This is a very Austrian/Bohemian styled short jaeger rifle or carbine from around the mid-18th century. The barrel is signed "ANDREAS SCHVLTZE" behind the rear sight; however, the lock is signed "IEAN-PIERE-APARIS" in the banner under the pan indicating a French connection. The barrel has a gilt brass bead style blade front sight and matching gilt notch rear sight with second folding leaf and ornate floral finial. The barrel tang has some scroll engraving with gold highlights. The lock has a relief engraved scene of two stags at the tail and a hunter with a gun and dogs at the center with gilt backgrounds. The lock fittings have scroll engraving with gilded backgrounds. The furniture is gilt brass and features scroll patterns, grotesque masks, a hunter with horn and a dog on the trigger guard bow, an elaborate scene of the hunt on the side plate with a walled city in the background, and a classical figure and dog on the buttplate tang, and the stock has some fine molding, incised and raised relief carved scroll patterns, and a horn edge inlay on the cheek rest.
Very fine with 30% original blue finish on the barrel fading to smooth gray and brown patina, bright regilded furniture with some light aged patina forming, and generally rather light overall wear for its age. The refinished stock is also very fine and has distinct carving, glossy varnish, and minor dings and scratches. The set trigger mechanism needs some attention, but the rifle is otherwise mechanically fine.
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