Original Gurhka Snider .577 Artillery Short Rifle with Saber Bayonet circa 1870
Original Item: One Only. This is the very LAST of these rare examples we received in our 2003 Nepalese Palace purchase in Kathmandu.
The Gurkha Army was made up of principally Infantry Battalions and some Artillery Units. Cavalry were only used for the Royal Guard. An ally of Great Britain since 1816 Nepal became essential with their continued contributions of fighting men into the British Gurkha Regiments. Consequently they developed under British Supervision a remarkable armaments industry for their own needs.
This is a fine example of their work. This is an Artillery Short Rifle in .577 caliber, breech loading Snyder system with 26" barrel. The barrel bears a Bayonet stand to the right side for the Gurkha made P-56/66 British style saber bayonet with a yataghan blade. The mounts are all of brass and the wrist of the stock still retains its original checkering. In very superior condition this Artillery Short Rifle is a prime example of the high quality of Gurkha weapons.
Fully cleaned and ready to display, both Rifle and Bayonet.
Jacob Snider, an American from New York, developed this breech loading system for the P-1853 Enfield, the most prolific imported percussion rifle in use by both the North and South during the U.S. Civil War.
When the British Board of Ordnance appointed a Select Committee in 1864 the snider system was swiftly adopted with the first breechloaders being issued in 1865 to British forces. Improved in 1867 by the use of Colonel Boxer's center fire brass bodied cartridge, the rifle was used very effectively in the Abyssinian Campaign of 1868. The system utilized a hinged breech block with an internal firing pin assembly that permitted the use of a self contained cartridge of lead bullet in cardboard, and, after 1867, brass casing. This highly efficient conversion system prolonged the active life of the P-1853 rifles up until 1871 when the Martini System was adopted. Snider rifles saw continued use throughout the Empire but were officially obsolete by the late 1880s.
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