A SUPERB PAIR OF 25-BORE WHEELOCK HUNTING-RIFLES WITH GILDED MOUNTS, no visible serial numbers,
Austrian, dated for 1652, with slightly swamped, reblued octagonal 32 3/4in. barrels, the top-flat signed MATHEVS MATL. 1652', gilded dove-tailed fore-sights and gilded standing notch rear-sights with an additional folding leaf and feathered foot, twin engraved bands at breech together with their respective gothic number '1' or '2' of a pair inlet in gold, engraved brushed bright top-tang, large slab-sided locks engraved with scenes of hunters both on foot and horseback hunting beasts with hounds, the pan sides signed 'IBERBACHER', the bridles engraved with a cherub holding a shield signed 'IN LINZ', the cocks engraved with cherubs combating mythical beasts, walnut full-stocks with triangular cross-section butts, the stocks further carved around the tangs, ramrod channels and furniture, horn, bone and burr walnut facings to the patch-box lids, edges of the cheek-pieces and fore-end tips, all the furniture pieces engraved, carved and gilded, probable original ramrods and both guns with the remnants of old gummed museum labels marked 'STEYR' (woodwork with old repairs and small losses)
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