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Auction Date: April 30, 2016

Lot 1290: German - Wheellock

Sold for German - Wheellock
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A) H. Stockmann Wheellock Pistol
Estimated Price: $30,000 - $50,000
Item Views 172 Bid Activity Average
Serial #German - Wheellock ManufacturerGerman ModelWheellock
TypePistol Gauge46 Catalog Page152
Barrel23 5/8 Inch Part Octagon FinishBright Grip
Stockfruitwood ClassAntique RatingSee Condition
DescriptionHans Stockmann was active in Dresden from 1590 to 1639 and produced very fine pairs of wheellock pistols and sporting arms many of which are now in well known collections throughout Europe. Many of Stockmann's pistols were added to the state arms collection by Christian II, Elector of Saxony (1583-1611) during his short ten year term as Elector and used by his Trabanten Guard. During his life and shortly after his death, Central Europe was embroiled in multiple destructive wars; the worst was the Thirty Years War that resulted in the death of 25 to 40 percent of the population of the German states. These very early 17th century pistols are very similar to other wheellock pistols identified as originating from the Saxon Armory Collection in Dresden. For example, multiple pistols by Stockmann were part of "The Splendor of Dresden: Five Centuries of Art Collecting, An Exhibition from the State Art Collections of Dresden, German Democratic Republic" in 1978-1979 and are listed in the exhibition catalog. The "S" markings on the upper right barrel flats near the breech, the "H" markings on the upper left flats, the overall stock shape and ornamentation including the snail and beast motifs on the left flats at the lock screws, and the style of locks all are matching or similar to the few other known examples including a pair that was in our Premiere Auction in September 2015. In "Great Art Treasures of the Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Volume 1," V. A. Suslov writes that Stockmann's work is "ranked among the finest examples of antique weaponry." This pair has two stage part round, part octagon barrels dated "1606" on the top of the barrels and have attractive engraving patterns. The locks also have some light engraving designs. The stocks are smooth fruitwood with distinctive pear shaped pommels, straight wrists, and intricate scrimshawed inlays with floral and bestial designs. The ramrods also have matching scrimshawed tips. The designs on both pistols match but have some slight differences due to hand carving.

ConditionFine as professionally maintained and partially restored. The metal components remain mostly bright and have some light gray patina and very limited faint pitting. The stock is very good and has some slight cracks and repairs including a spliced piece on the forend 11 inches back from the muzzle. The action has not been tested but appears to be functional. The markings and engraving patterns are crisp.
B) H. Stockmann Wheellock Pistol
Serial #German - Wheellock ManufacturerGerman ModelWheellock
TypePistol Gauge46 Catalog Page152
Barrel23 5/8 Inch Part Octagon FinishBright Grip
Stockfruitwood ClassAntique RatingSee Condition
DescriptionAs discussed in A.

ConditionFine as professionally maintained and partially restored. The metal surfaces remain partially bright and have some gray patina along with faint patches of pitting. The stock is fine as repaired. There are some small pieced repairs, a few minor hairline cracks, and some light handling and storage marks. The lock has not been tested but appears to be fully functional. This is a very scarce pair of early 17th century pistols. Very few of Stockmann's pistols, or any other high end wheellocks for that matter, are in private collections, and they even more rarely appear on the open market.
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