Ethnographic Arms & Armour

Go Back   Ethnographic Arms & Armour > Discussion Forums > Ethnographic Weapons

Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 14th July 2020, 09:46 AM   #1
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 68
Default Indian Combination Matchlock & Crossbow?

Hello I am requesting help with identification of this combination matchlock &, I presume, a cross bow.

The 'bow' itself is missing, however the attachment points to bind it to with leather thongs are, I think, quite apparent. The barrel is.565" Cal, 53 " long with integral pan. The twin function serpentine lock simultaneously lowers the match to the pan & the iron notched catch in the breech of the bolt chamber.

In some of the photos I have inserted a yellow rod where the bolt, more an arrow really, would be.

Has anyone seen any other examples similar to this please?
Attached Images
adrian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th July 2020, 10:10 AM   #2
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 68

There is also an inscription near the breech...
Attached Images
adrian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th July 2020, 11:42 AM   #3
Lead Moderator European Armoury
fernando's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal
Posts: 8,356

Let us ask Philip Tom ...
fernando is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th July 2020, 03:33 PM   #4
Philip's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: California
Posts: 904
Default ingenious and unique

This one is news to me -- can't recall seeing any gun/crossbow combo before, from any Eastern culture.

Trying to figure out how this works, it looks like that the bow would have to be positioned vertically in the stock so that the string can access the arrow and the shooter be able to aim and discharge the piece properly.

A few questions come to mind, am wondering...
1. About the attachment of the bow; is there any movement in the hooked iron bracket to allow for fitting the bow and retaining the cord or leather lashings? (I can see that these lashings can't go all way round the forestock and barrel because these might block the view of the gun sights)
2. If the notched iron sear bar for holding the cocked bowstring is substantial enough to handle a bow of any real power -- the spring-loaded rotating "nut" in the stock of a medieval European crossbow can handle the pressure of an enormous draw weight, but I have a hard time visualizing how substantial the design of this Indian system is.
3. What sort of bow might have been used -- self, composite, or comp./reflex? The design of the "grip" portion to better accommodate fit to the pronged retaining mount...

Intriguing! Thanks for sharing it.
Philip is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th July 2020, 04:16 PM   #5
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 840

This is a very interesting piece! What if the crossbow didn't use a bow, but operated like a speargun, where the propelling force was generated by an elastic or rubber-like drawstring. If the front hooks pivot, the eye of the drawstring could be easily affixed to it; two hooks, double the power. Having a rubber-type firing device late 19th century would not be implausible. I am assuming that the item located near the"sear bar," is the trigger device.
drac2k is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th July 2020, 07:52 PM   #6
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: St. Louis, MO area.
Posts: 1,577

What an interesting piece. Never seen one before. I think the speargun theory might make the most sense (?) Wonder why those hooks have tapered, pointed ends ?
I was thinking of the possibility of a ramrod with a pointed end doubling as a spear point. But the hole in the fore stock is to large in diameter. Guess the individual had to carry the ramrod separately.
Still can't figure out how it works.

rickystl is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT +1. The time now is 03:46 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Posts are regarded as being copyrighted by their authors and the act of posting material is deemed to be a granting of an irrevocable nonexclusive license for display here.