The Cleveland Museum of Art

Collection Online as of March 3, 2024

Wheel-Lock Hunting Pistol

Wheel-Lock Hunting Pistol

Overall: 54.6 cm (21 1/2 in.); Barrel: 31.8 cm (12 1/2 in.); Bore: 1.4 cm (9/16 in.)
Location: 210B Firearms

Did You Know?

In this time period nobles bred dogs to help them hunt boars; on the barrel of this gun, a boar is shown charging a dog.


The walnut stock of this pistol is inlaid with engraved stag horn in the form of interlacing foliage and arabesques interspersed with putti, birds, and animals—an elegant weapon befitting a noble patron. Since pistols of this type could deliver only one shot and had to be reloaded to fire the next round, they were commonly made in pairs to be worn in leather holsters. The large ball-shaped pommel on the grip made it easier to withdraw the pistol from its holster, and also served as a counterweight to a heavy steel barrel. Additionally, the pommel became a useful weapon when the firing mechanism failed or when close quarters required its use.
  • George Francis William Henry Denison, Early of Londesborough (1892-1920), Yorkshire, England
    Frank Gair Macomber (1849-1941), Boston, MA, sold to the Cleveland Museum of Art
    The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH
  • Catalogue of Arms and Armour. [Boston, Massachusetts]: [Frank Gair Macomber], 1900. Cat. no. 416
    Gilchrist, Helen Ives. A Catalogue of the Collection of Arms & Armor Presented to the Cleveland Museum of Art by Mr. and Mrs. John Long Severance; 1916-1923. Cleveland: Cleveland Museum of Art, 1924. Mention: p. 144, F3; Reproduced: Plate XXXIV, F3
    Cleveland Museum of Art, and Helen Ives Gilchrist. Handbook of the Severance Collection of Arms and Armor. 2d ed., 1948. Reproduction: p. 41
    Fliegel, Stephen N. Arms and Armor: The Cleveland Museum of Art. [Cleveland, Ohio]: The Museum, 1998. 141, 174
    Olsen, Kirstin. All Things Shakespeare: An Encyclopedia of Shakespeare's World. Westport, Conn: Greenwood Press, 2002. 268
    Fliegel, Stephen N. Arms & Armor: The Cleveland Museum of Art. [Cleveland, Ohio]: Cleveland Museum of Art, 2007. 193
  • Armor Court Reinstallation. The Cleveland Museum of Art (organizer).
  • {{cite web|title=Wheel-Lock Hunting Pistol|url=false|author=|year=1578|access-date=03 March 2024|publisher=Cleveland Museum of Art}}

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