Page 240 - 86-Book1
P. 240

   LOT 236
Elaborate Pair of Presentation/Exhibition Grade Silver Mounted, Gilt, and Engraved Flintlock Pistols by Bizouard of Marseille for the Eastern Market -A) Bizouard Flintlock Pistol - NSN, 64 cal., 13 inch round bbl., brown/gold/silver/bright finish, walnut stock. Claude Bizouard of Marseille is known to have manufactured many fine pairs of pistols for the Middle Eastern/North African market c. 1830-1866. This pair appears to date it to 1830- 1838 based on the hallmarks. A pair of pistols by Bizouard are known to have been presented by Sidi Mohamed II, Bey of Tunis, to Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria in 1857 now housed in the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna. This pair is certainly among the best made for the eastern market and reflect both the Islamic influence of the region and the quality and classic styling of the French gunmakers. The smoothbore barrels flare slightly at the muzzle and have silver blade front sights with heart bases surrounded by radiating gold lines, gold floral and star motifs on the fore-section, multiple girdles at the transition point, gold stars, crescent moons, and lamps among the designs on the breech section, and grooved rear sights on the upper tangs along with foliate patterns. The locks are signed “Bizouard/a Marseille” and have gold lined rainproof pans and bird scene and floral engraving. The furniture is silver and has cast floral and classical martial trophies, including turbans, crescent moons, and a variety of arms including flintlock pistols. They are much better detailed than most export pistols. The trigger guard tangs and left pommel stirrups have French silver hallmarks consisting of male heads (some flanked by “1” and “2”) in the
      style used from August 16, 1819, until May 10, 1838, along with a maker’s mark consisting of a crescent moon over “MI” and a dot. The stocks also feature profuse silver wire and floral inlays in fine patterns as well as some large flush inlays. In the European fashion, baleen ramrods with antique ivory tips are fitted below the barrels.

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