This pair of pistols was manufactured by Claude Coignet of St. Etienne, France, in the late 18th century. Double barrel pistols are very rare and were expensive and difficult to produce. Engraved and gold embellished examples like this were owned by dignitaries, high ranking military officers, and a few wealthy land holders. They are marked "CDE COIGNET" on the right locks and "ST ETIENNE" on the left locks. Both are also marked with "TORDU" (French for "twist") on the ribs with gold fill. The octagonal sections of the barrels, sun ray designs around the blade front sights, barrel tangs, and engraving backgrounds are also gold filled/washed. The engraving patterns are a floral aside from the martial designs on the lock tails. The stocks have coordinating floral carving, silver furniture, and are fitted with fancy thumb plates. Wooden ramrods with metal rammers are fitted under the barrels.
Fine overall. 70% of the original gold finish remains. The locks and furniture are mostly bright and have some aged patina and light pitting. The forward sections of the barrels have traces of original blue finish and otherwise a brown patina with some light pitting. The stock has some hairline cracks on the right side of the forend and a faint repair on the underside below the breech. The carving and engraving patterns are crisp, and the locks function excellently.
As discussed in A. Provenance: The Robert Bretherton Collection; Property of a Gentleman
Fine. 70% of the original gold finish remains. The front of the barrels has primarily a dark brown patina and traces of the original blue finish. The locks are mostly bright, and the furniture has primarily a dark aged patina. There are patches of oxidation and mild pitting scattered throughout. The stock is very good and has some minor dings and scratches, crisp carving, and some small chips at the locks. The barrel wedge is absent. The locks function excellently, and the markings and engraving patterns are mostly crisp.
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