Included in this lot is a very rare opportunity to bid on one of the oldest forms of firearms extant! This is a circa 1400s to early 1500s Hand Cannon! Truly the first type of firearm used anywhere in the world. Almost all of this genre of firearm comes from archeological sites where all such artifacts end up in museums and almost never on the collector market. This example, like nearly all in existence, is made of heavy iron that is now heavily and evenly pitted from age. Probably of European origin, possibly German, this large example is approximately 8” long and approximately 2” wide at the muzzle. It is octagon shaped with a 1” bore diameter. There is a pronounced flair to the rear end and a slight flair to the front end of this weapon. The touch hole for placing the lit “wick” or match is located approximately ¾” from the rear. These primitive firearms were typically lashed to the end of a pole- there is a notch cut into the rear side of this example that obviously was used as a securing point for lashing to a pole. They were muzzle loaded with ball, shot or even stones and ignited through the touch hole. Usually they were used by a team of two in which one held and “aimed” the pole with loaded hand cannon attached while the second member of the team held the match or burning stick. Upon command, the match holder placed the burning end to the touch hole and set off the charge. The hand cannon is now an elusive item for any arms collection as most are not on the collector market, but rather on exhibit in castles or museums in Europe. Few have come up for sale in the last decade. One example, similar to this one, was offered at auction by Hermann Historica, Munich, 7 April, 2008. It sold for 2400 Euro. (papers showing photos of this item and sale included with this similar hand cannon) Probably there are only a handful of these early firearms in private collections. This hand canon qualifies as an Antique Firearm, and does not require FFL Transfer or NICS Background Check. Serial Number: NSN.
For a complete representation of condition and for additional images please call 800-686-4216. It is the buyer’s responsibility to view each image and preview the item to determine condition.