FRENCH EMPIRE Granger-Merieux ST. ETIENNE Pistol
Late 1700s Napoleonic Era, GOLD EMBELLISHED
Here we present an antique French Officer’s Pistol, made circa the late 1700s at St. Etienne, France. This percussion sidearm would have started out life as a flintlock and was converted sometime after the percussion firing system was introduced. The First French Empire was the empire of Napoleon Bonaparte of France and the dominant power in much of continental Europe at the beginning of the 19th century. A series of wars, known as the Napoleonic Wars, forever changed the global landscape geographically and politically. At its height in 1812, the French Empire had 130 departments, ruled over 70 million subjects, maintained an extensive military presence in Germany, Italy, Spain, and the Duchy of Warsaw, and counted Prussia and Austria as nominal allies.
This pistol is belt-sized and has a .58 caliber bore. This would have been the type of pistol an officer purchased on his own to bring to battle in case he were to come into contact with the enemy. The lock is marked “Granger-Merieux a St. Etienne”. The top of the barrel is marked “LG” in small letters and “CANON TORDU” which translates literally to “twisted canon” and refers to the method of barrel making used. Golden designs such as the heart at the muzzle, the variously straight and zig-zagged lines at the borders, and the floral design that transitions into these borders make this a beautiful piece of weaponry.
The overall condition is good. Though the barrel wedge is absent, the barrel does not move at all in relation to the stock. The bore is smooth and dark. The action does not currently function, and we believe that the mainspring has fallen under the tumbler, locking it up for the moment.
Own the original! This is a legitimate antique and not a reproduction.
Barrel is 5-1/2 inches.
Overall condition as seen in photos.
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