Double-Barreled Flintlock Shotgun with Exchangeable Percussion Locks and Barrels, Nicolas Noël Boutet (French, Versailles and Paris, 1761–1833), Steel, gold, wood (walnut), silver, horn, French, Versailles and Paris

Double-Barreled Flintlock Shotgun with Exchangeable Percussion Locks and Barrels

Nicolas Noël Boutet (French, Versailles and Paris, 1761–1833)
Exchangeable percussion barrels by Léopold Bernard (French, Paris, active 1832–70)
Lock maker:
Exchangeable percussion locks by B. Montagnon (French, active ca. 1850)
Exchangeable percussion locks and barrels originally sold by G. Zaoué (French, active 1857–61)
ca. 1818–20; exchangeable percussion locks and barrels, dated 1860
Versailles and Paris
French, Versailles and Paris
Steel, gold, wood (walnut), silver, horn
L. of gun 47 3/8 in. (120.3 cm); L. of double barrel 31 7/8 in. (81.0 cm); L. of percussion locks 5 in. (12.7 cm); L. of bullet pouch 7 1/4 in. (18.4 cm); L. of priming flask 6 5/8 in. (16.8 cm); L. of bullet mold 6 3/4 in. (17.1 cm); L. of ramrod extension 10 3/8 in. (26.4 cm); L. of hammer extractor 2 3/16 in. (5.6 cm); L. of brush for cleaning barrel 2 13/16 in. (7.1 cm); L. of bullet extractor 1 5/16 in. (3.3 cm); L. of screwdriver 6 in. (15.2 cm); L. of bullet extractor 3 1/8 in. (7.9 cm); L. of touch hole cleaner 3 3/16 in. (8.1 cm); Cal. .61 in. (15.5 mm); Wt. of gun 6 lbs. 15 oz. (3150 g); Wt. of double barrel 3 lbs. 8 oz. (1600 g); Wt. of percussion locks 5 oz. (150 g); Wt. of bullet pouch 2.5 oz. (71 g); Wt. of priming flask 4.6 oz. (131 g); Wt. of bullet mold 7 oz. (198 g)
Credit Line:
Gift of Stephen V. Grancsay, 1942
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 375
Perhaps the richest and most beautiful gun from the last phase of Boutet’s long career, this firearm was made by him after the Restoration of the monarchy in France in 1815. Its exuberant decoration is reminiscent of the style fashionable before the revolution in 1789. The gun was so appreciated by its owner that, in 1860, he commissioned a group of skillful gunmakers to produce a similarly decorated set of barrels and locks using percussion caps, an advanced method of ignition developed after 1820.
Inscription: a. (on gun)
1. (between barrels) Manufacture de Versailles
2. (on both locks) Boutet à Versailles (see Refs. Stockel, p. 47)
3. (on plaque) B M in script monogram in oval
4. (underneath barrel) twice: F R palm frond below in oval
5. (on gold plaque) 160
6. (on all gold plaques) sphinx (?) in octagonal reserve; amsk in oval
b. (on double barrel)
1. twice in oval: (see cards for ill.) (see Refs. Stockel, p. 371, mark 1233)
4. twice: (see card for ill.) (see Refs. Stockel, p. 371, mark 1234)
5. twice: C in oval
6. C in serrated oval
7. 11ieme - 7 - 1800
c. (on lock)
1. Saoué (G Zaoué) (see Refs. Stockel, p. 324)
2. P D
3. B Montagnon, in oval (see Refs. Stockel, p. 213)
d. (on lock) Saoué (G Zaoué)
f. (on priming flask) Manufacture à Versailles [sic]
g. (on bullet mold) no. 99

(on box) Zoué/Fabt d'armes Bté/S.G.D.G./Entrepot Marseille

Hallmarks (used from 16 August 1819 to 9 May 1838)

(1) an octagon containing a sphinx with number 3 to the left (Paris mark for third standard gold)

(2) an oval containing a profile mask flanked by the number 72 (Paris excise mark)

(3) a lozenge containing letters LB separated by cross and pellet (goldsmith's mark, unidentified; same mark occurs on silver mounts of MMA pistols 04.3.190,191, which have Paris hallmarks for 1809-1819)
Ex. coll.: Prince Fabián Gottlieb Osten-Sachen (military governor of paris in 1814); Sumner Healey, New York; Clarence H. Mackay, Roslyn, Long Island, New York.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "European Arms and Armor," August 3–September 27, 1931.

Espasa (publisher) J. Enciclopedia Universal Ilustrada, Europeo Americana. Vol. 40. Barcelona: J. Espasa (publisher), 1919. p. 930 (for brief biography of Osten-Sachen).

Grancsay, Stephen V. Loan Exhibition of European Arms and Armor: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, August 3 to September 27, 1931. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1931. p. 95, cat. no. 391.

Stockel, Johann F., and Tøjhusmuseet. Haandskydevaabens Bedømmelse. Vol. 1. Copenhagen: Nordlundes Bogtrykkeri, 1938. pp. 47, 371, 324, 213.

Grancsay, Stephen V. "Napoleon's Gunmaker." The American Rifleman (July 1948), pp. 35–38, cover, ill.

Thomas, Bruno, Ortwin Gamber, and Hans Schedelmann. Die Schönsten Waffen und Rüstungen aus Europäischen und Amerikanischen Sammlungen. Heidelberg: Keysersche Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1963. no. 97, ill.

Lindsay, Merrill, Bruce Pendleton, Verne Noll, and Peter Parnall. One Hundred Great Guns: An Illustrated History of Firearms. New York: Walker and Company, 1967. p. 187.

Hoff, Arne. "Hvorfra Stammer Haneformen Med Spore / Where Did the Spurred Cock Originate." Vaabenhistoriske aarbøger (1972), pp. 95–110.

Hoving, Thomas, and Carmen Gómez-Moreno. "Gold." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin (Winter, 1972–73), p. 114, ill.

Pyhrr, Stuart W. "Hidden Marks on Boutet Firearms." The Arms and Armor Annual (1973), pp. 266–274, figs. 11–15, 17, ill.

Tarassuk, Leonid, and Robert Lawrence Wilson. "Aristocratic Arms Collectors: A History of Famous European Aficionados, Part II." Man at Arms 5 p. 31, ill.