #2
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Hi fernando

i love it!
I can tell your precisely your pistol came from: Tunisia.
Look on our forum, you'll find the same lock, and design on the butt with bone and coral).
I think that just the ramrod is a replacement.

Best,
Kubur
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Old 21st December 2017, 05:16 PM   #3
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VERY NICE!! I agree with Kubur that the rammer is a likely replacement. The rest of the gun looks nice and original.
Stu
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Old 22nd December 2017, 05:05 PM   #4
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Hi Corrado.

WOW!!! Super nice !!! And appears in great condition. Would love to own it myself. Congratulations. You might stain the replacement rammer to a darker color. Otherwise, it looks ready for display. A really nice one.

Interesting these Knee Pistols were widely popular - but only in the Eastern markets.

Rick
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Old 28th December 2017, 04:31 AM   #5
Philip
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Default Nice, clean example! Hard on the knees...

Great find, congratulations.

The term "knee pistol" is an odd one. I remember an explanation of it in an old arms catalog, it may have been one of those issued by dealer Norm Flayderman back in the 1960s. Be that is it may, it was surmised that the butt was shaped like this so a cavalryman could brace it against his knee while he was in the saddle, to shoot any foot-soldier who was approaching alongside. Sounds a bit outlandish to me--the idea of the recoil smacking me on the kneecap isn't too appealing. What do you think, Rick? Have you perhaps tried this style of shooting yourself at the range, on or off a horse?

I think that from a functional standpoint, these things can be pointed and fired just like any other pistol. They're a tad heavy but they balance OK in the hand.

Designing the grip after the butt of a shoulder-fired gun is a stylistic touch that has a north Italian precedent. There is a group of pistols, mainly Brescian, of the first half of the 17th cent. that have this feature; the grips mimic the shape of gun stocks of the same place and time. These are invariably fitted with wheellocks. Nolfo di Carpegna, in his book Brescian Firearms, refers to the style as the "Farnese" pistol stock. There is a magnificent pair of this type, attributed to King Felipe IV of Spain, in the Armerķa Real de Madrid (K90).

In Europe, this butt style (on pistols) seems to have been in vogue for just a few decades, and its popularity was fairly localized. The concept was undoubtedly exported to the Balkans and Turkey, most likely in the extensive Venetian trade networks, and it really took off after that. The Ottomans updated them to flintlocks, and adopted a more generic European shape for the butt (albeit a somewhat caricatured version), producing them well into the 19th cent.

This is another case of a European firearms innovation that had a far longer shelf life in Oriental countries. The longevity of the Anglo-Dutch snaphaunce and the Catalan agujeta miquelet lock in North Africa are other examples that we've discussed on other threads.
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Old 29th December 2017, 08:05 PM   #6
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Hi Philip.

Yes, there had to be a European origin to this pistol style. It seems like it never caught on in Europe. But as mentioned, it was certainly popular in the Eastern markets for a long time. Another one of these Eastern mysteries.
Yes, knee pistol is a curious analogy. But notice some of these pistols (unlike Corrado's) have an even more curved butt plate. I took one of these with the extra curve and sat on a chair and positioned it over my knee. It does fit very well. LOL Although I would not want to try firing it off my knee without a leather pad. LOL And maybe this is what they did (?) With a pistol size load and a leather pad, I could see this doable. I'm somewhat more inclined to think the butt was pressed against the saddle or waist/hip. There does not seem to be any real historic evidence one way or the other.
One thing I have noticed on all these knee pistols is the wide/thick grip area. Obviously for added strength.
Come to think of it, at our shooting range there is a cowboy action area with a manican horse. Maybe I should try this out ? LOL


Rick
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Old 29th December 2017, 10:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickystl
Hi Philip.

Yes, there had to be a European origin to this pistol style. It seems like it never caught on in Europe.
Come to think of it, at our shooting range there is a cowboy action area with a manican horse. Maybe I should try this out ? LOL


Rick

True, the gun-butt style of grip was in fashion for only a limited time in Europe but we see in some Western countries a wider popularity of big pistols whose barrels approached or even overlapped carbine size. Case in point -- those long barreled pedrenyales with short ball butts made in Ripoll. Brescian pistoletti had barrels as long as 20-22 in. -- comparable to those on the short trombino (with a conventional shoulder stock) made throughout the peninsula. ( I just picked up a trombino made in Naples, probably late 17th cent., with a barrel barely over 19 in., and a bore around .50 diameter.) There are quite a few Brescian pistols around which are longer. Similarly long handguns were made in Germanic countries as well but I'm not as familiar with those.

