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Discussion Starter #1
Hi, all:

I'm new and hoping to find help. My father has passed down to me2 antique flintlock pistols. His guess is they are Italian, 18th century, but that's just a guess. Neither has discernible maker's mark. Pictures of both attached. Any help MUCH appreciated, thanks!
 

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Wow, I wish I could help but I'm clueless. Wouldn't you like to have seen it in its prime.
 

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Yes, I'm sure they were beautiful when new, still are IMHO. I do keep digging and am learning more. The flintlock mechanism sets a date range in the 1700's. Most guns made then did not bear a maker's mar and having a maker's mark adds value and makes research easier. I see the form described several ways: horse pistol, cavalry pistol, dueling pistol. There are some close but not exact matches at various auction sites that support European, probably Italian, origin. I'll keep digging and update as I learn more. Thanks for helping!
 

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Those grooves in the frizzen are typical of flintlocks from the Mediterranean region because of the poor quality flint available there. Spanish flintlocks would have more commonly been miquelet locks and that leaves us with Italy.
 

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Very interesting and helpful, thank you. You've taught me about "frizzens" and "miquelet locks", both helped we widen my internet searches. I'm seeing more and more about similar-looking guns made in Arabia and Turkey, which also widens my search. Pistol 1 does have a fragment of a mark below the frizzen, you can see it if you zoom in. Thanks again for the help!
 

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The way the barrels are held into the stock with wire wrapping is more like how the Arabic people would have done things but the overall style is more European in nature, They could have been captured in a conflict and repaired in the Arabic style of doing things. Too bad they can't speak, I bet they have one heck of a story they could tell us :)

Another term that might help you widen your knowledge of guns from that region is "snaphaunce" a type of lock more commonly used by the Arabic world.
 

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You're the second guy to mention the story the guns could tell. The guns are new to me, part of my father's legacy and hearing comments like yours give me a lot more perspective than them being just "things" I have to worry about dealing with, thank you. I'm going to relax a bit and enjoy the journey of where they take me and what I learn. Right now I'm off to learn about "snaphaunces". Thanks again!
 
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