Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 135: Documented 17th Century British Doglock Musket

Auction Date: September 10, 2021

Documented Historic 17th Century Dunster Armoury British Doglock Musket

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $9,500 - $16,000

Documented Historic 17th Century Dunster Armoury British Doglock Musket

Manufacturer: British
Model: Flintlock Musket
Type: Musket
Gauge: 78
Barrel: 44 1/8 inch part octagon
Finish: bright
Stock: walnut
Item Views: 1116
Item Interest: Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 109
Class: Antique

This musket is featured on pages 48 and 49 of George Moller's "American Military Shoulder Arms, Volume I: Colonial and Revolutionary War Arms" and has his small "GDM" collection mark twice by the toe. He dated it to c. 1650-1670 and indicated the "FL" markings on the barrel and stock are for Colonel Francis Luttrell, the owner of Dunster Castle in Somerset. He notes that the initial may have been added sometime in the 1681-1689 period that Luttrell was colonel of the local militia regiment and then King James's forces at Exeter. The castle was owned by the Luttrell family dating back to 1376. In 1643, after the start of the English Civil War under the leadership of Thomas Luttrell, the castle was surrendered to overwhelming Royalist forces under the command of the Marquess of Hertford who established a garrison there. In 1645, Colonel Francis Wyndham surrendered the castle to the Roundhead Army. A Parliamentarian garrison remained there until 1651 when the castle was returned to the Luttrell family. In 1665, the Duke of Monmouth led a protestant revolt against James II, and Colonel Francis Luttrell formed a militia to repel the invasion; however, his men were untrained and lacking the will to fight threw down their weapons and fled. By 1688, his loyalty to the despotic King James declined, and he supported William of Orange. He raised the regiment that became known as The Green Howards'. It's believed that probably at this time muskets from the armory were branded with the initials FL (Francis Luttrell). It was a common practice of armories to confirm ownership and ensure their return. The armory was not large, and the number of muskets is estimated to have been only 30 to 60. Very few of them survive aside from a few that remained in the castle. The two-stage, smoothbore barrel has a post front sight, two girdles at the transition point, the "FL" marking and a "crown/G" on top at the breech, and a grooved rear sight. The lock has a removable pan and the distinctive catch of the doglocks. The frizzen and tail of the lock have sculpted accents. The furniture is simple and consists of a single sheet iron ramrod ferrule and trigger guard secured by a screw up to the barrel tang at the front and a nail at the rear. Both sides of the butt have the "FL" stamps. Provenance: The George Moller Collection

Rating Definition:

Good with dark brown patina on the barrel and furniture, dark gray patina on the lock, moderate pitting on the trigger guard, lighter pitting elsewhere, and general mild wear. The stock has a period repair in the butt, insect holes and chipping concentrated on the spliced, once split section, and general mild dings and scratches. Mechanically fine.

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