So it goes to show that both Western and Eastern cultues saw the need for very large handguns, it's just that a particular grip style was preferred in one area for a much longer period -- perhaps in keeping with the technical conservatism which many Oriental civilizations were prone to in the first place.
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Old 2nd January 2018, 03:09 PM   #8
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According to Greek sources these "knee-pistols" were primarily used in the maritime environment by sailors. I guess when boarding an enemy vessel or defending against such action they would serve as a combat shotgun would today. Spray the pellets and close with the enemy for the direct action with the yataghan.

Very nice piece.
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Old 3rd January 2018, 09:07 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by digenis
According to Greek sources these "knee-pistols" were primarily used in the maritime environment by sailors. I guess when boarding an enemy vessel or defending against such action they would serve as a combat shotgun would today. Spray the pellets and close with the enemy for the direct action with the yataghan.

Very nice piece.


Digenis is right and brings us to the first post. This blunderbuss is from Tunisia.
The pirates and privateers from North Africa were very active from Morocco to Algeria....
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Old 3rd January 2018, 09:55 AM   #10
Fernando K
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Hello everyone

Mmmm ..... I have my doubts. Despite the lush decoration, it seems a piece for tourists. The engraving seems to me that it has been imitated in the foundry. I would like to see some picture of the inside of the key .....

Affectionately. Fernando K
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Old 3rd January 2018, 02:05 PM   #11
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Here are some more Fotos
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Old 3rd January 2018, 02:27 PM   #12
Fernando K
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Hello

Definitely, it seems to me a lock armed with castings, instead of being forged. I have not seen any indication that has been filed in any part, not even in the springs. The surfaces show a granulate, compatible with casting

The decoration in the barrel in the shape of a zig-zag show a rounded edge, incompatible with the chiseling or chiseled.

A test would be to mount a stone in the foot of the cat (cock or hammer) and shoot, to see if the frizzen produces sparks. If, as I suspect it is false, it would not produce sparks.

is what I think, just by looking at the pictures.

Affectionately. Fernando K
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Old 4th January 2018, 08:14 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fernando K
Hello

Definitely, it seems to me a lock armed with castings, instead of being forged. I have not seen any indication that has been filed in any part, not even in the springs. The surfaces show a granulate, compatible with casting
Fernando K


So these pistols are also tourist pistols??
http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showt...tunisian+pistol

No way Fernando (not always)!



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Old 4th January 2018, 10:28 AM   #14
Fernando K
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Kubur

I mean Corrado's gun. Of those that are in the other post, I have to analyze with more time.

Fernando k
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Old 4th January 2018, 01:01 PM   #15
Fernando K
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Hello

Here I upload an image of a lock of the same origin. As you can see the decoration is in fine lines, achieved with a hand chisel or burin chisel. In the disputed lock, the decoration is rude, because fine lines can not be reproduced in the mold

Fernando K
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Old 4th January 2018, 03:15 PM   #16
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from my collection
sorry for the poor pictures
Also see
http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=17172
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Last edited by Cerjak : 4th January 2018 at 03:33 PM.
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Old 4th January 2018, 06:47 PM   #17
Fernando K
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Kubur

For example, in post number 8 you can see the upper part of the barrel, with an inscription that seems to be Arabic. They are arabesques, but looking at an Arabic alphabet, I can not find any similar letters, except one

Fernando K
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Old 6th January 2018, 08:14 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cerjak
from my collection
sorry for the poor pictures
Also see
http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=17172


Really cool
Because of the lock maybe Algerian
or in between Algeria and Tunisia... nice
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Old 6th January 2018, 08:16 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fernando K
Kubur

For example, in post number 8 you can see the upper part of the barrel, with an inscription that seems to be Arabic. They are arabesques, but looking at an Arabic alphabet, I can not find any similar letters, except one

Fernando K


Hi Fernando
I don't understand.
But to me the decorations are engraved and not moulded!
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Old 6th January 2018, 09:01 AM   #20
Fernando K
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http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showt...tunisian+pistol

Kubur

I do not understand. I refer to the post number 8, where you see an inscription that for me is false, in something that resembles the Arabic language, and you have answered something else.

affectionately. Fernando K
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