The makers have kindly confirmed that this rare Edwardian small gauge shotgun was completed in late 1907 or early 1908 for a cost of £16. With browned Damascus barrels engraved with band of stylized foliage at each breech end. Narrow concave rib with bead front sight, inlaid with a gold number “2” and signed “WATSON BROS. 29. OLD BOND ST. LONDON. W.” The underside of the barrels struck with Birmingham nitro proof marks. Casehardened action signed “WATSON BROS.” on each side, with blued toplever with gold inlaid number “2”, automatic safety with silver inlaid “SAFE”, blued floorplate and blued trigger guard, and fences finely carved with stylised acanthus foliage. With classic English border and scroll engraving throughout. Well figured straight hand stock included 3/4 inch wood extension, and checkered panels to the heel, grip and forearm, the last with Anson push button release, and the underside of the butt inset with blank gold oval initial escutcheon. In canvas fitted gun case lined in red baize. Barrel and stock measurements (R/L): bore diameter nine inches from the breech proved at 29/28 (.543/.550 inches) and measured at .550/.554 inches; choke constriction .002/.028 inches; 1 7/16 inch drop at comb; 2 1/16 inch drop at heel; 13 15/16 inch length of pull; weight 5 lbs. 6 oz. Provenance: The Malcolm King Collection
Very fine. The barrels retain 70% older rebrowned finish with clear signature, some muzzle rub and handling fading, and scattered storage blemishes and slight scratches. Action with 40% original casehardened finish with clear engraving, the remainder a lightly discolored patina. Toplever retaining much reblued finish, floorplate and trigger guard each with traces of blued finish. Trigger guard tang screws expertly replaced. Stock with some oil soaking, well-defined multi-point checkering, scattered light storage and handling marks and blemishes throughout, older expert extension. The case is very good with mild storage wear. Mechanically excellent.
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