Captain South’s Lorenzoni Pistol

Research into this ‘Lorenzoni’ type repeating flintlock pistol has turned up an interesting (and Christmassy!) human story. The pistol, which belonged to a Captain James South, connects Christmas dinner with chimney sweeping, from Florence, Italy to London. Jonathan Ferguson, Interim Keeper of Firearms & Artillery, explains how.  Ours is not the most obvious collection to have a Christmas association, but believe it or not we have at least one. Captain South’s Pistol It’s a favourite object of mine; a so-called ‘Lorenzoni’ typeRead more

History of the term Brown Bess

Curator of Firearms, Jonathan Ferguson, gives us a peek at just some of the fascinating research that has gone into his article: ‘Trusty Bess’: the Definitive Origins and History of the term ‘Brown Bess’ ‘Twas then I thought on trusty Bess; Who, tho’ I knew she was but poor, I always found a faithful Whore.’ -’Fecit Recantatio Versum’ by Thomas Brown (1730) The smoothbore muzzle-loading musket, whether fitted with matchlock, flintlock or percussion lock, was the infantry soldier’s main weapon forRead more

Flintlock Repair Work

This English flintlock is a William III Land Service musket dating from approximately 1689-1702. The lock-plate is engraved with the cipher of William III and Mary II and the maker’s mark ‘WP’ is stamped on the right side of the lower breech and repeated near the muzzle. The barrel is also marked ‘EG’ crowned, referring to Edward Godward, c.1695-96. The dog-catch of the lock has been previously restored. The metal components on the flintlock were in very good condition priorRead more